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How I Got Hired in Product with Bryan Postelnek | Beyond the Program
26th September 2023 • The Pair Program • hatch I.T.
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Ever wondered how to step into the world of Product Management? Curious about what it takes to land a role?

Today’s guest host, Becca Moran, speaks with Bryan Postelnek about how he stepped into a new role as a Product Manager.

They discuss:

  • The interview process for product management roles.
  • What companies look for in a PM (and how they structure the interview process to find the right person).
  • The onboarding process that Bryan experienced and the responsibilities he was given.
  • Tips for others looking to find a new role in product management.
  • And much more!

About today’s host: With 5+ years of experience leading startup product teams and almost 10 years in the DC tech scene, Becca offers a wealth of valuable insights. She is currently the Vice President, Product & Engagement at Procurated, where she leads the product, design, and engineering functions for the company.

About today’s guest: Bryan Postelnek is a seasoned Product leader with over a decade of experience as a PM solving complex problems for companies and its users. On his off time, you may find him traveling, cooking, being an amateur ballroom dancer with his wife, learning to be a dad, asking his friends to play board games with him, or just trying to learn something new this week (currently it's juggling). You can find out about his latest professional ongoings on LinkedIn - feel free to reach out to him for help, advice, or a quick hello.

Sign-Up for the Weekly hatchpad Newsletter: https://www.myhatchpad.com/newsletter/

Transcripts

Tim Winkler:

Hey, listeners, Tim Winkler here, your host of The Pair Program.

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We've got exciting news introducing our

latest partner series beyond the program.

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In these special episodes, we're

passing the mic to some of our savvy

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former guests who are returning as

guest hosts, get ready for unfiltered

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conversations, exclusive insights,

and unexpected twist as our alumni

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pair up with their chosen guest.

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Each guest host is a trailblazing

expert in a unique technical field.

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Think data, product management,

and engineering, all with a keen

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focus on startups and career growth.

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Look out for these bonus episodes

dropping every other week,

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bridging the gaps between our

traditional pair program episodes.

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So buckle up and get ready to

venture beyond the program.

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Enjoy.

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Becca Moran: I'm Becca, and

this is How I Got Hired.

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How I Got Hired is a series of

interviews where product managers share

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how they landed great product roles.

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From PMs who made a career pivot into

tech, to those with more formal training,

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How I Got Hired captures the various ways

to open doors into the world of product.

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We'll be talking about each guest's

recipe for success, what motivated

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them to get into product, How they

prepared for the interview and what

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they did to set themselves apart.

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For today, my conversation with Brian,

I have the pleasure of being able to

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talk about the other side of the table,

uh, as the person that hired him.

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Um, just for a little bit of background on

me, uh, your host, my name is Becca Moran.

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Um, I am currently the VP of product

and engagement at Procurated,

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which is a rating and review

site for the public sector.

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We get into that a little bit more, uh,

in a minute, but, um, my guest today.

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Is Brian who, uh, I had the

pleasure of working with over

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the last few years at Procurated.

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And, uh, we hired Brian from

Angie, aka Angie's List.

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Um, and that's the story

we'll be talking about today.

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So, um, before we get into

things just to, uh, kick it off

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and break the ice a little bit.

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I thought it would be fun for us to play

a little bit of, uh, 2 truths and a lie.

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So, Brian, did you prepare

your truths and lines?

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Bryan Postelnek: I did.

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Uh, I did.

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And thank you for having me here.

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Becca.

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Um, long time listener.

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Uh, first, first, first time, uh, joining

first time calling in, um, no, yes, I

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did prepare and I had to think about.

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Yeah, I have a theme, uh, to my,

my two truths and a lie, you know,

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I put some effort into this one.

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Okay.

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Becca Moran: Um, do you want to go first?

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You want me to go first?

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Bryan Postelnek: Sure.

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Sure.

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I'll go first.

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Um, so, uh, two truths and a lie.

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Uh, so one of these, one of these

is a lie, but the theme, uh, I, I

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figured, you know, uh, true crime

podcasts are all the rage these days.

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And so I figured I would talk

about, list out your crimes, confess

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to crimes, uh, on the air today.

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Yeah, right.

