Series - part 20 of 26

Here are the 15 GrowthMentors of February


Let’s give a big round of applause to these awesome people for joining GrowthMentor and helping people on their growth journeys.

This post is part of the Mentor Batches series

1. Anwar Sultan

Describe yourself

Hi, I am Anwar, currently a Chief Marketing Officer at a consumer services subscription business with over 4 million members. I have over 10 years of experience in digital and E-commerce helping retailers and brands scale online, with a focus on building high-performance growth teams and a data-driven approach to product and marketing.

Experience with both privately owned businesses and working with private equity investors in the UK. I have a deep passion for helping people achieve success and growth in both their personal and professional lives. Looking forward to talking.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

I have a deep passion for helping and mentoring people achieve success. It is one of the biggest motivators for me in my work and over the years mentoring and leadership have been where I have received the biggest positive feedback.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Failing Fast. Learning Faster.

Continuously evolving and challenging both yourself and the people around you to push the boundaries of your own possibilities.

Growth is the openness to accept knowledge, the ability to utilise it, and the drive to create it.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

I would love to mentor people on how to achieve results through people and leadership.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Our product was aimed solely at going out and working with hospitality and the entertainment sector. During the first lockdown, our product relevant to our millions of consumer base became 0.

Within 3 weeks we launched new partnerships, repurposed our content and we repositioned our entire brand communication to enable consumers to utilise our service while “staying in” while customer acquisition slowed as our core product was on “lock downtown” the change resulted in maintaining our ongoing customer renewals and preventing churn.

This strategy navigated our business successfully through the pandemic and now enabled us to be less reliant on one product.

View Growthmentor Profile

2. Bojan Ambrus

Describe yourself

Hey! I’m a commercially focused growth marketing professional. I’m at home thinking and planning strategically while implementing tactically, with driving volume and revenue growth through creative and disruptive marketing campaigns the goal through 15+ years’ enterprise and start-up experience.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

Experience and learn from new situations, while growing my network.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

A growth mindset is the continuous breaking of rules that your company and/or industry has enforced, and then re-developing those rules to ensure incremental gains are achieved.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Digital growth strategy and CRO.

Describe an out-of-the-box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Problem: Establishing social proof through high demand.

Solution: Collaborating with engineering dept. to “break” the website so that it appeared that website was experiencing high demand for the new festival ticket tier release. Outbound communication followed to offer an alternative method of purchase for those who had shown an interest, which generated the impact needed to achieve volume and revenue growth.

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3. Bunie Anyaegbunam

Describe yourself

Hey, I’m Bunie a seasoned growth marketer with a bias towards execution. Formerly CMO of hyper-growth marketplace business in the UK, I want to help startups that put customers at the heart of their business.

I am obsessed with the customer experience and using data to help define the product so that we delight customers at every step of their journey. Which ultimately turns customers into our most profitable acquisition channel.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

To work with a variety of scale-ups and help them solve their toughest growth challenges.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Growth mindset is continuous learning by deliberately putting yourself into uncomfortable scenarios. Comfort is the enemy of growth.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Acquisition strategy and execution.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

A client was receiving too many leads which meant it was difficult for the Customer Success team to prioritise who to contact first. By changing the Facebook lead generation strategy and hooking it up with Hubspot Marketing, I was able to add friction to the process by putting the leads through an email sequence thereby reducing the number of leads the team was receiving and only sending the highest quality leads.

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4. Candelaria Narvaez

Describe yourself

Growth Wizard, eager to continue mentoring besides entrepreneurs of my country.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

Spread others wings and fly 😉

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Discover different streams and strategies for growth, that will make an impact in the entrepreneur/SMB/company results and scalability.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

SMB, local entrepreneurs in their digital transformation and approach to growth.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Everyday economic situation put us in the creative business lane in my country 😉 also, working for some US clients (United Airlines, Coca Cola and Sandow) made me and my teams very quick and data-driven “decisioners ”

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5. Christina Leigh Morgan

Describe yourself

I help entrepreneurs play the edge of their business and personal wellness, for scalable, sustainable growth. :hearts: Emerging and rapid-growth consumer markets.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

Building a thing from the ground up can be hard — but it doesn’t have to be.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Always think BIGGER. Teams who view failure as data, everything as experiments, and growth as play, WIN.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Think in holistic systems. Everything is interconnected. The earlier you build for this, the faster you can scale.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Beyond marketplace liquidity, cross-border payments, untangling attribution or leveraging growth loops for scale, unifying an int’l, distributed team against dynamic focal points proved most complex.

Solution = holistic user journey doc for all teams to add to, creating a physical vantage point of understanding of gaps/wins/prioritization rationale across depts/countries/languages.

A Google doc! Many complex things can be simple, when you solve for the root cause.

