Meet Alex, Trava's Technical Product Manager.
In your words, what is your role at Trava.
My role, to put it a little succinctly, is to have a strong understanding of our platform and how it works so that I can work with our customers as well as the engineering team, and the rest of the business to prioritize features in our roadmap.
Describe Trava in 3 words.
Funny. Just absolutely funny is one of the first words I use, and that's more of a cultural thing because we like to enjoy our work. It's one of our core values. Laughter makes the best work. And ultimately, I cannot think of a time in my career ever where I have laughed this much day-to-day about work and around a serious industry, but we find ways to enjoy it and to not let it weigh us down, like the intensity of the industry and the severity of the consequences of some of the things that happen. So that's really awesome. So that's number one, funny.
Trusting. I have to say that at Trava, I'm really given trust from the team and the rest of the business, especially in my role, that whatever decisions I make are in the best interest of the company. While we might have conversations or someone might present the opposing thought, that's always in the best interest to explore all of the facets of a decision, but ultimately relying on me to be the decision holder. No one's ever shut me down or said, " I'm not sure I'm comfortable until I know more." That's not a thing that really happens here. I get autonomy and I'm trusted.
And then lastly, exciting is probably my third word. I think we work in a really exciting industry, honestly, and there are difficult problems to solve, which is really invigorating for me. And the task of helping our customers and organizations assess and mitigate risk is an extremely pressing one at this point in the world and in the technology industry. And I'm really proud to work on a team that is excited and not afraid to explore these things and problem solve in this area. That's really exciting to me. So my three words have to be funny, trusting, and exciting.
Where is your happy place?
I have to say that my happy place is definitely on a walk outside with my family. So of course my wife, our two sons and our dog, just somewhere with greenery, somewhere outside where we can just get some fresh air and just kind of have a quiet moment as a family. That's always really nice.
If you could give your 13-year-old self advice, what would it be?
Yeah, I think that I've recently come to truly understand the value of this common phrase, and it is “try to create more than you consume.” In the modern world, that's kind of hard. There's a lot out there to consume, but as much as you can try to create more because it leads to a lot more fulfillment for me in the times I'm creating the most. And it doesn't have to be something I'm sharing, just something I'm creating myself are the times I found myself the most successful.
What is your favorite motivational quote?
So I have two favorite motivational quotes, but they are related. The first one is generally attributed to Lawrence of Arabia, and it's “big things have small beginnings.” I think that's a really important one to me that I remind myself, because we get caught up in the day-to-day, and sometimes you lose sight of how important that day-to-day becomes into something large.
And then my second one, I try to find the earliest attribution of it all the time. The earliest attribution I can find is to Gandhi, and it is, " Whatever you do in life will be insignificant, but it's important that you do it." And similarly, we're in the context of a giant world of things happening. Even our industry is not the only industry where work is happening, but you never know what seemingly insignificant thing you do in a day might be important.
What has been your favorite project at Trava?
I really love what I do in product management, specifically at Trava. So I have to say that my favorite project I get to do quarterly and it's roadmapping. And for me, that work of building the roadmap for the company is just really fulfilling and it's really exciting for me. I get the chance to do a roadshow throughout the business and see everyone in all of the departments and in the company. And I get to contextualize the challenges I've heard and the observations they've made in customer behavior with our backlog and our current feature set. That's just a really amazing opportunity that product really gets to get, that a lot of other business functions don't. And so I'm really thankful for that.
Cats or dogs?
This is an easy question for me and it's dogs. All the way dog. I have respect for cats, but I don't think they have respect for me. So dogs.
What is your favorite color?
I have to say I've really enjoyed green, like a sage green or kind of like a forest green.