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I confess to, uh, you know, things that

are not, um, like, uh, like illegal,

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I guess, like things that you would,

you would get in trouble for doing.

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Okay.

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Um, when I was in high school in

particular, uh, so they're all,

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they're all, uh, you know, crime

adjacent, if not actual crimes.

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Um, uh, but when I was in high school,

so surely the statute of limitations, no

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one's going to come after me for these.

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Um, so, uh, number one, uh, I broke

into my crush's locker to fill it

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with candy for Valentine's day.

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Number two, uh, I snuck myself

and my friends into a Batman

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movie in IMAX in New York city.

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And number three, I went out to the

guidance counselor's computer and

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changed someone else's schedule.

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Becca Moran: Ooh.

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I feel like all of those sound like the

plot of, like, a classic teen movie or,

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like, scenes in a classic teen movie.

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Bryan Postelnek: I mean, I was a teen,

so, you know, I was just limping out what

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I saw on television and in the movies.

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Becca Moran: I'm gonna guess that filling

your crush's locker with candy is a lie.

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Bryan Postelnek: Uh, you're correct.

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I have not broken into anyone's locker.

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I didn't, I didn't, uh, cross that,

that line, which I think is actually,

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um, the most illegal one of them.

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I, if I were to, to put my finger on it.

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Um, I did sneak my Whose, whose

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Becca Moran: schedule

did you change and why?

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Bryan Postelnek: Um, so, uh, my wife's.

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Uh, there's a, there's a whole, even in

my wedding vows, uh, I talk about this.

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I say, I say like I committed

a minor cybercrime by, by,

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by changing her schedule.

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Your early days of hacking.

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Yeah.

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Uh, it's, uh, yeah, what, what happened

was, uh, the guidance counselor had

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left the room as she tells the story

was like, I just went on the computer.

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I, you know, he might've

given me permission.

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I might've just gone on there.

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Who's to really tell at this point?

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Because.

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He doesn't work at the school anymore.

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Uh, so, uh, yeah, I changed her schedule.

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Um, cause she needed to, she wanted to

take drama again and, uh, she needed

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to also like take some other classes.

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And so like I rearranged her schedule

and, uh, funny enough, my wife is a,

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uh, a professor of social psychology.

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Uh, I put her in AP psychology.

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Which, uh, so you changed

the course of her life?

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I did.

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I think she didn't have any

business being in that class.

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Like, yeah.

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Uh, like, you know, she didn't

take like a, a prereq or something

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that maybe some people took.

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I was just like, yeah, put you in here.

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I put her in AP Biology.

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Um, and we actually, you know, we, we both

ended up taking that drama class together.

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Um, she was in the room.

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Mm-hmm.

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So also, I should clarify that she was

in the room when I changed the schedule.

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It wasn't just like, I like this girl.

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Change your schedule.

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Yeah, no, like it.

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It was it was all there.

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That's

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Becca Moran: amazing.

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Um, I'm also impressed that, like,

in my mind, this, the software

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that you would use to schedule

high school classes, like, doesn't

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naturally sound very user friendly.

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So I'm kind of like, you could

just jump on there and be like,

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Bryan Postelnek: like,

yeah, that's a good point.

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You know, Katie and I don't talk much

about like, what did that interface look

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like that just made this so easy for me

to just go and do, but I guess it must've

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just been like, you know, drop down,

pick a class, make sure there's room.

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Becca Moran: Kudos to the, uh,

the product person that built

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whatever software that is.

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That's right.

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Bryan Postelnek: Yeah.

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Yeah.

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So that's, uh, that's, that's me.

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Becca Moran: Amazing.

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All right.

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I also had a theme, not a crime

theme, but maybe I'll keep that

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in mind for future episodes.

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Um, okay.

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So mine is all kind of medical

issue related without getting

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Bryan Postelnek: too personal.

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I mean, that's also, that's

also a popular theme, like, you

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know, uh, medical mysteries.

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Becca Moran: My strange ailment.

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Yeah.

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Um, these are not mysterious though.

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I will say.

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Um, okay.

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So number one, uh, in high school

I was sleepwalking and fell from

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a loft and broke my collarbone.

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Number two, I was born tongue

tied or number three, I recently

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ended up in the telomere failure.

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Okay.

