Globalization is the art of developing awesome products and experiences for any customer around the world. Not all product leaders focus on global markets, though. What are the best practices to design and develop world-ready products efficiently and effectively? In this talk, Jean-François Vanreusel of Adobe will highlight the key role that globalization plays in global product management and share best practices to design and develop world-ready products efficiently and effectively.

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On four key concepts in globalization

Globalization is a huge concept, but it’s made up of components that must all be in place, and global product management is positioned to optimize those components. 

“Globalization is the overarching exercise of bringing your business or your product global. So crossing all the borders, and trying to see how you can penetrate all those different markets around the world. And there are two key components to this. You’ll have the business side and the-go-to market strategy, and so forth. And then you have the engineering side, which is how you build a product such that it can be sold around the world.”

On why globalization is so critical to business success

Even though the US market is huge, any company leaves money on the table if they don’t pursue a global strategy. In addition, if you don’t fill a niche, a competitor will. Jean-Francois noted that Apple, Microsoft, Facebook and the like are generating half their revenues and more internationally, and that’s a huge total for each company. But some industries are more difficult than others from a global product management standpoint.

“Intuit makes one of the great products, you know, TurboTax; I use it every year. I hate filing my taxes like most people, but they make it as smooth as possible. But they only have 5% of their revenue coming from international. And the key problem that they have is that each country has its own set of rules and tax regulations and so forth. So it’s really hard to scale for them and to really connect with all the countries around the world. But if you can crack that nut, the value of Intuit on the stock market would skyrocket.”

On why companies need to localize their efforts

It’s easy, especially for US companies, to pursue a global product management strategy yet shortchange the localization aspects they need. After all, isn’t English the universal language? In some parts of the world, it is, but in much of the world, Jean-Francois said, English proficiency is not as high as you might expect.

“If you want to sell products in those countries, it’s going to be a necessity to really localize your user-interface documentation in your experience for those customers. And often work with a research firm, which is called CSA, common sense advisory research. 

They’ve done some research with B2C and B2B and interviewed people, consumers, and also companies to understand how important was localization in the decision to buy a product. And 40% of consumers will not buy a product if it’s not available in their language.”

About the speaker
Jean-François Vanreusel Adobe, Director of Globalization Member

Passionate leader focused on offering engaging end-to-end experiences to international customers.