23WIP Speaker

Ellen Grace Henson

CEO / Founder,
Marketing Mechanics

Ellen Grace Henson, 2023 Women In Product Speaker

  As an engineer, designer, adventurer, and inventor, Ellen has always looked to understand the needs of customers and the roles of all disciplines within a company in delivering value to the customer. Her belief is that when people are appreciated and respected at work – regardless of their role — this positive experience extends into the rest of their life.

While centering on the human relationships that are the foundation for successful products and businesses, building models and frameworks comes naturally to Ellen. Each company and product she’s engaged with has enabled her to expand and refine her work. Ellen’s frameworks and methodologies cover the full customer and product lifecycle, incorporating diverse cross-discipline perspectives.

Ellen studied architecture and urban planning as an undergraduate at MIT and became enamored with computers. After graduating and riding a bicycle around the United States for 3 summers, she launched a career as an engineer and technical manager. In the mid-90s, seeking a broader perspective and more customer contact, she transitioned into Product Management — a role that has the potential to touch the customer and every department in a company, working to help align the teams, products, and services on delivering value to the customer.

Her design training at MIT was strongly user-centric, a perspective that has driven her engineering, product management, and consulting work. Ellen’s career spans multiple markets, technologies, teams, and companies — each engagement enabling her both to bring deep skills and develop new perspectives. The models, frameworks, and methodologies she’s developed all express her belief that building successful product businesses requires collaboration across disciplines so that the customer receives the value they want, need, and are willing to pay for at every touch point with a company.

With a client list including start-ups to Global 500 companies as well as non-profits and governmental entities and work that encompasses B2B, B2C, hardware, and software across interactive media, networks, security, cloud-based services, software, predictive medicine, manufacturing, agricultural technology and more — Ellen has needed to be highly adaptable in her approach. All of her frameworks reflect this. Looking towards the next several years and building what’s next for her, she plans to expand her reach and enable professionals across product management and other disciplines to do their best work in delivering value to customers.

“My passion is to support teams and individuals in doing their best work.”

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