Jessica Mean, Product Manager in Chicago, IL, United States
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Jessica Mean

Verified Expert  in Product Management

Product Manager

Chicago, IL, United States
Toptal Member Since
August 5, 2019

Jessica is a former Googler with a master's degree in product management from Northwestern University. She has worked with Fortune 100s, startups, and VCs throughout her career to develop product and innovation strategies and build and launch new products and services. She has launched dozens of products and services across various industries, including tech, healthcare, eCommerce, IoT, education, CPG, and finance.

Project Highlights

MVP That Secured $4.4 Million in Funding
Launched LandscapeHub, an eCommerce platform for landscapers and growers.
App Launched for a Fortune 500
Led a cross-functional product team to design and develop Forever Us, a new insurance product from Thrivent Financial.
Time Magazine Award-winning Product
Led innovation consulting for Tyson Foods, resulting in a new sustainable food product that earned a Time Magazine award.


Work Experience

Owner | Product Consultant

2018 - PRESENT
  • Led client projects and teams to develop web and mobile products using Agile methodologies.
  • Implemented product management processes and frameworks for clients.
  • Led design thinking workshops and trained client product teams.
  • Conducted market and user research to identify unmet needs and product priorities.
  • Spoke at Women In Product and Tandem Executive Network.

Product Strategist

2017 - 2018
Table XI
  • Partnered with clients to build and launch complex, custom-built web and mobile products with budgets ranging from $50,000 to $850,000.
  • Managed cross-functional, distributed agile teams comprised of designers, developers, and researchers.
  • Led lean user research sprints to uncover unmet user needs and product feedback.
  • Facilitated design sprints and other discovery workshops for clients to build and test prototypes before making project investments.
  • Facilitated business canvas modeling workshops for clients to determine product-market fit and business opportunities.

Product Manager

2015 - 2017
  • Launched a national sales portal product to support sales executives with branded resources.
  • Managed a backlog of customer feedback and prioritized user stories for implementation.
  • Led a team of designers to create marketing content (infographics, whitepapers) for product support.
  • Developed advertising assets (HTML5 ads, landing pages, websites, videos) for sales portal and teams.
  • Worked with a globally distributed team in North America and Asia.

Program Manager

2013 - 2015
  • Launched and managed Local Guides, a Google Maps product that gamifies users to share reviews, ratings, photos, and other insights.
  • Increased active Local Guides users by 10x in target cities through new feature adoption.
  • Produced Local Guides product videos in eight languages resulting in 4+ million views.
  • Led UX research and trusted tester programs to improve Google Maps and Google+ features.
  • Launched an official Local Guides help center, and developed, localized, and managed content in 40 languages.

Digital Marketing Manager

2010 - 2013
Association Forum of Chicagoland
  • Managed the organization's digital presence including website, mobile apps, and email marketing.
  • Relaunched the website (+190% visits, +330% page views) and received the 2011 EXCEL Award - Gold, Web Publishing: Redesign.
  • Launched the company's first mobile app and two event apps as well as managed content development.
  • Designed comprehensive marketing campaigns to boost event sales revenue and generate brand awareness. Received 2011 EXCEL Award - Bronze, Media Innovation: Integrated Mixed Media Campaign.
  • Managed digital content for an in-house digital magazine.

Product Marketing Manager

2008 - 2010
  • Led marketing initiatives for a new product development team.
  • Interviewed customers to generate product development insights.
  • Assisted with VC fundraising presentations resulting in $8.5 million Series B capital growth funds.
  • Managed top-funnel lead generation and built product awareness through marketing campaigns and tradeshow strategy.
  • Administered the $100,000 annual budget and managed one lead generation specialist.

MVP That Secured $4.4 Million in Funding

Launched LandscapeHub, an eCommerce platform for landscapers and growers.

Led a product design and development team to build and launch LandscapeHub, a two-sided marketplace web app. The CEO was a first-time entrepreneur and landscaping subject matter expert who had never built a digital product. Over the nine-month project, I led a team of seven designers and developers to launch an MVP within five months then managed four months of iteration. Additionally, I worked closely with the CEO and other executives to define project scope and to manage budget and staff resources. The MVP resulted in a $4.4 million seed round.

