Hi Tom! What’s your job?
I’m responsible for collecting customer insights, whether that’s existing users or the decision-makers who are responsible for purchasing Tactic. I get involved with some prospective customers too, digging into their research process and the pipeline for their activity whether that’s in sales, marketing, revenue operations or something else. A key part for me is prioritising what we can build that will add as much value for our users as possible. I work with our commercial and engineering teams to check for any blocks in their way and make sure we’re all aligned on what we’re building and why. I leave the ‘how’ to them!
What experience or ambition led you to work for a startup? In other words, where did your journey to here begin?
This has been my career goal for a long time, really. I got interested in working with startups when I was at university and I was part of the UK’s first student-led venture capital fund, Campus Capital. I would meet founders, hear pitches and do research into whether we should invest in them. I fell in love with the startup model of ‘fail quickly, execute quickly, learn quickly, pivot quickly’. In my first few graduate jobs I was always looking to measure my impact, as that’s what drives me. With each job I’ve inched closer to my goal of becoming a software product manager. I made time to read and do extra training on the side. And now here I am!
Aha, so you’ve been playing the long game. And what did you like about Tactic in particular?
It’s funny, ‘search’ seemed done to me, from an outside perspective. Google has such a monopoly. But when I read more into what Tactic does it really related to my pains in sales - I was always working with inaccurate data on unwieldy spreadsheets, and it was tough to align with marketing and cross-function colleagues. So then when I looked into what Tactic offers, I could instantly see the potential for its growth and application, especially for enterprise. And when I interviewed I could also tell it was a really friendly, fast-paced, innovative team.
What are you excited to achieve at Tactic?
I’m excited to get the product to a standard where it really leads our growth. When the product is intuitive enough for users to onboard themselves in the first instance, I think our use cases will increase, our virality will increase and we’ll get so much rich information with which to build on the product.
What feature are you most excited about, current or future?
We have a few epics at the moment which should lead to the effect I just mentioned of product-led growth. I’m really excited about Salesforce Sync, where we can push and pull data between users’ Salesforce and Tactic so their stack is really accurate and connected. And in the future we’re going to find ways to discover new accounts for users, based on their Tactic activity. That’s going to be pretty huge.
Blue sky thinking: what unexpected use case would you love to test?
Honestly, I think all the time that if I had been able to use Tactic as a student when I was researching for essays and coursework, that would have been incredible for me. I would spend hours scrolling through sites and PDFs trying to find the little tiny insights I needed. Imagine how much time students would have to analyse information and work on critical thinking, if they freed up the time spent finding that info in the first place. Gamechanger!
What’s the best part of remote working?
It’s got to be the flexibility. To work at my best I need the time and space to prioritise my health and lifestyle. I feel like remote-first as a principal puts people first - it shouldn’t be radical but it is. In a sales team in an office, it’s actually really hard to concentrate because the people around you are typically high-energy. As a product manager my space to think and work deeply is really important, and it’s easier to achieve that from home. I incorporate the things that matter to me into my day: I walk my dogs, go to the gym and have time to make healthy meals and generally look after myself.
If you could work remotely from anywhere in the world for a week, where would it be?
I actually did this, for six months! I never took time off before or after university, and last year I was in a position to work freelance for six months while doing some skill training and courses. I’m a big surfer so I went to Bali. I was never more than ten minutes away from a surfing beach and I made the most of all the scenery and amazing food. If you’re going to be doing some courses and asynchronous freelance work, why not do it somewhere amazing?!
We’re all sufficiently jealous, so I’m changing the subject… Go-to emojis on Slack?
Ha - I'm an emoji addict! I personally like to highlight people’s work and congratulate them on a good job well done. So I use the rocket a lot 🚀 as a way of complimenting my colleagues.
Top things to pack for a day working in an office space?
Yes - this might sound so old-fashioned, but a pencil and paper! Some people can translate their ideas so quickly into Figma or another program where you can mock-up screens and workflows, but for me the best thing is often to sketch out how I think the product should flow and connect, and I can show those sketches to our designer and engineers - most of the time they can see where I’m coming from! Then they can do their magic.
Dogs or cats?
I am a big dog person.
Burgers or hot dogs?
Mac or Windows?
Mac, no question.
Slack or Zoom?
This is harder… but, Slack.
Film or TV?
City or countryside?
Definitely the city. I’ve lived in the country and it’s a nightmare getting to see friends!
Spring, summer, autumn, winter?
It’s got to be summer for the sake of the good vibes, but I really like winter holidays. I’m a skier.
Interested in joining the Tactic team? Check out our open positions here.