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The top of a cheerleading pyramid,

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Bryan Postelnek: I'm not, you didn't

ask me any clarifying questions, but

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like, I'm like, how recent was this?

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Uh, that, that you tried that.

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Um, I'm going to say that, uh, you

were not born with a tongue tie.

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That would be wrong.

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Was it?

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Do I want to be wrong twice?

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Um, uh, I'm gonna guess,

uh, The cheerleading one.

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Now you fell.

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Becca Moran: Yes.

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So, uh, I, the, uh, the cheerleading one

was recently it was Easter of this year.

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Um, my, uh, cousins are to blame for

their lack of strength and ability.

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My lack of balance and grace

and sobriety was a factor.

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But, um, no, that's a real story.

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Uh, I have the ER bill to prove it.

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Um, I was also born tongue tied and

I, uh, had, I could talk totally fine,

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but like weirdly in middle school,

I decided that I absolutely must

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have the surgery to like, correct

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Bryan Postelnek: it.

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Yeah.

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I'm like, I'm like, you know, I thought

maybe I would hear it or something when

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you talked that, like some evidence.

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Well, and

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Becca Moran: that was the thing, like,

as a kid, my parents were like, well,

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we'll see if she can talk right or not.

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And then I was fine.

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And then I was like, no,

I can't be different.

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I need

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Bryan Postelnek: to, I need to correct

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Becca Moran: this.

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Yeah.

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Anyway.

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Um, but no, I did not sleepwalk

and fall and break my collarbone.

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I have actually.

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Even despite the cheerleading

incident, never broken a bone.

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Um, but that is a real story.

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My friend in high school did do

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Bryan Postelnek: that.

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So, wow.

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You know, I think, I think you really

played on what I knew about you.

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Uh, and, uh, but I didn't know, cause I

didn't know that you never broke a bone.

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Um, I did know, uh, like sleeping

was, was a medical concern for you.

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So that's good.

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Well done.

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Well done.

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Um, well.

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Becca Moran: I, um, I would have tried

to think of a good segue into our

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Bryan Postelnek: story, but who really

the audience decides if it's a good segue.

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It's not up to us.

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So

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Becca Moran: thank you.

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And, and you're the, the segue King.

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So I wouldn't want to insult you.

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Yeah.

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Yeah.

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Yeah.

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But, um, we can, uh, we can get into

a little bit of the story of, uh,

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how we met and your unique journey

into, you know, Um, the product

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role at Recurated and, and all that.

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So I guess maybe as a good place

to start for our listeners, um.

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Would be if you could talk a little bit

about kind of rewinding two and a half,

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almost three years ago, kind of where

were you, what was going on, uh, in your

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life at the time in terms of your, you

can go broad, but maybe specifically in

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terms of your, your role at, at Angie and.

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Um, kind of what pain is the scene

leading up to, uh, your interview at

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Bryan Postelnek: procurated.

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Yeah, so, uh, leading up to

interviewing at procurated.

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Um, so for context, I think it was

either the very end of October or it

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was the very beginning of November

:

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LinkedIn message from Anessa, um, the

recruiter y'all were working with.

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So shout out to Anessa.

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Um, just call them out as I see them.

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Uh, but at the time I was working

at Angie's list, um, I was

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the, I was a product manager.

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I was responsible for, um, the

service provider mobile app.

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Um, and there we were, uh, I was

starting to get a little bit of traction

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for some stuff we wanted to do there.

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I'd like just put together a presentation

around, um, uh, some advancements

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I wanted to make in it and starting

to get some, some buy in for that.

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And also at the same time, we had

just started pivoting internally for.

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Um, the rebranding, um, from

Angie's list to Angie, um,

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Becca Moran: had you, what was

the status of the home advisor

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merge acquisition or, oh,

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Bryan Postelnek: yeah, the home

advisor merger started like a

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month after I joined in 2017.

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Uh, so.

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Uh, so that was like May, June

of:

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Um, by now we were well merged.

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Um, you know, still some things here

and there that, that didn't quite

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get coupled yet and still some things

that were completely distinct and

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owned by their team versus ours.

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Um, but this was we had known for a

little bit that, uh, that the rebranding

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was going to happen and we're starting

to move everything in the direction of,

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you know, we had like a hard deadline for

when the, the rebrand was going to happen.

