Product is a hell of a wide expression that can mean everything, and nothing at the same time. In big companies, product can be a MASSIVE machine. You sometimes have different product directions, and each of them is basically as big as InterCloud and its 65 people.
So product was definitely a concept to me.
I always envisioned a product team to be a bunch of creative people having amazing shiny complex ideas on paper, and then going with sword and armour to try and make technical teams implement them, while avoiding sales people to sell those products before they even exist.
At InterCloud to represent Product we have our Fantastic Four. I reffered briefly to them in my previous article, they’re the one drawing stuff on the walls with the Legal team.
But beyond that, they know what they are talking (drawing ?) about and they are not the type to let techies make a fool out of them. Actually I sometimes wonder if it is not the other way around…
First let me introduce our Mister Fantastic, I call Jérôme Clauzade, or the guy with the rubber pig. He is the conductor behind the team. He brings his knowledge of the software industry, and embodies the vision of this turn InterCloud is taking lately, moving from a network company to a platform company. As an HR, I try my best to support teams’ management and I have to say, I am pretty impressed with him. He gives them room to be creative, to be who they are so that they can give their best. He’s got three people in his team, and the least I can say is that they each have their own personnality and it is not one you see at every corner.
We have Emile who is one of the living memory of the company. He’s been working at InterCloud since the very begining! He always has a story or a remark to make, for which I have to admit we don’t always get the reference. But he definitely has a wealth of knowledge to share, on every topic, and it is refreshing to be able to learn so much just by having lunch at the same table.
The beating heart of the team definitely is Aida. If you had a rough night out, I really hope you don’t have a meeting with her first thing in the morning because she will have more energy than you can handle. But she puts this energy to good use, she pushes teams to go the extra mile, she believes in the projects for two or three if someone in the team is a bit down. She has the ability to understand technical complexity, and it makes her the best to smooth communication between Product and Engineering.
And finally, we have the last addition to the team, our newbe Erika. Erika is the living proof that we live in a small world. I met her 7 years ago in another professional life, and she reached out to me when she heard we were looking for a Product Marketing Manager. Funny thing is, I was already thinking about her for the job. She will bring the literary aspect in order to build content that can be understood by everyone and help us reach a wider audience. Plus I think she’s the perfect balance between all the personalities and energies we have in the team. And balance is key to perform.
I am not fond of the idea of recruiting clones to have an efficient team. Peformance comes from healthy emulation and the diversity of people grants us that. Best thing is, this idea is supported by the company’s management. There is room for all of us to be who we are, bring our own experiences and learn from others’. The only thing the company’s going to ask from you is to be open minded and to consider what the other has to say, because the right way is somewhere inbetween. So I guess the Product team is a good picture of how stimulating it is to work at InterCloud, as we consider that by making each of us better, we can do better.