App Launched for a Fortune 500

Led a cross-functional product team to design and develop Forever Us, a new insurance product from Thrivent Financial.

Consultant for Thrivent Financial, hired to guide a the product development of Forever Us, a mobile app for marriage insurance through Thrivent Financial. The project team was comprised of a business team not familiar with Agile and a novice development team that had never developed a new product. Over the 11-month timeline, I coached the business team on bringing agility into their process and led the development team to launch the new project on time and budget.

Time Magazine Award-winning Product

Led innovation consulting for Tyson Foods, resulting in a new sustainable food product that earned a Time Magazine award.

Advised Tyson Foods’ innovation team on their new food waste reduction campaign. Throughout the project, I worked with team members in marketing, packaging, manufacturing, and engineering. We had to be very mindful of the downstream impacts to all facets of the supply chain while maintaining the campaign's mission.

Fraud Detection Product Live Redevelopment

Led a development team to rebuild a fraud detection product while supporting platform customers.

As a consultant, I led project management for CounterFind, a web app for brands to locate and shut down fraudulent goods. The established product was poorly developed, so our challenge was to rebuild the product while keeping the lights on for current, paying customers including the Dallas Cowboys and Universal Music. This project required an intense level of coordination between the client, brands, and development team to ensure no loss of service was experienced by the customers. Additionally, the client was going through fundraising and was extremely budget conscious, so I worked closely with their COO and CFO to prioritize stories to maximize the budget and allocate resources as needed.
2015 - 2016

Master's Degree in Product Design and Development Management

Northwestern University - Illinois

2003 - 2007

Bachelor's Degree in Communications

Vanguard University of Southern California - California


Confluence, Pivotal Tracker, Trello, Jira, Lean Testing, Slack, G Suite, Figma, MURAL


User Testing, Agile Workflow, Agile Product Management, Agile, Scrum, Human-centered Design (HCD), Kanban

Industry Expertise

Healthcare, Construction, Insurance, Legal Counsel, Nonprofits, Consumer Products, Education Technology (Edtech)


Product Management, Affinity Mapping, Design Sprints, Product Delivery, Product Strategy, User Requirements, User Stories, Agile Sprints, Product Vision, Product Discovery, Discovery Workshops, Innovation Management, Consumer Insights, Product Owner, Customer-centered Product Development, Digital Product Management, Digital Project Management, Product-market Fit, Minimum Viable Product (MVP), Product Ownership, Product Planning, Product Research, Product Requirements Documentation (PRD), Feature Roadmaps, Feature Planning, MVP Design, Training & Training Content Development, Business Model Canvas, User Research, User Flows, User Journeys, User Workflows, User Engagement, User Needs, Scrum Master, Agile Coaching, Agile Transformation, Dual Track Agile, Product Roadmaps, New Products, Project Delivery, Delivery Management, Delivery, Innovation, Innovation Labs, Lean Canvas, Lean Research, Lean Experiments, Lean Startups, Lean Inception, Training, Employee Training, Training Materials, Training Content, Mobile Apps, Mobile, Product Operations, Product Launch, Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), Lean Project Management, Lean Product Development, New Product Development, Product Marketing, Project Management, Market Research, Audience Targeting, Competition Research, Scope Management, Project Timelines, Monetization, Market Research & Analysis, Project Budget Management, Business Planning, Product Coach, Feasibility Studies, SaaS, App Development, Client Management, Google Workspace, Aha!, Finance, Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG), Internet of Things (IoT), eCommerce, eCommerce Payments, Mobile eCommerce, eCommerce Management, Consumer Services, Consumer Technology, Consumer-facing Product Design, Android, iOS, Web App Development, Mobile Web, Mobile Prototypes, Mobile Design, Mobile UX, Mobile UI, Web, Revenue Strategy, Cost Estimation, Budget Modeling, Social Media

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