Episode 17

Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Inspiring Women Leaders in Tech Startups

Jeanette Dorazio, Chief Executive Officer at Leadpages. Jeanette walks us through key obstacles she overcame in her journey toward becoming a successful female leader in tech.  

In episode 17, Jeanette lays out how to reach the next level of your leadership career. She shares 3 lessons gained through her journey: knowing what is happening in the market, which she calls “outside in” because “nothing important happens in the office,” listening first and understanding all sides before communicating, and finally, understanding how to interpret data.

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Being a a female leader in tech, has, a lot of ups and downs. There's this perception that because I'm nice, I'm soft, right? Because I foster people's career paths and coaching and help people get to their next level, whatever that may be. That I'm not tough, that I can't run a business. So I've had to fight against that perception for a number of years. I think, for me, you know, what, what's helped me get over that perception is my ability to deliver and execute and deliver on what I promise and what I say that has, I mean, just high level, that's, that's what differentiated me as a woman in tech. 

In this episode

Today's guest, Jeanette shares her journey as a woman leader in the tech start-up industry. Learn how she leaned into her empathetic leadership style and how it has helped her in making some hard decisions in her career.  

I’m so excited for you folks to listen to this episode because of her strength and enthusiasm for breaking down barriers and championing the inclusion and success of women in STEM fields. I hope you find this conversation inspiring to explore learning into your own strengths.

Time Stamps

1:54 Episode Introduction

3:56 The Journey as a Female Leader

04:57 How to Hone Into Your Strengths as a Leader

08:58 Challenges and Difficulties Being a Women Leader in Tech

13:24 Making Tough Decisions as an Empathetic Leader

20:45 Insights Into Becoming a Leader | Jeannette's s Story

29:01 Two Leadership Mistakes to Learn From

33:02 How to Mentor in a Hybrid Environment

41:38 A Third Leadership Mistake to Learn From

54:14 Global Work and Talent Competition

1:01 The Three Biggest Lessons for Female Tech Managers

1:09 Things to Obsess About as a Leader to Reach Success

Jeanette Dorazio

Chief Executive Officer with Leadpages

Guest Bio

As the CEO of Leadpages, a no-code website and landing page builder, Jeanette loves helping entrepreneurs turn their business dreams into a reality. She knows first-hand what it takes to run a successful business through her experience holding various executive-level positions at leading organizations, including enterprise software and cloud technology company, Oracle; social-commerce startup, 8thBridge; global electronic payments solution leader, Verifone; and global data and software services company, Solera. As a woman in tech, Jeanette is passionate about breaking down barriers and championing the inclusion and success of women in STEM fields.


Jeanette (00:00):

Being a female leader in tech, has a lot of, ups and downs. I think one of the things, when you asked me this question, when we, when we talked about it, the thing that came to mind right away for me was, there is this perception that because I'm nice, I'm, I'm soft, right? and let, let me unpack that a little bit by, by what I mean. So, my leadership style is, very much an empathetic leader, leader, always have been servant, servant leadership style. it's how it's evolved over time, and it's kind of what I'm known for, right? Yeah. but there is this perception based off the, depending on the company I've been in, that because I'm an empathetic leader, because I foster, people's career paths and coaching and, helping, helping people get to their next level, whatever that may be, that, that I'm not tough, that I can't run a business. so I've had to fight against that perception for, a number of years. I think, for me, you know, what, what's helped me get over that perception, is my ability to deliver, and execute, and deliver on what I promise and what I say. that has, I mean, just high level, that's, that's what's differentiated me as a, as a woman in tech.

Fahd (01:54):

Hello and welcome to the Unicorn Leadership Podcast. My name is Fahd Alhattab and I am your host On this podcast, it's where we interview leaders on their journeys of building high performing teams, of starting companies, of scaling companies, and everything in between on how to be an effective leader. Our goal is to bring you the insights, the tools, the stories, so that you don't make all the same mistakes that our guests have. Or maybe you do make the mistakes, but you find a way to get past them. You find a way to work through them during those difficult times. This podcast is brought to you by Unicorn Labs and where we transform managers into leaders that create high performing teams that scale. And you can check it out@unicornlabs.ca when we're excited, because in this episode, we bring you exactly what we promised with Jeanette, Jeanette Dozo, the C e O of Leadpages, a no-code website, and a landing page builder.

Jeanette's gonna share her journey as a woman in, uh, a woman leader in the tech startup industry, and actually how she got into tech and her journey from starting at, you know, target and leading teams there to getting in, into tech, to becoming a product manager, to working her way up all the way to c e o, and now leading phenomenal team. We're gonna learn how she actually leans into her empathetic leadership style, and how it has helped her make some really difficult decisions in her career, but at the same time has sometimes been criticized for it. I'm excited for you to all listen to this episode because of the strength and enthusiasm that she brings in breaking down barriers and championing the inclusion and success of women in STEM fields. I had a phenomenal time recording the episode with Jeanette, and I believe you're gonna have fun time being able to go through it. So, let's cut to another little clip here to hear more from Jeanette. But

Jeanette (03:56):

What that has helped me to realize is, you know what? Everybody has a role to play in the team. sometimes you're more active, than others. and sometimes you don't get to go to the big show, and that happens. And so, I try to think of that as I'm having to make these hard decisions, right? you know, how is this gonna get us to our next strategic initiatives or, you know, where the company wants us to be? What are our goals? And, you know, bringing that all together. And what I, what I try to do as much as possible is treat those folks,  as you have to move them out with dignity. and know that you know what this is, this is not gonna be a good day, good day in their life, right?  and you have to treat them with kindness and respect Yeah. and help them, get to their, whatever their next, venture's gonna be.

Fahd (04:57):

At each stage of Jane's career, she walks us through different obstacles that she had to overcome in her leadership journey of becoming successful leader in tech. And she's gonna offer insights and tips on how to lean into your strength as a female leader strength, how some strengths can come off as a weakness to society, but how to reframe that and still work through it. She also identifies ways where you can drive successful growth as you learn to lean into your leadership style. It's phenomenal to see, because she talks about leaning into strengths, leaning into leadership styles, really leaning into who you are, and finding ways to win within a position of strength. And in listening to this episode, if you come across thinking, Hey, I, I might need to do a, what is my leadership style? What are my strengths? What is my personality?

If you find yourself wanting to answer these questions and looking for assessments that you could use or your team could use, feel free to connect with us at unicornlabs.ca. We have a number of assessments and personality assessments and team assessments that you can use to help you hone in on your strength and lean into it so that you can lead at your best. See, Janette's advice is that she likes to lead. And for her, her strengths are to lead with empathy, to build relationships, and to individualize your leadership approach to the person's needs, motivations, and wants. In this episode 17,  she lays out h how to reach the next level of your leadership career if you're going from one stage to the next. And she shares three insights on her journey. One, it's about knowing what's happening in the market, which she calls outside in when she says, cuz nothing important happens in the office.

