Meet your mentors

Receive guidance from Australia’s leading UX Design, Product Management and Digital Marketing practitioners. All of our mentors have over 15 years experience in their field.

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UX Design

Andrew Doherty

Former UX Manager Google

Andrew began working in tech when internet modems operated at 11kb per second and made that funny noise while dialing up. Most recently he has been working in stealth mode on a disruptive startup that aims to safely give every human being on earth their own artificially intelligent super powers - Simby.

Prior to Simby, Andrew was leading a UX design team at Google in Mountain View California, focusing on deep tech and the products of the future. He was responsible for envisioning, prototyping, and building product solutions that affect the daily lives of billions of human beings. He is a TEDx speaker and has worked as a technology advisor in customer experience for a number of high profile multinational organisations in New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin and Sydney. With a wealth of real world experience, Andrew loves to help fellow UX designers to reach their personal or project related goals while being able to remain true to themselves, and the needs of their customers.

Elizabeth Pek

Head of UX NewsCorp

Elizabeth (Liz) is a versatile, strategic and pragmatic UX professional with 20+ years experience in designing, developing and transforming market-leading digital products and customer experiences for B2C, B2B and B2B2C businesses in both start-ups and enterprise settings. She has held many Head of UX roles in Financial Services, Telecommunications, Media, and Health and Wellness industries, working on award winning products and helping these companies build their design teams and capabilities.

Liz is passionate about creating experiences that deliver WIN-WIN for business and customer, by combining UX with agile, lean-startup and Human-Centred-Design (HCD) approaches. She enjoys working on the full customer experience life cycle from ideation, strategy & vision through to development, execution and delivery. She also loves coaching individuals and teams towards high performance, and supporting them to achieve the best versions of themselves.

Ken Wong

Senior UX Designer Qantas

Ken has over 17 years experience in UX design, most of which has focused on mobile strategy and design. As Head of UX at Fairfax Media, Ken received multiple Australian Mobile awards for his user centred, mobile led contribution to iconic Australian brands such as the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH), Domain, Good Food Guide and Realestate.com.au. Throughout his tenure, Ken’s leadership saw Fairfax double its UX capability and he was instrumental in the launch of key flagship products including the Domain mobile app, which many of us use every day.

Ken has a passion for tackling complex design challenges and turning these into experiences that feel second nature to consumers and it’s this drive that gets him out of bed every morning. This project is a unique opportunity to be mentored by one of Australia’s leading UX designers and we’re so excited to welcome Ken to the Harness Projects mentor team.

Andrew Hiles

Senior UX Manager Vodafone

Andrew has been designing for over 18 years – starting out as a graphic designer before moving across into digital. He’s worked on projects for household names for both agency-side and client-side.

Moving up the design ladder, Andrew now focuses his energies on user experience as the UX Manager for Vodafone Australia. Andrew relishes a challenge and with solid experience leading UX teams on complex, large scale projects he’s seen his fair share of action. Andrew is a passionate customer advocate and derives his own personal satisfaction from creating experiences that make customer’s lives easier whilst adding value to the products he works on.

Mike Yap

Head of UX & Design Gumtree

Mike has been leading UX, design and product teams for over 20 years. Starting in the madness of the dot com bubble, Mike's career has taken him from fast-growing startups to multinational corporations in Sydney, London and Tokyo and on to some of the biggest tech brands in Australia.

Mike is currently Head of UX & Design at Gumtree and a member of the global eBay Classifieds Design Leaders Group. Prior to Gumtree, Mike was Head of Experience Design at Hipages, Australia's largest two-sided marketplace for home services. Before that, Mike led design and product management for mobile innovation on the CommBank app (Australia's #1 finance app) and CommBank's award-winning Youth app.

Driven by the belief that the best customer experiences are made by passionate, empowered designers, Mike is committed to coaching individuals to success and guiding organisations to new levels of design maturity.

Sue-Lin Tin

Head of Digital Solutions & Innovation CBRE

Sue-Lin has 15 + years of experience working in various industries, from finance to media, building meaningful customer experiences. She started her career as a web developer and business analyst. Along the way, she has acquired an MBA and two children, in that order.

Sue-Lin works at the intersection of technology and business and is passionate about delivering products with a clear strategic vision. She is innately curious about the customer experience, thinking about the big picture of the product and how each detail can contribute. Currently, she leads digital solutions & innovation for a commercial real estate company, always asking the question ‘what’s the problem you are trying to solve?” With various real-life experiences across many projects, Sue-Lin is keen to share this knowledge and work with up and coming designers.

Laura Trouiller

Former Head of UX Hey You

Laura is a Lead UX Designer and Mentor from Paris. While her background is in Art Direction, it’s no surprise that she naturally ended up in UX, a career that blends her passion for design with her interest in human behaviors, technology and business.