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So we're starting to organize

everyone that direction.

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I was working on, um, some payments

feature, I think some payments

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and billing and invoicing as

well within the pro mobile app.

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Uh, so I was working on all those things.

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Um, and I wasn't really looking,

honestly, um, you know, I, uh, I thought

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that I was going to stay on for a

little bit, see how the rebrand goes.

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Um, but then I got this, uh, this message

from Vanessa and, you know, uh, I guess

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the other things to paint the picture

at the time is we're in the middle of

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a pandemic and I was living in Ohio.

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Um, so just imagine me in a, in

a 2 bedroom apartment in Dublin,

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Ohio, uh, sit on my computer and

then LinkedIn message comes along.

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Um, and I was really

excited because, uh, yeah.

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Yeah, I love it when people reach

out to me and are interested in me.

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So there's this vanity.

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Yeah, I do.

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Like when I'm not even doing

anything, they just like say,

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Hey, uh, would you like this job?

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Uh, but, uh, that, and, and, you

know, I remember distinctly, you

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know, Anessa in the message described,

you know, some of the, some of the

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impact and the mission of procuring.

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And I was like, Oh,

this sounds interesting.

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You know, I don't really know what I'm

getting myself into, but I'll take a crack

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at it and, and see, um, see where it goes.

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Yeah, well,

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Becca Moran: I'll give a little bit of

the perspective kind of from the other

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side of things, um, to share with folks

kind of where we were at that point.

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So, um, when I joined procurated,

um, employee number 1, um, I was

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doing a little bit of everything as,

um, tends to happen at that stage.

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And, um, For a while was kind of

the, the person doing the, all of

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the day to day product work and.

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Um, at this point, we had kind of

grown to a size where just was not

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feasible for me to be doing all of

that in addition to other things.

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And, um, our engineering team had grown.

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I think we were, I guess we hired

a few engineers, like, right,

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started like the same time as you.

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Um, so we had a team of five folks.

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Yeah, it was five when I joined.

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So, yeah.

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You know, I, I can't keep up.

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I couldn't keep up with,

uh, with 5 engineers.

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So, um, you know, we were really

thinking about in an ideal world,

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finding somebody that had worked for

a ratings and review platform, even

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though, you know, we're focused on the

public sector, very different than, um,

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you know, The, the space that Angie's

list is, is focused on, but tons and

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tons of parallels and, um, we can talk

about this more in a bit, but I think

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that's certainly 1 of the reasons that

you were able to hit the ground running.

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Um, so, yeah, I think when Vanessa

found you, it was like, this is a

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great profile of of someone with

a really relevant experience.

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So.

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I also want to just rewind

maybe 1 step further.

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Um, uh, I think the where you were

in terms of Angie's list is relevant.

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Um, but I also think you have kind of

a cool path in terms of, like, what you

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studied and, um, some of your, like,

initial startup work that you did.

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So, um, do you want to

talk about that for a

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Bryan Postelnek: minute to.

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Yeah, um, yeah, so, like, uh, my

background background, if you rewind 10

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plus years ago, uh, is, uh, you know,

I had an engineering undergraduate

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degree with a minor in theater.

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It still says on my resume,

a minor in theater because I,

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it was almost a double major.

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Uh, uh, but.

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We've heard it

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Becca Moran: started in high school

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Bryan Postelnek: drama class.

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Yeah, right?

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Yeah.

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It's high school drama class and I

did some more theater in college.

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Um, that's that's a whole another

story about different career paths.

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I think I could have gone down.

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Um, could have been an actor.

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I think honestly, I thought I was

going to be like a playwright.

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Um, I've really enjoyed

the playwriting professor.

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I had in college, uh, it

was, it was a lot of fun.

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Uh, so, uh, so I did that and then I, I,

uh, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do.

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And I found, uh, Lehigh

was doing this program.

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Uh, the first class of it, they

were doing something called the

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masters of engineering and technical

entrepreneurship applied, got in.

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Um, and the, the, so I was the first

class of this and, uh, it was pretty much

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combining, uh, how to start a startup.

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You know, going through, you know,

understanding business financials,

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understanding like what it means to

raise money, like pitching our ideas,

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actually working on ideas that we had.