You gotta get out there and you gotta figure it out. So, so, get out and listen to the customer and figure out what your customers want, what their problems are. Secondly, she talks about listening first and understanding all sides before communicating, really seeking to understand as a key part of our leadership. And lastly, she literally gets into data analytics and being able to interpret data as a necessary technical skill for all leaders. So, without further ado, tune in to hear the insightful tips from Janette's experience. And if you'll like what you hear, feel free to let us know. And any of our social media handles @FahdAlHattab, leave us a review for the podcast on your app of choice. Give us a five star share the word, but most of all, have fun as you listen to this episode. And without further ado, let's jump in and hear from Jeanette Dozo. All right, Jeanette, welcome to our Unicorn Leadership podcast. I'm really excited to have you. we spoke a little while back and we talked about bringing you on the show to talk about your leadership experience, your men's leadership experience in the tech industry, in the tech world, and your leadership experience as a woman leader. And so I'm really excited to have you. Thank you for taking the time to be here with us today.

Jeanette (08:03):

Thank you. I'm excited to be here.

Fahd (08:05):

Awesome. Awesome. So, I wanna kick us right off, as we always do in our, in our episodes, we wanna get to the meaty question that we're all here for. I want to hear from you, okay. What are the challenges and the, the, the difficulty that comes uniquely with women leadership and women leadership in tech, in startups, when you're building, you're growing and you're creating something that's, you know, trying to go to the moon and trying to build that, that unicorn, trying to, whatever it is, the challenges that come with being a female leader in that tech space. I'd love for you to unpack that for me and for our audience.

Jeanette (08:49):

Oh, sure. Kind of a loaded question there. Yeah.

Fahd (08:56):

Yeah. Very. I'm very much,

Jeanette (08:58):

I'm, I'm, I'm up, I'm up for the challenge. So, being a, a women, a female leader in, in tech, has, you know, a lot of, ups and downs.  I think one of the things, when you asked me this question, when we, when we talked about it, the thing that came to mind right away for me was, there is this perception that, because I'm nice, I'm, I'm soft, right? Mm.  and let, let me unpack that a little bit by, by what I mean. So, my leadership style is, very much an empathetic leader, leader, always have been servant, servant leadership style. it's how it's evolved over time, and it's kind of what I'm known for, right? but there is this perception based off the, depending on the company I've been in, that because I'm an empathetic leader, because I foster, people's career paths and coaching and, helping, helping people get to their next level, whatever that may be, that, that I'm not tough that I can't run a business.

so I've had to fight against that perception for, a number of years. UI think,  for me, you know, what, what's helped me get over that perception,  is my ability to deliver, and execute, and deliver on what I promise and what I say. that has, I mean, just high level, that's, that's what's differentiated me as a, as a woman in tech.  have I had gender,  problems, you know, here and there over time.  but I didn't let that, you know, permeate in and stop anything. I just, you know, doubled down and, really, you know, looked at the environment and, you know, if, if, if a gender issue came up, try to try to figure out, well, you know, where's that coming from? Why is this happening? and when it did, a lot of times it was because I didn't do something.

I didn't deliver on something I said I would. But, but yeah, that, that's, that's the biggest thing for me when you ask me that question, is, you know, what are the differences and what are my challenges? That's, that's the biggest one.  yeah. It's, it's become much better, I would say since pandemic as, you know, the whole work, work, home life, balance is kind of melded together, right? People are working where they live, and really empathetic leadership has come to the forefront. and it, it's, I don't know if it's a skill other than, you know, part of who I am and what makes me, you know, who, who I am as a leader, as a person. so little bit. It's become more accepted now. and yet again, versus, hey, that was a soft skill, right? It's, is, is can, can she really sit at the table with everybody else and represent and run that business?

Fahd (12:14):

Yeah. You know, that's, that's, that's really interesting cuz because, you know, the way you phrased it and the way you put it here, Janet, it's almost as if any empathetic leader might, might face some of those issues, right? Absolutely. You know, despite gender, any empathetic issues might at leader might have this like, well, can you actually lead. And so what I'm, what I'm hearing and what I'm reading in between Alliance is there's, people wanna know whether you can make the difficult decisions.

Jeanette (12:43):


Fahd (12:44):

Right? Like, can you make the, can you make the tough call if you're empathetic and you are nice, but it comes to a moment where you have to make a hard decision, are you gonna do it? Or are you gonna like dance around it? Absolutely. So help me, help me through that talk. Talk me through how did you come to being able to make some, some of these difficult decisions, some of these hard decisions. Was there, was there a hard or difficult decision that was a defining moment for you that even helped you see beyond your empathetic leadership to see that, like, empathy doesn't just mean being nice, but also means taking care of the necessary team, which means making difficult decisions. Was there a moment for you in there?

Jeanette (13:24):

Sure. Oh, you know, the, there, there's been a few. I think the one that comes, top of mind that, almost any leader I know struggles with, and it's, it's probably very applicable right now, is when you have to make a hard decision around,  cutting costs, right? And a lot of times cost equals people, you know, businesses, there's cycles. They go up and down.  you know, we're in an environment right now where, you know, you, you see the news and you see,  I mean, I can't pick up a storydaily. There's, there's some company that, that's had to make that hard decision. and for me, that, that was a, you know, a, a few years ago where I was, I was leading a very large strategic group, within the company I was working for.

And, I, you know, the, the, the directive came down. We, we had to make some decisions on, on people. And for me, uh, it, you know, it was hard as an empathetic leader, but, but I understand it that I understood the task that, that I had to undertake to do that. you know, how did I do that? Being an empathetic leader, is, is I made the hard decision, right? I, I had to take a look at, my team, what the output was, how that was lining up with the strategy of where the company was going. and ultimately, you know, I, I hate saying it comes down to a list, but you know, it, it comes down to you having to make a choice between, some folks and who's gonna help you get there, right? I often equate it to, uh, you know, I grew up as an athlete.

so there were several times where, you know, I was part of a team that, you know, we were doing well and we went to, state championships, national championships. What sport, what sport did you play? Uh, there's several of 'em. I played, uh, oh my goodness. I played, uh, basketball, softball, uh, volleyball, soccer, oh, wow. You name it, I play it. It was mostly my basketball and my, uh, softball teams that usually were going on to state and national championships. Cool, cool. and it was, uh, what I, what I admired about my coaches that I had, during that time is they were very honest, and very open and transparent and would tell us that, listen, a team, we utilize everybody's strengths. the strengths of the individuals make up the team and is what makes us successful and important.

and they're going to use those strengths of the people on the team that are gonna get us to win those champions to championships, whether it's state or national. which is hard to hear as a young person, right? Yeah. As, as a young, uh, young, young person growing up. but what that has helped me to realize is, you know what? Everybody has a role to play in the team. sometimes you're more active, than others. and sometimes you don't get to go to the big show. and that happens. And so, I try to think of that as I'm having to make these hard decisions, right? you know, how is this gonna get us to our next strategic initiatives or, you know, where the company wants us to be, what are our goals? And, you know, bringing that all together.

