Product Manager #1
An Audacious Mission
Today, coordinating business travel is complex because of competing interests, opaque industry practices, convoluted systems, and bad software.
But we believe that travel is a force-multiplier for growth.
Travel connects teams to new and existing co-workers, partners, and customers. It enables new opportunities, produces unexpected collaboration, and shifts perspectives. That’s why we focus daily on making travel more about why you’re going and less about how you’ll get there.
Our mission is to make in-person collaboration effortless.
We have an opportunity for a product person looking to have a massive impact on the future of our business.
As the first product hire at Pana, you will be responsible for deeply understanding our customers’ needs, iterating on solutions to meet those needs, and delivering detailed specifications on building that product to our engineering team.
Ben Horowitz once said that a good PM is the “CEO of the product”, and that couldn’t be more true for this role. You will be given the freedom and responsibility to make key product decisions that affect outcomes for hundreds of global companies.
This role is perfect for anyone who wants to have an impact at scale and be a core part of the growth of a fast-moving early-stage technology company.
What We Value
You creatively solve problems.
At the root, this is the core job of a PM—create solutions that don’t exist for real problems that people have today. Your curiosity motivates you and your creativity empowers you to deliver the best solutions possible given the constraints of time, money, and resources. You also solve problems for your team by removing roadblocks and filling in gaps.\
You communicate clearly.
You are articulate and clear about your perspective, feelings, and opinions. If a concept is complex, you can break it down by explaining in simpler terms or visually communicating your ideas. People enjoy collaborating with you.
You are disciplined.
You understand that a product’s true differentiations are the 1000s of tiny innovations that users don’t see because the product is simply effortless to use. You recognize that to deliver these innovations, you need to run a consistent and effective loop of listening, understanding, reacting, and executing. You take the initiative to build and iterate on processes that support this discipline.
You can lead without authority.
Engineers don’t work for product managers, but they need to respect and listen to you. You gain this attention by being persuasive, empathetic, and competent in your role. When things go right, you attribute them to your team; when things go wrong, you reflect on how you can improve (See Good to Great by John Collins and “the window and the mirror”).
You are deeply empathetic.
You understand how to listen beyond the “what” of feature requests and dig into the core motivations and emotions of our users. You know how to get users to express the “why” behind their thoughts, and, when they do tell you, you listen to understand.
You have a high rational IQ.
Even when customers give you imperfect information, you can “connect the dots” quickly and form educated hypotheses. However, you always stay “intellectually honest”, i.e., you don’t look for the convenient explanation that allows you to be right. You can break down complex and incomplete problems without becoming overwhelmed.
You are decisive.
Product roles, particularly product roles at startups, are always working with imperfect information. You don’t get stuck in “analysis paralysis”, and you’re able to make quick decisions will all the currently available information to ensure we ship on time. You can weigh passionate inputs from all stakeholders and make clear, unemotional, and informed decisions.
You work hard.
You relentlessly and swiftly execute towards your goals and metrics. You are not afraid of long hours, and you are able to handle stress well and maintain a positive attitude.
- Clearly understand and process feedback from all internal and external stakeholders (engineering, customers, customer success, sales, etc.) in a timely manner.
- Run a company-wide process to enable shipping product our customers love.
- Ensure all stories that engineers are working on have the highest possible impact on the business.
- Enable engineers to execute effectively by ensuring they are working on well-scoped and clearly designed products (as you’ll be our first product hire, you’ll be responsible for both writing specifications and designing wireframes).
The Typical Day
- Spending 30 minutes on the phone with a key customer to understand a frustration they have with the product today.
- Writing clear specifications and building wireframes for the upcoming engineering sprint.
- Running sprint planning and story point estimation with our engineers.
- Prioritizing stories based upon external feedback.
- Ability to work in-person at our office in Denver (we're in RiNo!).
- At least 5 years of experience in a product role at a software company.
- BA/BS (or MA/MS) from a top university or equivalent experience.
- Extensive experience with visual design software such as Figma, Sketch, InDesign, or Illustrator.
- Technical experience preferred, but not required. (We think ex-engineers make great PMs!)