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And then, um, you know, the product

development, um, of it all too.

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So under like prototyping and getting

feedback and, um, you know, doing user

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interviews, uh, you know, all the way

up to as far as you could bring it in

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one year, um, you know, while doing

coursework that aligns with this, but

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also learning things at the same time.

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So really, you know, you could think

of as like, An accelerator incubator

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for this type of thing, but you also

get a professional degree out of it.

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Um, and, you know, I worked on my

own idea and then I was like, oh,

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that's never going to work or slash.

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I don't want to do it.

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Um, it was a live stream theater, and

of course, I had a funny name for it

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called the not theater theater company.

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Because I'm like, it's not the same

thing anyway, and then I worked

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on a friend's project as well.

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Uh, and so that's that's how

I got, you know, a lot of

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like, uh, product development.

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Excitement and learning about, you know,

the world, I think, set me up for some

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success later on having a good foundation.

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Uh, and, uh, yeah, from there, I got an,

uh, uh, I worked at a series B startup

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in New York, um, and they're making

marketing technology products and, uh, and

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I learned a lot on the ground there and,

uh, you know, fell on my face a lot there.

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Um, you know, learning about, you know,

You know, APIs and, you know, campaign

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builders working with developers, uh,

working with designers because I had,

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like, you didn't do any of that in

the master's program, but you didn't

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worry about software development.

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It was mainly a hardware focused school.

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Uh, so, you know, just a lot of

learning on that job and learn,

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learning it very difficultly.

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Uh, if that's a word, uh, uh,

because I also, my, my then

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girlfriend, now wife moved to

Indiana for her, for her schooling.

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And so I was actually, um, commuting

back and forth, uh, staying a few

361

:

weeks in New Jersey at a time.

362

:

To go work in New York and then

working remote from Indiana.

363

:

Otherwise, that's that's a long answer.

364

:

Yeah, that's a long answer

about, like, how I got started.

365

:

Kind of, um, I got started

with an internship.

366

:

Actually,

367

:

Becca Moran: it's super interesting.

368

:

Kind of what you said about, uh, kind

of learn by fire and like, in comparison

369

:

to what you learned in the course.

370

:

Right?

371

:

Like, I think, A course can be a really

incredible way to learn all of the,

372

:

like, best practices or whatever.

373

:

Like, here's what you should do.

374

:

I think when you actually are in a role,

a lot of that stuff kind of goes out

375

:

the window and you're like, uh, okay,

well, like what do I, I'm encountering

376

:

countless scenarios that mm-hmm.

377

:

, you know, as a class would never teach me.

378

:

Um, and I do think that there's

a lot of it that's just kind

379

:

of, Bumbling through it at 1st.

380

:

Um, I know my experience with that.

381

:

So I started before I moved into product.

382

:

I was a technical project

manager at Politico and.

383

:

Um, before that I was in sales and when

I moved over from sales to tech, like, I

384

:

just remember sitting in so many meetings

with our engineers just being like, I

385

:

have no idea what anyone is talking about.

386

:

Like I couldn't even grasp like anything,

I was just like, this is gibberish to me.

387

:

And, um, it definitely took a while

to spend a lot of Googling and a lot

388

:

of just asking questions to, uh, be

able to start piecing it together.

389

:

But, um, yeah, that's, you know,

everybody has to start somewhere

390

:

and it can be a very humbling

experience when you realize that.

391

:

A lot of it is just learning by doing

and making a lot of mistakes and

392

:

oh, yeah, you know, I'm just saying,

okay, I don't not sure what else

393

:

to do, but I won't do that again.

394

:

Bryan Postelnek: Right?

395

:

And like, I feel like, you know,

yeah, I have that background in

396

:

the degree and then, you know,

you read like Kagan's books.

397

:

Um, to try to, like, understand,

like, here's how it should work.

398

:

And it's like, well, okay.

399

:

So, again, all these things are, like,

best practices, you know, the, the,

400

:

the reality of the world is tugging you

towards, uh, chaos or, you know, the, the

401

:

least amount of friction to get something

done, um, or power, you know, uh, power

402

:

dynamics with an organization, uh, you

know, but it's good to know those things.

