Q&A with Product Manager: Tejas Sakhardande
Hello everyone! I’m Tejas, a Senior Product Manager (PM) at Appian. I’ve been at Appian for more than two and a half years now, and on the Process Engines team for a little over a year. My family and friends often ask me what I actually do at work as a PM at Appian, so below I’m going to tell you all about what it’s like!
Q: Why should someone apply to be a Product Manager at Appian?
A: Since Appian is a leader in low-code, Product Managers, like myself, are not only in the middle of an exciting technology space but also challenged to solve the hardest problems in the industry. At Appian, PM’s work within the Engineering department and are focused on customer success and delivering value with our features. Meaning,I have an opportunity to design enterprise-grade features, define industry trends and work alongside some of the best product managers.
Q: What's something specific about your role as a Product Manager that you enjoy the most?
A: One thing that has always attracted me towards enterprise product management is the variety of personas you build your products for. When I interviewed at Appian, I was excited to know that the company had structured their engineering organization in line with their customer personas. Even though the team has grown overtime, I still value the fact that I can easily target these personas and design features tailored to each of them thanks to the strong foundations laid down by the product team at Appian.
There are many ways customers can give us feedback and even more ways the Product team reaches out to make the product better. In the end, I really enjoy the fact that as a Product Owner, I have the autonomy to take crucial decisions and transparently share that with the team. This sense of responsibility towards the product always encourages the PM’s to choose what is best for the customers.
Q: How have you grown in your role, and what keeps you here?
A: I have been with Appian for more than two and a half years and I have learned more about the industry than in any of the previous organizations I have worked for. I started off working on features to easily extend and integrate Appian with Amazon Web Services with no-code. As I understood more about the industry and the product space, I got to expand my influence over multiple areas of the product, covering things like integrations and our latest low-code data features. In my current role, I get to drive the roadmap for one of the core capabilities of the platform, the engines that drive Appian Process. I also have represented the organization at multiple conferences and have been able to interact with many customers directly to understand their problems and discuss product ideas with them.
Q: In your opinion, what’s unique or special about working at Appian?
A: This may be cliche, but I genuinely love the Appian culture. Everyone has a voice and is respected for their opinions. The company really values my personal growth. Apart from my day-to-day responsibilities, there are plenty of opportunities where I can grow as a professional and also expand my influence in the community. I can use 10% of my work time as learning time and hone my skills. I reserve every other Monday to polish my product management skills and I am also currently learning to analyze data to make better decisions. In addition to that, I am entitled to certain time to work on independent projects that can help the product, which I have used to try and integrate new technologies with Appian. It is fun to get my hands dirty and play around with the code independent of the software development lifecycle.
Q: What do you love doing outside of work? Are there any hobbies/interests you gained from working with other Product Managers?
A: I enjoy hiking, playing video games and trying new food places, especially hot fried chicken. One thing that has rubbed off on me from my Appian colleagues is the love for Legos. I now have more than 10 Lego sets showcased in my living room and I credit Appian for taking me back to my childhood days.
Q: What stands out about being a Product Manager at Appian?
A: The autonomy to make crucial product decisions and the ability to influence a growing industry with your features are two key aspects that motivate me in my role as a Product Manager at Appian. With every Product Manager working on a different challenge, I get to hear different perspectives and solutions, eventually helping me grow in the role. All this combined with the organization's focus on employee growth, really makes Product Management at Appian an exciting place to be.
If this sounds like a role you’re interested in, you’re in luck as we’re hiring Product Managers! Check out our career opportunities on the careers page.