And what I, what I try to do as much as possible is treat those folks, as you have to move them out with dignity, and know that, you know what this is, this is not gonna be a good day, good day in their life, right? and you have to treat them with kindness and respect. Yeah. and help them, get to their, whatever their next, venture's gonna be, or the next chapter in their life. Mm. Everybody's different, right? You kind of have to, depending on what your role is, in those type of events. But, I've found, again, treating people with respect, humility, you know, put yourself in their shoes. it's, it's not a good day. I've in their shoes. So, yeah. I do have some, some practice on that, some empathy on that side. But, that, that's, that's how I've approached, you know, one of those very tough decisions where, I know I was being wa uh, monitored and watched to see, you know, can she make those difficult decisions?

Can she do that?  and then what's the outcome on the other side, right? Because there's, there's the event that happened, but then how does the team that's left react? How do you re how do you reset expectations? How do you, provide that positive leadership message so that they can go forward and not get stuck into what just happened?  I think that's, you know, the, the, the, any that, that entire scenario's hard as it is, but, you know, got, you have to remember, there's two parts to that. There's the people that are affected, there's the team that's left, and how do you lead them through that, to that, you know, that next chapter and what you need, need to do is, is, is, is important. It's key. Yeah.

Fahd (18:56):

Yeah. You know, one of the, one of the through lines that I'm hearing in your leadership kind of ability here that I really like is, you, you, you had to learn to perhaps own your empathetic leadership style despite the fact that people might have told you, oh, you're being too nice, or, you're too, and that's often what happens to young leaders. That's what ha happens to a lot of, women leaders who are told you, you need to be more tough. You need to be more dominant. You need to be more this, and they pull themselves out of their own natural style to try and reform their leadership style to what someone else thinks. But you, you leaned into your empathetic style. I did. And used that to make the hard decision, because cuz what I'm hearing is like, yeah, I had to let some good people go, but the entire time you told me about how you did it in such an empathetic way.

And I think Absolutely. That is so brilliant for, for people who are listening here, to hear that is that, is that despite people thinking you might shift your need to shift your style, you can still hone in and allow your, your leadership style to be your strength, but counterbalance it and within your strength too, right?  absolutely. Absolutely. I really like that. I, I think that's absolutely. That's awesome. So I, I'm gonna keep going down this path cuz I think there's some really good stuff. But before we do that, I want people to know a bit of the amazing story that is Jeanette, kind of the, the goodness, the, the come up. So we learned a little bit about your, your sports world and your sports life. Yeah. Tell me a little bit about your roots. Where, where, where are you from? Where, where were the beginnings? Where were the humble beginnings? and let's hear about how did you come to the insights and the, the become the leader that you are today? Because I think so often many of us are on this journey of leadership and we look at people who have had more experience and we wanna be there, but perhaps there's been many learnings and failures and troubles along the way, and moments where maybe you didn't always hone into your strengths.

Jeanette (20:45):

Right? Right, right. Oh goodness. Okay. Let's start from the beginning. born and raised in Minnesota. So, I have been very fortunate, to, I, I haven't had to relocate. I've, in Minnesota, the Minneapolis, St. Paul area is a great, bastion of, major, major corporations as well as we've got a nice little tech community here too. so I've, I've, I've been fortunate so far to, to be able to stay here. Although we just got, done with, I don't know, about two feet of snow that dumped on us. Oh my

Fahd (21:21):


Jeanette (21:21):

Yeah. The past 48 hours. So I feel like I'm in Buffalo, New York. I, I dunno what's going on here, but, so, you know, I, your, your question is good, right? You know, how how did I become to be a, a, a leader and get into leadership?  you know, I'm the oldest of, of four siblings. I What do

Fahd (21:45):

You have, brothers, sisters?

Jeanette (21:47):

I have two sisters and a brother. That's awesome. and I was, I was, you know, my mom put me in that leadership position, right? It's, you know, whether it's, uh, you know, I'm wrangling one of my younger sisters, or I had to help her,  with something she was doing. And, a lot of times too, I, I was the babysitter. I was the afterschool babysitter after I got to be a certain age. my sports usually didn't start till, you know, after five o'clock. so there's this period of time my mom and my dad work, work split shifts. so instead of paying a babysitter, I had, I got to do that. So,  you know, there's, there's a lot of leadership skills that come into play in there. Yeah. especially if, if I was having to referee some, you know, a fight that breaks out or, or

Fahd (22:37):

Whatever, you know,

Jeanette (22:40):

but, you know, combine that with, you know, I gravitated towards whether, you know, I was a girl scout. so I always, you know, depending on what, what events we were doing or whether it was camping or boating or, you know, whatever was going on in the Girl Scouts at the time, I always found myself in, in that lead position. you know, the good, the, the scout leaders would always, they, they knew they could come on me to do, you know, whatever it is. You know, Hey, Jeanette, can we go round up, those cases of cookies? We have it's Girl

Fahd (23:15):


Jeanette (23:15):

Season right now. or I, you know, I need you to lead this. you know, we're gonna split into teams and I need you to, to lead this team. So you know, I had opportunities like that.

Fahd (23:30):

Know, I, I think perhaps that's why, we got along so well right away. I was, I wasn't a, a boy scout. I did, I did, camps. I was part of the boys girls SLS and camp Yeah. And camps. Yep. And so I think maybe that's why you and I right away clicked, because Yep. Whenever you meet a kindred soul that way, they're like, you were a camp kid, for sure. I hear you. You spent some time, you know, outdoors with other people wrangling and making fires and doing things. So that, that's awesome. I'd love to hear that. Yeah. Good.

Jeanette (23:56):

Yeah. Yeah. So, you know, that involved in athletics, which, which we talked about,  a lot of great coaches that I had growing up. and it was probably, oh, probably late, early high school where I realized it just kind of clicked with me that, you know what, I'm, I'm pretty good at this. I like it. I like being the leader. there's this great responsibility that I have, you know, it's that quote, you know, with great, great responsibility, you know, comes empathy, et cetera, et cetera. Right. You're, you're, you're, you're in charge of it. So, so I just had a real, real knack for that. you know, and I storytelling here, kind of going into college, same thing. I was, you know, I did work study, I worked in the counselor's office and stuff, and, you know, I was,  quickly moved up to, you know, lead aid, right?