403

:

Like, it's good to know, like, here,

here's a version of the world that's

404

:

Idealistic, uh, maybe possible

under the right circumstances.

405

:

Um, and if you agree with it,

just start, you know, tugging

406

:

yourself and the processes towards

that, um, as, as much as you can.

407

:

Um, and then adjusting, of course,

for your, for your various cultures.

408

:

Um, but it's good to know, because then

you can once, you know, like, kind of like

409

:

best practices, you can then be creative

on top of it about what works for you.

410

:

Becca Moran: I'll say that's definitely

something that appealed to me about

411

:

joining a very early stage startup.

412

:

Like I said, employee

number 1, I was like, Ooh.

413

:

This is cool.

414

:

Like, I, I can create

this, um, product culture.

415

:

Um, and, um, so that was very

interesting to me where you're, you're

416

:

not kind of coming into, uh, something

that's already established and.

417

:

And lamenting the, you know,

like, oh, you know, it should

418

:

be done this way, not that way.

419

:

Right.

420

:

And, and of course, like, you realize

that even with a clean slate, it's

421

:

very hard to kind of model things

after the, the best practice.

422

:

For lots of different reasons,

but, um, yeah, that was definitely

423

:

something that appealed to me.

424

:

Anyway, let's see back to our story,

so we've got some good context on, uh.

425

:

Where you were, what was

going on in your head?

426

:

Um.

427

:

Let's talk a little bit about,

um, you know, what you remember

428

:

about kind of the, the interview

process and preparing for it.

429

:

Um, if you can share just some thoughts

on, like, what are some of the things

430

:

that you remember doing in preparation

for the interviews that we did with you?

431

:

What are some things that kind of

stand out to you as as maybe things

432

:

that helped you in that process?

433

:

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah, uh, in terms

of like preparation, um, I'll admit

434

:

I probably didn't do very much, uh,

because, um, I'm, I'm, I'm like that,

435

:

I guess we're like, you know, like for

the first one, I'm just like, I'm just

436

:

going to hear what we're going to talk

about, feel it out, see what's going on.

437

:

Um, I don't even remember who

the 1st person I talked to was.

438

:

I might have done a phone

screening with Vanessa.

439

:

Um, and then I talked to you probably,

because that would seem like a logical

440

:

order of events, um, you know, uh, you

know, and got progressively more excited.

441

:

I think I talked to you.

442

:

Um, I, I distinctly remember, uh, like.

443

:

I feel like I distinctly remember

as I went on the interview

444

:

process, I dressed nicer and nicer.

445

:

I was just like, wearing like, you know,

like a sweatshirt for like, the 1st 1

446

:

and then the next 1 is like a, like a

447

:

Becca Moran: shirt, right?

448

:

Like, sometimes.

449

:

The startup vibe is super cat sometimes.

450

:

It's

451

:

Bryan Postelnek: not.

452

:

I think I just wanted the job more and

more as I like started talking to y'all.

453

:

I was like, I really like these folks like

454

:

Becca Moran: the final

interview with like a tuxedo on.

455

:

That's right.

456

:

I really, really

457

:

Bryan Postelnek: want this.

458

:

Please, uh, but yeah, no, I

remember, uh, you know, I had

459

:

a great conversation with you.

460

:

I think then I talked to, um,

George and Jacqueline, right?

461

:

Um, as my, my next round

462

:

Becca Moran: are us designer and 1 of our

463

:

Bryan Postelnek: engineers.

464

:

Yes.

465

:

Uh, and then, uh, I did the final round.

466

:

Um, yeah, cause that was the

first time I met, I met Jess.

467

:

Um, and so I did the final round with

you, David was there, uh, Jess was there.

468

:

And then I, in my notes,

it says Jenna's here too.

469

:

Um, that's possible.

470

:

It's possible.

471

:

About it.

472

:

And you know, the, what it says

next to Jess's name is operations,

473

:

question mark, question mark.

474

:

Like, I'm like, I don't,

I in the audience.

475

:

Yeah.

476

:

Um, but, uh, but for that, you know,

so like, I didn't, I didn't prepare

477

:

much for the first few interviews.

478

:

I talked about my story, um, for the

final round, I had a presentation to do.

