Are your hybrid teams feeling disconnected? This is the episode 13 in the 2022 Product Awards series. In this talk, Ubiety Technologies CPO Nacho Andrade speaks with MURAL VP of Product Rosalyn Lemieux. They discuss the ways that MURAL is helping solve the problem of disconnected hybrid teams. And also why Rosalyn dislikes the miscommunication that can happen between product and engineering teams. Additionally, Rosalyn gives insight into how MURAL tries to be a fun company to work with – and for. She says this is enshrined in a company value called “playing to wow.”
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On playing to wow
“What still permeates the culture is the fact that they have these roots and game gaming. Play to wow is one of our values. And it shows up everywhere. Like when we do all hands meetings, it is not uncommon for our CEO, Mariano, to break out in song. And, you know, people take care in meetings to make it engaging and fun for each other. And I think that shows up in the product and the experience of the product.
“We’re trying to wow people. But also the way you wow is by having playfulness in how we work together in the product that we deliver. And in how we interact with our customers. We want it to be fun to work with us and for us. And so it is that little bit of playfulness. And it comes across in 1000 different ways.
“Product marketing has their sort of readout. I want to say it’s bi weekly or something. Of what’s coming now. And they always have this beautiful MURAL that’s some sort of themed thing. You know, they’ll do Jeopardy one week. And it’ll start with a game and the questions are related to upcoming releases. And just silly stuff like that, where it’s like, gosh, someone took a little extra time to make this really enjoyable. And now we don’t mind sitting on this meeting and hearing about the next release.”
On disconnected hybrid teams
“I think the big problem that we’re seeing now is this disconnection in teams. And that’s one of the top issues that CEOs are prioritizing. What do we figure out next? And it’s because it has a serious business impact. I think at the personal level, we feel it as Zoom fatigue or too much talk, too little understanding. And we knew it. We all sat in inefficient meetings in person, but somehow it was a little less painful. So it’s kind of really made it real for everyone. We have to fix this.
“And just we just launched a new category of collaborative intelligence that MURAL is leading on. And really the whole idea behind it is, we need to solve this problem of disconnection. Because it’s having a massive business impact. One estimate is, businesses lose as much as $542 billion a year globally on inefficient meetings. Which just, in your gut, doesn’t that feel right. It’s a lot.
“Something like 85% of employee time is wasted on inefficient collaboration. That sadly also kind of feels right. And we see it too, in our own work. So that’s what we’re really focused on now. And we’ve always had the collaboration space, the MURALs themselves, with collaborative intelligence. Really, what we’re acknowledging is that you need more than the spaces. We’re in this moment where companies have to learn, this is a new skill set of how to do this well, especially in a hybrid world.”
On miscommunication between product and engineering
“My major is platform, with platform teams and building in a platform way. And so my PMs have a somewhat technical role between engineering and the rest of the company. One of the things that bothers me always, in both directions, is when product managers don’t take the time to really understand the underlying technology and how the thing works. And either don’t see opportunities, or don’t really understand how complicated something is to implement. I think, everyone doesn’t need to be an engineer. But you did have big ears and listen, and do your darndest to understand the technology that impacts what you can deliver.
“And then I will just say that it goes both ways. The thing that drives me nuts on the engineering side is when they say, ‘oh, let’s have a separate meeting, because this is too technical.’ What is it secret? Bring us in, help us understand. It has to go both ways. So that’s kind of my pet peeve. I think everyone can do better on that.”
About the speaker
About the host
Big idea product leader specializing in the space between 0 to 1, digital transformation, and innovation.