Winter is here! We know 2020 has been a doozy of a year and Winter may not be as exciting as in other years. However, we’re hoping that the thought of the 2021 Product Awards will keep you cozy during the coming dark nights. If you’ve followed along the last couple of weeks, you’ll know we are introducing the members of our Awards Advisory Board. Next up is one of our favorite podcast hosts and editorial contributors. Let’s get to know the leader of the Build Stage: nate Product Marketing Lead, Patrick Blute.

Getting to know Patrick Blute

Like Conceive Stage leader, Nikki Ahmadi, you may already be familiar with the dulcet tones of Patrick Blute through our podcast, Product Talk. His latest guest is none other than Airbnb Former Chief Ethics Officer, Rob Chesnut. Together, they dive into a topic as current as the reigning pandemic: conscious consumerism and the evolution of integrity in tech. If you missed it, catch the recap here and the full episode on Spotify and iTunes.

In his own words, Patrick is an expert in how to be resilient and is passionate about high quality, compelling narratives. To be honest, we couldn’t agree more. As the Head of Product Marketing at nate, he launches, refines, and evaluates marketing initiatives to drive global product adoption. His prior roles include Senior Vice President of Consumer Products at Tribal Planet, a start-up focused on empowering young people to participate in the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and Digital Consultant at EY, where he worked with corporations across the globe on digital transformation strategy.

On choosing the Build Stage

The first step is having a fantastic idea. Next, comes the design of that idea. Finally, we arrive at the moment when the product comes to life, in the Build Stage. Any product leader who has progressed through the life cycle knows the excitement of seeing a product move from the whiteboard to reality. Patrick shares the reasons why he chose to lead this particular stage of the 2021 Product Awards.

“The Build Stage is one of the most critical parts of the product life cycle. It’s going from the ideation stage to the actual structure of what we are creating. Really, this is where the magic happens. It’s where you translate the designs into the actual product that customers will use.”

“What really gets me excited about the Build Stage, and what we’re looking for this year, is action-focused solutions. Basically, products that have clear, actionable tools that put the needs of the builder front and center. It’s incredibly complex, how many different things line up within the build stage, so it’s about thinking about the product team. Meaning, we’re looking for tools that really help teams through integrations, APIs, and scalability with quality workflows and easy navigation.“

On what makes a great product manager

As one of our podcast hosts, Patrick is typically the one asking the questions. Naturally, we jumped at the opportunity to flip the table. With a lifetime of experience on product teams, Patrick succinctly lays down what truly makes a great product, and what makes a great product manager.

“What makes a great product is that leading into the experience, there’s an anticipation. When using the product, there’s a delight. Finally, when leaving the product experience, there’s something you cannot wait to tell someone else about.

“Sometimes you only get to experience being a user of something. Then, you meet the people behind it, and you understand how much of their heart and mind has gone into this tool.”

“It’s knowing who you’re working with, and how to emphasize their strengths. Also, knowing your customer, how to champion what they need, and being able to turn those two things into actionable tools. I think product leaders are truly in tune with what they’re creating, and with what they’d like to see the people on their team succeed at. Those two things in tandem are what make the best type of leadership.”

On mentoring product teams

As Patrick mentioned, knowing your team and their strengths is crucial to being a great product leader and making great products. Going hand in hand with that is the mentorship of the individuals themselves. We asked our Awards Advisory Board what methods they use to promote mentorship and growth within their teams.

“We do Personal Growth Fridays. Throughout the week, new technologies, platforms, and programs appear that naturally require new learnings. So we take time Friday to specifically focus, learn, and collaborate together.”

On the upcoming 2021 Product Awards

“My entire life with Products That Count has been in this virtual world, and collaborating virtually with this community has been really exciting. It has been awesome to be able to continue networking, meeting folks, and learning throughout this year. Honestly, I’m just really honored to be asked to work with the Awards Advisory Board, and to focus on what really exciting things have occurred this year in the product space.”

“I love the Age of Product as this year’s theme. It’s incredible to see what entrepreneurs will conceive in this new age, and I’m excited to congratulate all the winning teams!”

It’s as succinct and elegant as that, folks. Entrepreneurship and digital innovation walk together and the Product Awards has them in spades. Make sure you get your nominations in for the Build Stage and stay tuned for next week’s member spotlight!

About the speaker
Patrick Blute Transfix, Director of Brand and Sustainability Member

I am the Director of Brand & Sustainability for Transfix, a leading transportation solutions provider, combining tech and a best-in-class carrier network to reshape the future of freight. I am also a host for Product Talk helping bring product leaders together to answer the question: "What makes a great product?"

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