479

:

Um, and that was a presentation

around, I want to say like virality

480

:

and like how to make the product more

viral and, you know, to pre that one

481

:

I had to prepare for, of course, but.

482

:

That's why

483

:

Becca Moran: we were really focused

on the love as a product, uh,

484

:

kind of like theme, uh, which was.

485

:

This idea that, um, yeah, I guess it

was like thinking about really how do

486

:

we kind of make our product go viral?

487

:

How do we make people love it so

much that they can't help, but tell

488

:

other people or whatever, um, I'm

kind of laughing as I say this.

489

:

Um, I'm full disclosure.

490

:

I'm not sure we figured that out,

but that's, and that's probably in

491

:

some shape or form, the goal of.

492

:

Uh, any product team, but, um, you

know, I, it, but I guess maybe to give

493

:

us a little bit more credit, like it

is a very, um, important potential

494

:

strategy for as like a growth mechanism,

especially in like marketplace businesses.

495

:

Um, so, you know, it was relevant

is relevant, but, um, how did you

496

:

like think about, you know, I feel

like those challenges, even You

497

:

know, as someone who creates them,

I'm always like, is this fair?

498

:

Like, it's really hard as the hiring

manager to like remove yourself from

499

:

the business and think about like,

what's a fair prompt to ask someone that

500

:

reasonably like, shouldn't have much

depth of understanding of like what our

501

:

business is and what our product does.

502

:

So like, um, either in relation

to the specific prompt that you

503

:

worked on for us, or just how you

think about this in general, like.

504

:

How do you overcome that?

505

:

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah, I

think that, uh, it's tough.

506

:

I think that I don't recall the prompt

being particularly like difficult to

507

:

grasp what was going on at Brooke.

508

:

You're like, or at least what

you wanted from me, right?

509

:

Like, there's assumptions

I'm going to make.

510

:

I have this whole like brain dump

document that I'm looking at that I dug

511

:

up because I'm like, I wonder what I used

to think or how I did prepare for this.

512

:

And I did bring up, I built

a presentation on top of it.

513

:

Um, but I think that, uh, I think,

yeah, it's a balance because you

514

:

don't want to like put, you know, a

lot of You want it to be easy enough

515

:

for the person who's interviewing in

order to grasp whatever's going on.

516

:

Um, I also struggle a little bit with Um,

you know, there's, there's talk, there's

517

:

talk about, you know, uh, like the prompts

being a form of like free consulting,

518

:

um, on behalf of the interviewees.

519

:

Yeah.

520

:

Uh, and so I think, you know, if I

were to take another crack at like,

521

:

you know, I did one for the designer we

hired and was similar, like, you know,

522

:

thinking about, um, you know, what is

going to be meaningful that has good

523

:

context for our business so they can

get excited about what we're working on.

524

:

Like there's that like balance.

525

:

Um, because you want them

to, like, kind of start to

526

:

understand here's the business.

527

:

Um, you know, when we say Yelp for

government, was that really mean, uh, or

528

:

some of the underlying things you're gonna

have to think about, but you also don't

529

:

want to, you know, them to feel like, oh,

I'm just giving them my ideas for free.

530

:

Yeah, they may or may not hire me.

531

:

So I think it's just about like

being really thoughtful about it.

532

:

And I think there's ways that you can

look at, um, other, other companies

533

:

and just leverage their company

as like what you would do here.

534

:

Like if it were, you know, you know,

it could have been a prompter on like

535

:

Yelp and how to make Yelp's viral

coefficient, um, higher or something.

536

:

Um, so that you can, an

analogous business, but a totally

537

:

different set of circumstances.

538

:

I like that kind of

539

:

Becca Moran: translating it to something

you do know, um, which I think is a really

540

:

great way to then be able to demonstrate,

like, how you think about something.

541

:

Right?

542

:

Because I think that's the thing.

543

:

And a lot of these situations

and interviews, um.

544

:

People say that about, like, kind of

a case study type question, you know,

545

:

how many windows are there and, uh, uh,

buildings in Manhattan or whatever, right?

546

:

Like, it's not really about

getting the right answer.

547

:

It's just showing, like, okay, are,

are you thoughtful and logical in the

548

:

way that you work through the question?

549

:

And how does that provide some

insight into to how you think?

550

:

So I think to your point,

if you can find something.