Yeah. And she, she's, she's pretty dependable. And, you know, she, she handles, it was interesting, my, the, the person I was working with at the time, she was, I think she was the lead secretary for the whole area, for the counselor's office. and I remember her saying specifically, we can count on Jeanette. She's really good with confidential information, and she gets stuff done. And I thought, Hmm, okay. Life skill right there. that, that's a good one. but, you know, going my whole, even my college, time in college and, you know, I, I actually was on a business path and I switched over to political science. Weird. Hmm. I know, some people, but what I liked about political science was the critical thinking. you know, a lot of, I wrote a lot of papers and essays and, thought leadership articles,  and really putting my brain into a different spot than just, you know, hey, I'm in an economics class, learning about, you know, economic strategy and managerial leadership, which is important.

but it really wasn't, it wasn't lighting my, my passion. So, you know, took that and went into, you know, I worked for Target, early in my career. you know, they're headquartered here. I think half my family worked there at one point, in various different, areas within Target. Yeah.  but, getting those leadership opportunities within Target too. I worked in the warehouse. I worked in, accounts payable. I worked, I was on the team that,  launched the Super Target project when they first got into grocery. very small team that got put together, on that. And I had such a thirst for learning. I wanted to learn as much as I could, as fast as I could. to the point, I remember one of my, one of my annual reviews at Target, I was far excelling where they thought I would,  and I was told, you know, we could give you, you know, you should, we, we should be giving you a raise. We should be putting you here. But that's not what everybody does. So we've gotta keep you with the pack, which just pissed me off because I, I wanna go faster. I wanna do more. Yeah.

Fahd (27:27):

Yeah. well, I'm out, I'm outperforming the pack. Why do you have to, right. Why do you have to keep me the pack? Yeah.

Jeanette (27:33):

and some of that, you know, there's no fault of Target at all.  no. Fantastic pace of work. It's just, larger companies, right? There's, they, they just, they, they have their process. They have, you know, your path that they want you to be on, and, moving you to those next levels. I'm just, I was just a little faster than they anticipated. yeah. Which, which is fine. You know, it's, it, it's great. I also, the, the key thing is I also, had the, just the opportunity to work with some fantastic leaders. and I Target was fantastic where they, encouraged, seeking out mentors and sponsors. and they allowed you to do that and gave you the space to do that. and I had some fantastic mentors,  as I was growing in my career and trying to understand what's good leadership versus what's bad leadership. so I learned very quickly.

Fahd (28:35):

Yeah. So maybe, maybe take me through that. Gimme, gimme what were, what were some of the early kind of management manager leadership mistakes that, you went through with Target? So you, you're gun ho, you're brilliant. You've got some leadership experience when you were young, you got all this stuff, you were running, you're go, go, go. And so what were, what were some of the pitfalls? What were some of the obstacles? What were some of the, oh, I did this?.

Jeanette (29:01):

Oh, good question. oh, boy. relationship building was a big one.  not that it got me into trouble necessarily, but,  I had this perception, expectation kind of whatever you call it, that as I was doing well, and that as I was executing and delivering and, you know, helping my team, whatever team I was on, at the time at Target, helping them succeed, which was great. It wasn't going to get me to the next level in leadership that I was looking for. So what, what does that mean? Right? What, what's the next lit level in leadership? So you can lead projects, you can lead, one or two, you know, people, maybe a smaller team, you're a team lead, a supervisor. But, you know, I wanted to sit in the big chair, right? I I wanted to, yeah, yeah, yeah.

I wanted to,  build a successful business and a team, right? within the bigger business. and so that's more people, more responsibility. So how, how do, how do I get to that, right? and I know a lot of young people that I mentor today ask me that question, right? You know, I, I, I wanna be there, right? I wanna do that. it's relationship building for me, that was the building that, that was the big aha moment, stumbling black that I hit that, I needed.

Fahd (30:36):

So you were doing enough of it? You weren't

Jeanette (30:38):

Spending, it was not, Nope. I didn't know.

Fahd (30:40):

Very task oriented. Like, just get the

Jeanette (30:42):

Job done, do

Fahd (30:43):

This, do that. And you didn't know how, explain that one. What it, what, you know, like,

Jeanette (30:50):

I, so, there, there, it's, it's one thing, I was very good at, interacting, working as a team, right? you know, always works, you know, the, the works well with others piece that you see on, on, you know, whether it was your report cards in school or your annual reviews that you had, works well with others, gets along perfect, you know, best team person you could have.  but I didn't know how to, promote myself. I didn't know how to, I was scared to go talk to other people just out of the blue, and start that conversation, and ask them, you know, what do you do here? what do you like about your job? I mean, it just starts with those things, those, those, those key pieces. the second piece of that is knowing where I wanted to go.

How do I, how do I gain knowledge? How do I get access to those people where on the outside they look like they're untouchable? Right? Yeah. that was, that was a key learning for me. So it wasn't necessarily a misstep, but one of those pieces where, you know, I was getting the point where I was hitting the wall, hitting the wall. Yeah. Okay. How do I go beyond that? Right? And so this is, this is before LinkedIn. This is before, some of those tools that we have now that make that a little bit less kind of ski. Yeah. Some people used to say. But, but yeah, relationship building is, is, is a key, key thing.

Fahd (32:26):

Do you find that, that with teams being more remote, that managers and directors are struggling with that maybe more?

Jeanette (32:33):

Absolutely. You know? Yeah. I, it's, it's

Fahd (32:37):

Interest. You're not, you're not bumping into people in the, or the team event as much, right? The ha like all this, the, the, the opportunities for those. Cause when your head's down, just working, getting your stuff done, you're not, you're not looking up, you're not, Nope. You're not seeing those. What what do you think about that? What do you do for that? Now? What do you suggest to you, the people that you mentored now about kind of the, the reality of their situation in relationship building?

Jeanette (33:02):

You almost have to put twice the effort into it, right? And you're, you're, you're spot on. I'll, I'll give you a good, a good story. So, when, I was hired into Lee Pages, so my current role, and everything you've just heard about me, right? My relationship building, I'm very much the extrovert. I, I wanna get to know people. I'm a, you know, servant, servant slash empathetic leader. Okay?  I get my cues from being right, right in the same room with somebody, that got turned on its head. Now, I've always worked with, you know, I've managed teams, engineering teams, and India, Belarus, right? so I, I knew how to work remotely. it just was, it was different coming from my, you know, my role now as, as leading a company. Yeah.