She is a hardcore problem solver and brings over 10 years of extensive industry experience across B2C and B2B companies (within agencies, startups, and consultancy), and remote teams. Part pragmatist, part aesthete, she specialises in solving problems with seamlessly intuitive yet beautifully executed UX solutions. She is a big picture thinker, and delivers digital products with a clear strategic vision, down to the details.

As a mentor, you can expect her to share many industry insights, tips about career growth, and technical support. She will make sure you leave the program with as much UX knowledge as possible and some strong confidence about your newly acquired skills.

When not at work, you’ll find Laura hiking in nature, observing creatures deep in the ocean, improving her photography skills, or doing yoga.

Nima Idelkhani

Head of Growth Archistar

With 15+ years of Product, Design and UX experience including numerous start-up and enterprise successes with global brands, some say Nima knows a thing or two about designing products that people want.

After a decade of mastering his craft, in 2017 Nima co-founded 'We Discover' a customer-centric digital agency focused on creating meaningful experiences and after creating a multimillion-dollar business in under 3 years he took his next big challenge, becoming the Chief Product Officer in 2020 at an emerging prop-tech company. He aimed to prove that a 100% customer-centred approach will deliver the most desired and profitable product to market irrespective of how "old and resistant to change" the industry is.

Nima has extensive experience and skill in business and product strategy, understanding human behaviours and desires and knowing how to merge it all to find the best product-market fit.

 

Renan Castro

Head of UX Helium

Having worked with design since 2005, Renan is a generalist Designer who navigated through many different settings, was the first Designer brought into a few teams to scale design internally and worked closely with developers for many years. In 2021, Renan joined Helium Creative as their Head of UX / Design Director.

Starting his career in Brazil as a Graphic Designer, then specialising in User Experience (UX) and working in Canada for five years, Renan migrated to Australia and has been working in Sydney since 2016. During this round-the-world life, Renan had businesses, participated in many failed and successful projects, learned a lot about people, design methodologies, and even learned a bit about development. He considers himself a world citizen, entrepreneur, user advocate, passionate about life, and he strives to make the world a tiny bit better every day.

Damien Lutz

Senior UX/UI Designer Vodafone

Working for start-ups, enterprise and B2B, Damien’s UX experience spans eCommerce, search aggregation, journalism and weather. Blending UX with service design, Damien thrives on creating simple solutions from complex challenges by seeking that sweet balance between desirability, feasibility and viability. He is currently a Senior UX designer and UX Research SME for Vodafone Australia, leading mobile, app and web projects from research to launch.

Damien holds a Masters in Digital Media and continues his own learning by studying various aspects of design—from gamification and speculative design to UX writing—allowing him to bring an explorative approach to nurture students' curiosity.

Emma Stephens

Former Head of Design Frankieone

Emma has 10 years experience in visual and product design working across agency and start-up. Emma specialises in helping fast growing companies build lean design thinking methodologies into their processes.

An expert in digital onboarding in the identity verification space, she has worked with financial institutions including major banks, leading buy-now pay-later providers, accounting software and many fast growing Fintech’s to improve their new customer onboarding experience.

With a strong visual design background, Emma is passionate about building design systems, testing early and often to validate ideas and working closely with development teams to build robust scalable products.

She is passionate about sharing her knowledge and mentoring aspiring designers.

Lisa Huck

Former UX Research Lead Commonwealth Bank

Lisa is a UX Design Strategist specializing in Agile research & team building. She has 25 years of agency & client-side experience, including leadership roles at CommBank, Atlassian, eBay, Plantronics, and PC World. She has worked in Silicon Valley for more than half her career but she still calls Australia home, and has managed to retain her Aussie accent!

Lisa is passionate about helping others hone their UX skills in personally relevant and practical ways. In 2015 she was awarded a Governor commendation for leading a Design Thinking workshop with Social Ventures Australia & PWC for over 70 school principals.

On this project, Lisa will help each student gain a working knowledge of the critical facets of UX design & research, with special emphasis on “problem framing,” “empathetic interviewing,” and “quantifying the user experience” – to achieve customer-centred results with meaningful impact.

Product Management

Andrew Doherty

Former UX Manager Google

Andrew began working in tech when internet modems operated at 11kb per second and made that funny noise while dialing up. Most recently he has been working in stealth mode on a disruptive startup that aims to safely give every human being on earth their own artificially intelligent super powers - Simby.