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6. Jake Bodmer

Describe yourself

Hello, I’m Jake. I am the Director, CRM at a DTC smart home tech company. I specialize in the strategy and execution of customer journeys, retention, loyalty, and analyzing what touchpoints increase LTV.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

I want to help others that are in a similar position that I was about 5-10 years ago, a young professional looking for resources and relevant suggestions.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Testing and optimizing, it’s the place where you learn the most about your audience and your messaging.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

A growth mindset is knowing that you don’t know everything. Testing a hypothesis (or 3), analyzing results, and optimizing is the best way to achieve your goals.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

How do we encourage an entirely new demographic to be interested in our product? This was an important question as the company was looking to grow aggressively and had a very niche audience and there was a need to expand beyond that. I helped to strategize and test multiple user journeys to new audiences and quickly discover which potential new audience were engaging and converting. This made the decision to target and grow the new audience with data an easy one across the team.

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7. Juan Pablo Velasquez

Describe yourself

Hi, I’m Juan, SVP of Product at RobinFood. I’m a guy who’s completely passionate about product and tech. I love to see and try to make the best products ever that make people go like “This is completely amazing, I have to recommend this to my friends”. Looking forward to chatting with you, share ideas, and create something amazing together

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

I love teaching and learning from others since I was in school. Especially on product and tech topics.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

A growth mindset for me is where a group of people try to understand what is happening, experiment with new ideas, try new things for failures and optimize what is working, and definitely the golden rule: taking data-driven decisions to have a better chance to be successful.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

I would love to mentor about Product Mindsets. For me, Product is both a science and an art. And to understand how a need to be solved, an idea, and a value proposition match together is simply the key to having an awesome digital Product.

Describe an out-of-the-box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

One of the biggest problems I see with startups and even big companies on their digital products is that they launch products without knowing what, when, and how they want to measure success. Identifying common patterns on the customer journey with the perspective of a user in mindset is key to achieving product success and taking good business and product data-driven decisions.

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8. Julia Ankudinova

Describe yourself

I am a product manager and growth hacking maniac. I help young businesses and startups to find their bottlenecks and grow fast by making deep product, marketing, organizational analysis. My OK-OK philosophy and empathy contribute to authentic relationship building and effective collaboration.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

My mission is to help others achieve their ambitious goals&dreams, to make a tangible impact on their business & personal development, and to increase my own expertise learning from challenging cases.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

The belief that through dedication, learning and hard work one can achieve unbelievable results in personal development as well as in his business.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Complete marketing strategy of all AARRR stages.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Problem: Healthy Food delivery service launching the competitive market with very low budget for marketing and customer acquisition. Didn’t have first subscribers

Solution: Deep customer purchasing behavior analysis and segmentation (“perfect householders”, “busy career person”, “easy-going”). Selection of the most popular channel for each segment. Targeting campaigns with particular messages and lead magnets ( My balanced diet, Nutrition for the businessmen, My Food Diary ) brought first users and subscriptions shot through the roof.

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9. Kevin Manley

Describe yourself

I’ve helped build growth-focused product and marketing teams at several companies: bringing products to market, improving product monetization, driving leads and sign-ups, and increasing user engagement and adoption.

In just one sentence, why do you want to become a growth mentor?

I love to work on growth and connect with others interested in growth.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Having a growth mindset means you are continuously looking for improvement to acquisition, activation, retention, and monetization – and finding ways to increase the velocity at which you learn and grow.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Conversion Optimization. It’s where I have spent the most time, and I love finding hacks to improve motivation, reduce friction, and create triggers.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

I once did a redirect experiment that took me 5 minutes to build, and generated a 2,000% increase to adoption, simply by generating a little more awareness along the user journey.

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10. Miguel Trujillo

Describe yourself

I consider myself to be a “documented warrior” that fights complexity to make things real and organizations achieve excellence.

I am a PhD+MBA with 15+ years of international experience in business development and growth, management, strategy, and sales in 12 organizations in 4 countries. I have a passion for designing and executing business projects, including launching, growth, and monitoring. My ultimate goal is to generate value for the client, organization, and stakeholders.

In just one sentence, please tell us why you want to become a growth mentor?

I am passionate about mentoring, I have +10 yrs. of experience, and I’m working for 5 organizations at the moment mentoring startups. I just love it!

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Focus on what matters. Do more of the stuff that works. Know what not to do.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Fundraising (especially venture capital).

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

In 2009 I was launching one of the 1st accelerators of Spain, and I had no methodology to copy (the first accelerators appeared in the USA in 2007). At the time all entrepreneurs were complaining of a lack of capital and that local solutions did not work.

So my solution was partnering with one of the best business angel clubs in Europe (Sophia Business Angels, France) to become the trainers of my accelerator and to receive in exchange curated deal flow for them to invest. It was such a great solution that my bosses were impressed, and a year later the European Business Angel association hired me in Brussels for the quality of my work. Much proud of my decision!