Right. You know? Yeah. so I had to take a step back and think, all right, how am I gonna do this new ceo? They were just acquired. How, how do I do this? and I went right back to basics, right? I tried to ignore the screen in front of me, the two-dimensional and tried to build that relationship in the two-dimensional, but in the two dimensional, but in a three-dimensional space. So what does that mean? it's talking to people often, it's doing virtual coffees. The very first two weeks of my job with Leadpages, I did one-on-ones with every single person in the company, as well as the parent company that owns us, right?  started that relationship building. so it was a combination of, a lot of Zoom calls. we have a great slack culture.

So it is, I check in, right? sometimes it's me being funny, showing them my humility, being transparent too, that, that, that's key to this, to the virtual world, and not excluding people. I think that's the hardest thing, right? How do you, you know, Leadpages is a hybrid environment, so how do we, how do we promote a sense of inclusivity, when you have people remote, right? So you know, I, I tell a lot of our early career managers, it's, it's what you used to do in person time times, you know, times 10, right? Check in with people off and see how they're doing. be real. Yeah. Right? Just be real. How's it, how's it going? you'll get a sense right away how people, you know, where they wanna put the barriers up and what they wanna say. but yeah, I, I've, it's, and what I find too is when people come into the hybrid space, they're so used to being remote, it takes 'em a while to, to get back into the groove, right? I have to remind myself, all right, Jeanette, don't get into people's faces, right? Just, just let 'em settle a little bit, before you get, all excited and, you know, start chatting with them. But, yeah, it's, it's, it's been a challenge for sure.

Fahd (36:25):

Yeah. Yeah. So relationship building was a big lesson and a challenge for you as you moved up in your leadership roles and Targets. That was one challenge. What was the other challenge for you as a leader? What were another, well, it was maybe a, a piece of, yeah. A mistake you made or a piece of feedback that you constantly had to work through, during those early years.

Jeanette (36:47):

Hmm. Oh, let's see. A piece of feedback. good question. Early years. Let's see. I,  there, there was, I'm thinking of a time in particular where, early leader, meaning early leader, meaning I had a, I had a couple direct reports, and this was at a, I had moved on from Target. I had gone to a different company, a smaller company. and yeah, so I was, I was given a leadership role in having to manage a couple people. and my big misstep I did, uh, is I made the assumption that they were just like me. What does, what does that mean, right? not blonde hair from Minnesota,, but just how their personality style, how they work. you know, mindset. I was so caught up in wanting to be the best coach, and to help them and get them where they needed to go.

That I mistepped and it resulted where, you know, they, they got upset. They were frustrated with me. They wanted to quit. you know, they went to my boss. and just all of these kind, horrible things were coming out. Uh, that just shocked me. and really, as a leader, had me take a step back and really look at, all right, how did I, what was I doing? How did I, where was the misstep? What can I learn from this?  and that's the big thing. Not everybody's like me. Everybody has a different personality type, uh, you know, which, which inherently I knew somewhere,

Jeanette (38:54):

People learn at different levels, at different speeds. Yeah. there's different types of, of workers, right? There's, there's people that are, you know, self-directed. You don't have to tell them what to do. there's some that just, you know, they're, they're very tactical. they just like, you know, I like to do this task, then this task and this task. And that's how they show success. and I remember having a conversation with my boss,  and, you know, full transparency, I just cried. because I, you know, my, my, my purpose wasn't to hurt them. I wanted to help them, but I actually did the opposite. so, you know, fast forward a number of years and,  you know, I, I still have to remind myself, you know, okay, Jeanette, not everybody's like you. and, you know, I really key into, listening too, cuz I, I didn't listen first,  at that time, I just went right ahead and, oh, here's what's works for me. So I made some assumptions, and that was a key moment in my leadership career that, you know what? You need to step back. You need to listen first. you need to assess Yeah. where they wanna go, and how do they wanna be led, right? I think that's, that's a key thing that's sometimes hard to pick up. Um, and how you're putting together a team.

Fahd (40:27):

Yeah. Yeah. That's such a good, such a good, so we got, you got, we got Jeanette's two biggest mistakes. Number one, relationship building and learning how to do that. And number two, really being able to, to individualize her coaching approach. right? To each person's personalities and their needs and their learning styles and their wants. Right? You're a very achievement, at least what I can tell, achievement oriented individual, right? You want to go, go, go get the next thing. And some people are very happy with where they are, and they are. And we might not be like, why? Why are you happy where you are? You can have so much more, right? Like, that's, that's, that's where some of us, some of us are at. so then gimme the, because life happens in threes, or I like to say they do, gimme the third, uh, the third big mistake maybe. Was there one around, certain leadership decisions or business decisions or strategic decisions that you had to make? You know, we had one about relationship building, one about individual management was there any around kind of direction setting that, you know, a faulty step, or maybe, you know, I don't know. I don't know. You know. Yeah. Feel free. I'm, I'm, I'm framing it for you, but you tell me if it was, if, if anything happened in there.

Jeanette (41:38):

Oh, I, I, I have a, I, I've, one comes to top of mind. So in my,  prior company to coming to, to Leadpages, I was,  my mission was to build a customer success team. something that this business unit never had,  kind of brand new,  honestly, I had never built one either. but I, I had, led and managed customer support teams. So this was taking that and just kind of emphasizing it, right? Turning it on its head a little bit, a little bit more. It can, traditional account management, right? I'm up for the task. so working with, with my boss and some finance people. And, you know, putting together the proposal. What does this look like? What's the, team size, the makeup, the job descriptions, right? Just all these tactical things that you're, you know, Hey, go build this team.

Um, here's your budget, right? and here's, here's what you need to do. Um, so one piece of this, as I just mentioned, was job descriptions. So what are we gonna pay these people, right? how are they gonna be incented? What are the goals that they wanna hit? Um, so, you know, great project I had, um, I had a couple mile leaders. We, we built this project out. Um, and, there's a couple schools of thought with customer success. Speci, specifically in, in SaaS companies, is, um, their compensation. Do you have lower base pay, higher incentive comp? Sometimes if you do that, you get a bit of a more salesy type bent. You're not necessarily taking care of the customers as fully as you want to, but it is a strategy, second strategy. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> mm-hmm. <affirmative> higher base pay lower incentive com.

But your focus is on the customer. I want you to make that customer successful. I assumed we had alignment across, you know, finance, my boss, his bosses, as far as what we wanted to set that compensation at, you know, I had some emails, some sign off. Great.  turns out at the end of the day,  after we had implemented it, after we had hired people, we get into a situation where I'm doing a yearly business review. And, you know, I've got a finance person that kind of beelines into that line item and says, hang on, when did this happen? oh, crap. Right? And just, you know, I have to backtrack on what's going on. Where did you know, I had to look and say, okay, where did I miss, an internal queue, some communication to where they wanted base pay, higher incentive comp, versus the way I had said it.