Prior to Simby, Andrew was leading a UX design team at Google in Mountain View California, focusing on deep tech and the products of the future. He was responsible for envisioning, prototyping, and building product solutions that affect the daily lives of billions of human beings. He is a TEDx speaker and has worked as a technology advisor in customer experience for a number of high profile multinational organisations in New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin and Sydney. With a wealth of real world experience, Andrew loves to help fellow UX designers to reach their personal or project related goals while being able to remain true to themselves, and the needs of their customers.

Nima Idelkhani

Head of Growth Archistar

With 15+ years of Product, Design and UX experience including numerous start-up and enterprise successes with global brands, some say Nima knows a thing or two about designing products that people want.

After a decade of mastering his craft, in 2017 Nima co-founded 'We Discover' a customer-centric digital agency focused on creating meaningful experiences and after creating a multimillion-dollar business in under 3 years he took his next big challenge, becoming the Chief Product Officer in 2020 at an emerging prop-tech company. He aimed to prove that a 100% customer-centred approach will deliver the most desired and profitable product to market irrespective of how "old and resistant to change" the industry is.

Nima has extensive experience and skill in business and product strategy, understanding human behaviours and desires and knowing how to merge it all to find the best product-market fit.

 

Michal Weiss

Senior Product Manager Advanced Navigation

Michal has over 9 years of experience in product management in a variety of industries, including Retail, Insurance, Finance, Mapping and more recently Navigation at Advanced Navigation where she's focused on releasing a brand new Navigation solution for a robot fleet to market.

Michal is extremely passionate about technology and not afraid to be as "Hands-On" as it gets for a product person. These days, you would often find her volunteering to test and demo the product to potential customers by flying drones which, she says, helps her build solutions to real-world problems and craft a delightful experience for the end-users.

Michal was a Product Manager at Nearmap, focused on market research. understanding the world views of the end-users, their businesses and workflows to build business cases, and open new revenue channels through APIs and Integrations.

Prior to Nearmap, Michal was the Product Owner of the Point of Sale software for all Woolworths Limited banners, holding the responsibility for 3000 live stores and continuously releasing new software updates which impacted the lives of millions of people in Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand.

Michal has rich industry experience in enterprises and growth-stage startups, acting in senior leadership roles, she is passionate about empowering people to find their own unique path to fulfil their career ambitions in product management.

Oliver Mitchell

Product Manager Prezzee

Oliver is a Product Manager at Prezzee, one of Australia's fastest growing tech companies (#15 on Deloitte Fast 50, 2020) where he leads New Product Development. He previously founded his own fintech start-up, Moneycado, which used open banking rails to co-ordinate and settle debts in groups. Moneycado is an alumni of Founders Factory accelerator programme.

Oliver believes that product managers should be creative as much as they are logistical. They are story-tellers, whether the medium is mock-ups, memos or presentations, and the anchoring voice in matters of strategy and decisions. He loves to use jobs-to-be-done to understand customers deeply, then draw on design tools to bring ideas to life quickly and effectively.

Digital Marketing

Nell Norman-Nott

Former Head of Marketing Linkedin

Nell has over 15 years’ marketing experience in listed and entrepreneurial environments spanning the UK, Europe and Asia Pacific regions. Originally from England, Nell has lived in Australia since 2009 where she held leadership roles at Yahoo7 and then at LinkedIn as Head of Marketing and Head of the Employer Brand and Media.

Nell has a passion for building marketing solutions that fit the most challenging client brief and as a team leader, combines this with building others’ skills at digital and content marketing. Nell is a public speaker at industry events most recently at the Digital Innovation Summit and Mumbrella360. Nell is a judge for the industry awards – B&T, Mumbrella & Women in Media. Nell continues her own learning, studying Psychology with Monash University which allows her to bring a deep understanding of the science of human behavior to marketing.

On this project, Nell will facilitate the learning of each student in the core areas of digital marketing; understanding an audience, crafting a digital content strategy, defining channels and measuring impact.

Rebecca Lovitt

Former Head of Marketing Alcohol & Drug Foundation

Rebecca has a diverse portfolio of skills across strategy, marketing, experience design, and digital product development built over a rich career journey of nearly 20 years. She has headed up digital teams in corporates, health organisations, not-for-profits and tech start-ups.

Always curious and a passionate continuous learner, Rebecca thrives in environments where she can enable and empower others to be their best. Collaborative practice is at the heart of her operating style with Rebecca loving the challenges of bringing together teams of diverse talents with a clear shared objectives to work on transformative projects.

For Rebecca, the arena of digital marketing unites her love for user experience, creative, strategy and engagement in a space that continues to evolve rapidly.

Agility, adaptability and curiosity are both mindsets and values that guide her practice. Rebecca is working on a range of projects including Heading up Digital and Marketing at Leadership Victoria working on the implementation of new brand, web and marketing stack.