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11. Nira de Waele

Describe yourself

Hi there, I have a master’s in entrepreneurship and about 10 years of experience running a technology startup and working in a scale-up. I started mentoring because I wanted to turn the mistakes I’ve made into something positive and valuable (and oh boy there were quite a few). I have a good understanding of building a product, finding a product-market fit, strategy, marketing, raising money, operations, and making compromises 😉

In just one sentence, please tell us why you want to become a growth mentor?

I wish I had a mentor when I grew my own business.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

A growth mindset means to keep on being hungry (to quote Mr. Jobs). It means to be agile and see opportunities instead of obstacles.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Self reflection and self-efficacy. I believe that the entrepreneurs are experts on their product and industry. I want them to believe in it as well.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Helping a biotech startup prep for their pitch I ‘translated’ the founder’s product description from highly technical complex language to a more comprehensive investors-friendly language. The founder was so happy she asked to record me explaining her product back to her 🙂

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12. Sebastian Müller

Describe yourself

Hey, I’m Sebastian – Co-Founder of MING Labs, and an expert in Design Thinking, Business Design, and Venture Design. I love going from Zero to One, crafting novel solutions, and helping great ideas thrive commercially.

In just one sentence, please tell us why you want to become a growth mentor?

I enjoy helping founders find success.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Strong opinions, weakly held. A growth mindset is all about the ability to take points of view, yet also change them regularly if evidence suggests otherwise.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Business Design – How to purposefully shape all aspects of your organization with the customer as the singular focus.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Using gamification and positive reinforcement to improve citizen-facing services of a government agency, increasing their NPS by >60%.

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13. Stefan Secker

Describe yourself

I’m Stefan. I enjoy cracking complex growth problems, particularly going deep on the underlying psychology and habits. I’m passionate about the science of learning and like to challenge myself to learn new things fast. Every problem can be turned into a game.

In just one sentence, please tell us why you want to become a growth mentor?

I had a great mentor myself, I enjoy teaching, and I think mentoring people with different business problems than my own team is the best way for me to level up.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

A growth mindset means comparing yourself to who you were yesterday and framing problems as challenges. It also means assuming you’re only at 1% of what you’re able to do, no matter where you are right now.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Creating a great user experience throughout the customer journey. Because this is the most important thing for growth.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Did competitive analysis, by collecting competitors’ employees on Linkedin and building what I assumed is their org chart in order to better understand their focus and strategy.

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14. Tanguy Leborgne

Describe yourself

For more than 25 years, I’ve been a product and business executive in Silicon Valley, working at Adobe, Avid, and Plantronics. In 2020, I founded The Product Sherpa, a new-generation coaching and training venture that guides product and business leaders in early-stage businesses or companies in need of transformation and turnaround.

In just one sentence, please tell us why you want to become a growth mentor?

For 25+ years, I’ve helped companies succeed one-at-a-time as an executive, but since the pandemic hit, I’ve decided to expand to as many early-stage businesses as I can and created The Product Sherpa.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

A growth mindset is a belief that you can overcome virtually any problem with the right dose of dedication, openness, and guidance. As you keep learning, experimenting, and building resilience, great accomplishments will come.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Helping you focus on your WHY (why are we launching this business/product, why do we believe it will succeed, what is getting us motivated and pumped-up every single day…)

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

When I was leading product at Plantronics, I drove the effort of our entry into the fitness “hearable” market, specifically targeting the outdoors runners. The problems were tough ones to solve: fit issues during vigorous exercise, safety, resistance to sweat… We ended up launching the first generation of BackBeat Fit headsets. It addressed these critical problems and became a reference in the category after selling millions of units.

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15. Yishi Zuo

Describe yourself

Hi – I’m Yishi! I’m the former founder-CEO of a tech-enabled services business that raised $1.5M+ in funding and grew to 8+ employees and is still operating. I’m now running a start-up studio and I like to work with and help entrepreneurs at the idea / pre-idea stage.

In just one sentence, please tell us why you want to become a growth mentor?

I enjoy meeting and helping entrepreneurs at the idea / pre-idea stage.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

For me – a growth mindset embodies humility and willingness to learn. I believe in admitting that the world is complex, and we never know all the answers, but we shall keep trying our best!

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Validating a potential problem / business idea in the lowest-cost way possible.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

Pre-pandemic. Our company did weekly lunches. The restaurant we always ordered from charged 30% more Grubhub vs. ordering direct. I didn’t want to waste my engineers’ time – so I jury rigged a google sheet + calendar + email solution that was basically a replica of Grubhub. It took about 30 minutes to set up, and saved us well over $1,000 over the years.

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Interested in becoming a growth mentor?

What we’re looking for:

  • Growth marketers, product managers, and designers, with extraordinary track-records of success
  • Inspirational founders that have “been there and done that.”
  • Friendly people that take joy in helping other people.
  • At least 5 years of demonstrable experience working in growth.
  • GrowthMentor is a #givefirst platform. You should be cool with mentoring for free until you have three reviews.
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