Yeah. At the end of the day, nobody was, nobody was impacted. It was all good. but, you know, I, I had to take a hit on that one. and I owned up to it, right? It, it wasn't my manager's fault, it wasn't the people who were, you know, our, our employees and that team. that was, that was a miss on me. Yeah. You know, and, and how do you, I I think for me it was how do you come back from that knowing that, you know, it, it can impact people, right? And, how that's gonna go, but knowing that, you know, Hey, we've got business targets to reach. So at the end of the day, learned a huge lesson, around, compensation, again, making sure that you've got some sign up on all levels.

And that doesn't, it doesn't matter what your organization or how large it is, right? It could be very large, more of a corporate to even small startup.you know, I was in a startup for a couple of years and, you know, where your budgets are,  you know, not as plentiful perhaps, or, you know, you're going on the next deal that you can sign, and is key dish to have, you know, compensation wise, how, how are we gonna, how are we going to, not only pay these people, but incentive, right? How do, how do we incentivize them? How do we, how do we keep them passionate about it? So, so yeah. that, that was my third big one that, I,  I tripped up on.

Fahd (46:15):

I think that's a phenomenal lesson. I think it's such a, it's such a key lesson for our startup leaders. You know, often we say this with our startup leaders, not just our founders, but anyone in a startup, if you're a leader, revenue control, revenue and cost controls are everyone's business. Absolutely. Not just finance, business, business. If you're a manager and you've taken on a, a leadership role, especially with a startup where it lives and dies with its cash flow over the next two to three months, yeah. You've gotta, you've, everyone has to care about revenue and cost

Jeanette (46:45):

Control. Absolutely.

Fahd (46:46):

and really alignment on that. So I think that's sad. That's really cool. So you shared with us some of your, some of your mistakes and some of your journey. And we went to Target, you went another company. You were at a startup. tell me a little bit about that career trajectory and then where you are today at Leadpages, and then we'll get, come back to some of our, our, our, our kind of questions. So what was that? yeah, what was that career? What was that career trajectory?

Jeanette (47:10):

So it's the arc, my story arc. so, a lot of people ask me how I got an attack, right? Yeah. You were working in retail and Target and, huh, you know, what, what, you know, got some great,  I, I think I took almost every single class Target offered on their internal training, for leaders. oh yeah. Every single one of them. But, I got into tech. I was working on a project at Target where, they were implementing a, a new system in their transportation area. And, having, you know, I was working in there, they asked me to be a business analyst, right? With the third party company that we were using to implement it. So, I started doing that, right? And I was representing the users and how do we use the system and whatever our processes are.

And, you know, it was, it was chance to lead a larger project. and I loved it. just, you know, the fact that I was using technology to solve problems, was pretty cool. So, a, local software company, which was later acquired by Oracle, they did software applications for retailers,  worldwide.  and they were looking for a product manager to lead,  to, to build their store inventory management system. It was early mobile devices. they had one customer, they knew there was something there. Right? Now, when you walk into a retail store and you see people taking inventory, you know, they're on phones or on, you know, headsets, all kinds of things. and so I thought that was interesting, and there's a couple friends I had there, and I applied and, you know, I thought, I'm not gonna get this job right. what, what do I know? they hired me. I had no idea what

Fahd (49:00):

She, a target. She knows, she knows everything.

Jeanette (49:02):

I guess, right? She, she knows, I had no idea what a product manager was. I was tech savvy, and I knew retail, so I thought, all right, we're gonna put this together. and, you know, I just, I just tried things, right? I just, I just went for it. that was how I got into technology. I built a,  my, my, it wasn't just me, but the team I was working with, we built to store inventory management system on Java technology, which was, that was like cutting edge at the time, or it was early two thousands. I had teams that were doing early, the early predecessor to agile development methodologies. and as my journey, as I kept moving in product management and technology and, you know, meeting retailers all over the world, I was getting more and more responsibility.

So first it was, you know, a a 10 million revenue product, and then it, they added, okay, Jeanette executed on that. We're doing good. Okay, let's give her warehouse management systems. Let's give her, you know,  replenishment systems. So I had PhDs reporting into me with my team, which, you know, can, can get a little bit daunting, but it was fantastic, right? It just so fun to learn. then I was getting leadership opportunities global, which was really cool for me.  you know, we talk about how sometimes it's tough with women in technology add women in technology in a global role. Yeah. it gets even more difficult. and, I took some great, great classes, talked to a lot of people. you know, when, when I'm working with teams in

Fahd (50:55):

Media, well, what, what are some of those? Yeah. What are some of those challenges at a global level? Like Sure. You know, a women, women in global. Yeah. Let's, let's unpack that a

Jeanette (51:03):

Bit. Well, and it's, and it's culture, right? Let's, let's talk. It's, it's really culture related. you know, I spent some time, a good example is I, I spent some time with some teams in, in India. They were, you know, our development teams, and there is a certain hierarchy, , just take any business meeting with, you know, what your role is and what your gender is. and for me, you know, I, I, I've worked with a lot of colleagues, a lot of women colleagues that would get upset at that and get mad, you know, and they have their u you know, view of law. You know, I'm from the US and this is what it's like.  I threw that in the garbage and said, no, I need to understand what that culture is like. how do they, how do they interact with people?

What does business look like there? and really just through everything I knew, about, you know, growing, growing up in the US being a leader in the us, and turn that on its head. So a lot of listening, a lot of,  you know, I, a great example, I was in a, a meeting with a customer of ours in Germany. so we had people from Germany, people from Portugal, India. Right? you know, it was like the United Nations at this table. I was the only female there. I was the decision maker. but the customer that was there, deferred to, one of the other folks in the room that was not the decision maker. Hmm. I noted it. It's one of those things where I went, okay, got it. Okay. you see it, and I just worked around it.

Right? At the end of the day, I end up be, you know, making the decision on, you know, yeah. What we were dealing with at the time. But, you know, a a lot of people, especially I see it from people coming in the us, they just, they just rush in and they just make a lot of assumptions. Yes. I don't do that. It's, yeah, it's one, it's disrespectful. but, but two, that's, that's not how it is. Right? You, you, you're, you're leading, you have to lead that team, but you have to understand where they're coming from, and how they view world  and that's, you know, that's what allowed me to really be successful with, with my, yeah. Not just my teams, you know, I, you know, people all over the world. but just, you know, whether it was customers, whether it was different businesses, my interactions, just take that into mind. yeah. And you know what? There's some times where I'm, you know, you're not gonna be liked by everybody, and sometimes that's not the case. But, just having that in my head that, you know, just, just take a beat and kind of walk in their shoes and see what's going on. It's, it's, makes the world of difference.

Fahd (54:02):

Yeah. No, I, I, I think, I think that's, I think that's so powerful because, you know, so often we can impose our moral hierarchy on other cultures.

Jeanette (54:13):


Fahd (54:14):

and we, we, we don't seek to understand, we, we very much judge from the perspective of the morals and ethics that we think are most correct, and it, it takes a certain sense of humility to seek, to understand. And you can still disagree but not impose yours, right. Like this is exactly. And I think that takes a certain leadership that takes a certain empathy and mm-hmm. <affirmative> and willing to be a servant leader and willing to not, you know, let yourself get upset at some of those slights and pieces. Note them, you know, don't, don't, you know, don't let it happen too often, but like, don't make it the focus either. I think that that was such a, such a powerful piece for people who are growing through their leadership role. And especially the reason I wanted to pick on the global pieces is because I think more than ever, startups are now global based on talent competition, completely. Like we're all remote, and I can hire from Latin America, from India, from Europe, and it's just easier to do that and find the right person than ever before. And so, while before it would've taken a certain leadership role to become a global head, now you don't have to even have hit that, you know, leadership role to become a global, team. You can be a global team and a team of five or six people, right? Like completely. and, and you're already global, so, yep.

Jeanette (55:39):

Yeah. Yep. Yep. It's a great call out.

Fahd (55:43):

So you, you started, you know, doing a little bit more global work,

Jeanette (55:48):

Global work, additional responsibilities, bigger, bigger pieces of businesses, bigger projects, you're learning along the way. I am, various successes, right? I wouldn't say that everything I was on and working on was a smashing success. cuz I believe,I believe in fostering a,  a culture of failings. Okay. that took me a, a long time to get to, by the way. Cause I'm a, I'm a perfectionist by, by nature. But, feeling's. Okay. because that's how I learned, that's how, that's how everybody learns, right? You, you have to sometimes fail and get knocked off the bike for you to understand, oh, okay, well maybe I shouldn't have, rode that fast that way. Or maybe I shouldn't have,  you know, maybe an assumption about compensation that, that, I didn't verify validate.

But,  so, so various different gr degrees of successes, various different roles. I was on a,  you know, I, again, I said I love technology. I was, I was, getting into roles where I was, you know, vice president of product management, right? Bigger, bigger rules, bigger portfolios of products. And,  people in, this about maybe about five years ago, where I realized, you know what, I really like operations. I'm an operator.  I love that piece of the business, whether it's big company, small company, somewhere in between.  and I started honing in my skills around operations. So, I had a great,  great manager, great leader that I worked with,  still do, still mentor with that gave me those opportunities.  and I think that's the key to, you know, if I'm tracking my progress here, is I, I wasn't, I didn't keep it a secret of what I wanted to do or what I wanted to try.

I, I really,  try to get a seat at the table, as much as possible, kind of lean into that.  so I started doing more operations. So what does that mean in business? more finance, more, sales, whether it's, you know, PLG or sales led, s slg,  customer support, you know, all those different pieces. whereas for years, I was building products and technologies, and yes, I was involved with, you know, making sure there's a go-to-market plan and marketing is up to speed and customer success, and all the executives are seeing what, you know, what you're doing and how you're successful is. but this was just all right. Now, now I'm, I'm executing on, on that other piece. So, I was on a path to, to kind of chief operating officer roles when, the Leadpages opportunity came up.

and, you know, they were, they were looking for a leader of the business. serendipitously I had, Leadpages, I had been tracking for a number of years, you know, since they came onto the scene of the Twin Cities. I loved what they were doing, especially at the time with their technology. dragon Drop, right? You can build a website, you can build a landing page.  holy, you know, holy cow.  8, 9, 10 years ago, I had to, you, you had to hire a front end developer with CSS experience to do that, who's probably knows WordPress, right?  yeah. Yeah. So, so I've been tracking 'em for a long time. and then, when the role became available, and I was a, I was a front runner for this. I was, I was really excited. so to be offered, the, the chance and the opportunity to move into a, a, a, an even larger leadership role than I imagined, has been, just phenomenal. just, just great to do, throwing a pandemic,  just throwing a pandemic right there. Good shit.

Fahd (59:59):

Just, just sprinkle at it a little bit.

Jeanette (01:00:01):

Yeah, just sprinkle that in. had to deal with that.  the other thing too, you know, which, which, you know, being a Minneapolis based company, is coming in, we still had the George Floyd, you know, situation that we were, we were trying to deal with, with, with our employees, and, yeah. You know, trying to give them the safe space that they needed to do, just to talk about it and process it. you know, it happened not too far where the, where the company was.  and it's, it's a big event, right?  and so coupling with all of that, and, you know, really pulling in from all my experiences and, you know, how how I am as a leader has, has really helped me, come into this role. So that's, that's my path. It's not done, by any means.  still lots of opportunity to pursue and,  you know, see, see where it goes next. But, but yeah, that's, that's my journey. That's how I got here.

Fahd (01:01:07):

That's fantastic. So, so, so Jeanette, let's say today you are running, those leadership programs that you got to take at Target, and, you are running it for a group of female tech product managers. Okay. Okay. So female tech product managers Got it. And,  and you get to bestow three large lessons on them about their leadership, growth and practice. I know you've shared many so far. Yes. So, you know, there could be some, some themes,  but I would love the, the Jeanette now, and often I, when I, when I look at leader lessons, I like to say like, what would your leadership lesson have been then versus it is now, right? like, there's, there's often a then and now perspective in leadership lessons, and they kind of show some of our growth. So maybe I'll give you that framework and let you play with it a little bit. It doesn't have to be exactly three. I chose three cuz you know, I say three

Jeanette (01:02:16):

Is good. three female product, women, product managers, early career coming in. oh boy, there's a lot of things.

Fahd (01:02:35):

It could be even founders, female founders

Jeanette (01:02:37):

Here. Yeah. Female founders too. big thing for me outside in, what does that mean? Hmm. as a product manager in technology, you have to understand what's going on in the market. What's, what's outside your four walls that you're in, that you work in every day that you're doing stuff, right? there is a saying,  nothing important happens in the office. And as I was building my product teams,  that is the first thing I actually even gold people on that too, right? As far as, you know, hey, we usually had some kind of bonus with product managers. You know, a quarter of your bonus is how many customer visits you do, how many prospect visits you do, and understanding what their problems are, and what they need help solving, and how can our technology do that, right?

Yeah. And again, I would, various different technologies, right? Depending on what I was in. But first and foremost, get outside. Nothing important happens in here. I always say you can, you can create some really cool stuff,  but if it's not solving anybody's problem, then it's just something cool that's for you. Yeah. so get outside the office.  two listening, right? And I think we talked about it a couple times, during our conversation here.  listen first, right? understand, no matter what the question is or, the issue going on, whether it's internal, whether it's external, listen first, try to understand all sides of it before responding, before communicating back, whether it's written, whether it's verbal, et cetera. listening is key.  data analytics has come up to be big time with, um, with, with product management. Um, it's always been there, right?

You always have to be able to have a really good analytical skills. But what does it mean now? there's so much data we have and, you know, throw in AI and some chat G B T now.  and it just becomes really important to understand interpreting that data that that's, that's a skill I'm seeing that's, that's, more difficult for people to get to. Some people are naturally, better, you know, can, can look at data and analyze it and, you know, talk about an outcome versus others. But, it's really, understanding, the data inputs, what information you're getting off product. there's some great tools now about usage. I wish I would've had that when I was in an early product manager. You know, I'm thinking of tools like, we use Mix panel, for example. holy, holy Cats.

What I have loved to put that on my mobile devices to figure out, you know, what, what, what's going on? We had to do with the old fashioned way. but, you know, understanding the, just the treasure children of data that's coming at you, and what you can interpret from that data. that's practice. you can go through, there's all different kinds of classes out there. There's, there's degrees on this. There's,  all kinds of stuff, but, it's practicing, it's understanding, you know, take a shot at interpreting the data, you know, collaborate. collaboration is a, is a big thing. I think product managers get out down into this hole of, I have to do it all. And you do not. Absolutely not. You need to use, other people, you need to work with other people within the team, the external team, and where you need to get to.

and I think, you know, third thing is, gosh, with product management, it's environmental scanning a little bit. The, this is, they, they talk about environmental scanning.  you typical, particularly hear this with, you know, higher le leadership roles. But, I've been encouraging, whether it's an, you know, early career managers, product managers, environmental scanning, what does that mean? That means, a little bit of what I said earlier, get outside, get outside the office. it is reading, consuming. There's a lot of content out there, but really understanding what's happening in your environment, whether it's, you know, something you wanna bring to market, whether it's a political event, whether it's a, internal or is, you know, maybe a team's upset about something or, technology is a big thing, right? What, what cool new things are are out there.

Just really honing in on that.the fourth one that I, that I, it's, it's a little bit harder to talk about, but, which I became really good at.  it's one of my big skills now is crisis leadership. Hmm. there is, as a product manager, there's all different kinds of situations that come at you and that can come at you at multiple times really fast. and you have to be cool, calm, and just, there's, there's a quote from Apollo 13 movie where, CNN is saying, just work the problem. People work the problem. just step back and just figure out which pieces and you know, how to solve that crisis. that, that will help a product manager get through the darkest of times. whether you've just released a product that has, a thousand bugs and falls on its head, to anywhere from, you've got an engineering team that is revolting on you, right?

Somewhere in between. So, that's been really helpful for me too, is not only, moving into product management, but as I've grown as a leader is, is to recognize that crisis, crisis will happen. It's not a matter of, you know, kind of when, it's more or not, it's not when it's, if, you know, people say, if a crisis happens, it's actually when, and being prepared for some of that, right? so yeah, that's, yeah. If, if I had my free product product managers in front of me, that's what I would tell them.

Fahd (01:09:22):

That's awesome. I think those are some really good points. Everything from the outside in and listening really carefully to being able to, you know, part of listening is the data analytics really is listening. It's looking at the usage and being able to have those environmental scans, as you said, and finally that that,  crisis, that crisis leadership being able to work the problem. Cuz that's at the, exactly the end of the day. At the end of the day, you are made a leader because people want you to solve the problem and help build teams that can solve the problem. Right? That's, that's exactly, that's part of your leadership. I really like to kind of maybe end off with this and, but I really like your journey from product to, C-suite to other leadership roles. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, often I, when I talk to startups, you know, I say, we're gonna obsess over product market fit.

This is, you know, you're gonna have to build a phenomenal product and you're gonna find a market that fits in. This is what we're all constantly fighting for this product market fit, of course. And, you know, when you are a product manager, you're obsessed about product, but to be able to become a, a leader beyond just product, you had to start obsessing about the market too. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, well, what are the, you know, where does it fit in the market, but what does sales look like? What does customer success look like? And then the pieces between those, those operational pieces that you said started building you up for a c o O role, right? Like, what that looks like. And so often with a lot of, you know, our founders who are very product heavy, I say, well, you've gotta also get you to think about the market pieces and or if they're a very business person, I'll get you thinking about the product.

Like, you know, those pieces. So I, I like to hear that in your kind of, in your kind of role and your evolution. Well, Janet, this, this has been wonderful. It's been fantastic. Fantastic. I know I learned a lot from Thank you. Our conversation. Thank you so much for sharing everything from your girl scout days, your Girl Scouts cookie days, I know, to your basketball championships, to the challenges of being an empathetic leader and having to create really, make really difficult decisions and how we can still lean into our empathy and lean into your style of leadership despite the different, challenges that we have. Absolutely. Thank you so much for all the wisdom that you shared. I don't know if you have any last thoughts or words for us, but I appre I appreciate you

Jeanette (01:11:34):

I dunno if I have any last words. I just thank you, for the opportunity to talk, about leadership. It's, it's one of my passions. and I I love mentoring, people early career, as they go to their journey. But, thank you, thank you for,  allowing me to have the forum to talk about leadership. I, i appreciate it.

Fahd (01:11:58):

Thank you, Jeanette, for joining us and recording a phenomenal episode and taking us through your life journey of leadership through all the different stages of your career. I found it wonderful to get through and to hear about. And I'd love to leave our audience with this one question. If you're listening and you've listened all the way here, I want you to really hone in on this. Do you as a leader know your strengths? Could you name them clearly, precisely? And how can you lean into your strengths more? How can you find opportunities where you're working within your strengths more? That would be what we take away here today. One of the key insights from Jeanette around being an effective female leader in tech is find your strength and exploit your strength. Thank you for listening. Thank you for getting all the way through. If you've got any questions, any topics you want us to cover, any guests who you think would be phenomenal for our podcast, please feel free to email me fahd@unicornlabs.ca. And that's it for today. Thank you so much for tuning into this episode of the Unicorn Leadership Podcast. You can find the show notes and the transcripts@unicornlabs.ca slash podcast. And if you like the content, be sure to rate it, to review it, to subscribe, to hit the little notifications button, tell your friends, shout out from the rooftops,  and yet Unicorn Leaders Podcast out there. Thank you so much for being an amazing, audience. And that is all for now.

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