551

:

Analogous to the the business

and then relate to it that way.

552

:

That's a really good strategy.

553

:

That's awesome.

554

:

Um, looking back, is there

anything you wish you knew about

555

:

the company or the role that, um.

556

:

I don't know, like, would have helped

you in the process or like that you just.

557

:

I feel like maybe you should

have known going in that you

558

:

didn't know, like it's yeah.

559

:

Reflecting back, any thoughts

560

:

Bryan Postelnek: on that?

561

:

Uh, I will say, um, don't be like

me and not research the company

562

:

before you go interview for

like, no, we still got the job.

563

:

So I still got the job.

564

:

Yeah.

565

:

There's like, I loved

working at procreated.

566

:

So like, you know, don't, don't, uh,

uh, there's like the, the pro con here.

567

:

Like, I'm not saying

like research it because.

568

:

I, you know, I got into something terrible

and you will too, yeah, uh, I lucked

569

:

out like all things, all things here.

570

:

I was very fortunate and lucky

to, to work with you all and, and

571

:

have a lot of fun doing it and,

uh, and build some cool stuff.

572

:

Uh, but I would say, do I'm in the

interviewing process now, and I'm,

573

:

you know, doing my research on these

companies as I, you know, start to hear

574

:

back from them and, um, start to get

farther in, um, it takes time, of course.

575

:

Which is the takes time and effort.

576

:

Um, and you kind of just want to go.

577

:

Go through the interviewing process.

578

:

What are

579

:

Becca Moran: some tips

on, like, that research?

580

:

Like, I remember, I remember, like,

when I first graduated from college

581

:

and was interviewing and trying to

get a job, I, you know, at that age,

582

:

you just, like, don't know anything.

583

:

I remember, like, going through

company websites and, like, trying

584

:

to memorize, like, I don't know who

was on their board of directors and

585

:

like, just like all of this stuff.

586

:

Cause I'm like, I don't know

what they're going to ask me.

587

:

I don't know what they care about.

588

:

Um, like what are some things that you

really try to focus in on when you're

589

:

researching a company actually are helpful

and important in the interview process?

590

:

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah.

591

:

I think what's, what's, uh, when I'm

researching the company, not talking

592

:

to them, cause there's so many things

you pick up on when you talk to them.

593

:

Um, you know, I, I'm looking

at Glassdoor comparably.

594

:

Blind team, blind.

595

:

com, um, seeing what, what's written on

the internet about them, looking at their

596

:

lot places have great careers pages now,

um, that tell you about their culture.

597

:

Um, and then, uh, to like understand

what they're building, like going on

598

:

the website, if, if there's a free

version of their tool to download

599

:

or get into, that's always good.

600

:

Um, what I, what I found, um, when,

when there's nothing, when it's

601

:

like, I don't really understand what

this is, but I'm excited about their

602

:

mission and what it sounds like.

603

:

Um, honestly, podcasts and

YouTube videos these days, um,

604

:

I sound like such an old man.

605

:

I'm like, look at these fancy

ways of finding out information,

606

:

the, the YouTube and the podcast.

607

:

Have you heard of YouTube?

608

:

Becca Moran: This new site?

609

:

Bryan Postelnek: SoundCloud

hosts audiophiles.

610

:

Uh, yeah.

611

:

So you, so I was doing research on one,

on a, a series A startup and I'm like,

612

:

Oh, yeah, You know, I don't, I don't

know, um, I kind of get what's going

613

:

on here, like, but, but I really like

to prep for the recruiter interview.

614

:

And so I listened to like an hour long

podcast with the founders, um, that

615

:

they were on, uh, they were guest guest,

um, participants on podcast talking

616

:

about their company and what they did.

617

:

And I was like, okay, like I get it now.

618

:

I understand how you make money.

619

:

I understand what you're doing.

620

:

Um, it really helps to,

uh, put it in context.

621

:

So anything where you can find

like high level employees.

622

:

Um, from those companies on some

type of media, I think really helps

623

:

you hear it out loud and how they

describe it in order to contextualize

624

:

Becca Moran: it.

625

:

I think that's a great point.

626

:

I have honestly been shocked,

not just for product rule.

627

:

I mean, I think to me, it's like

table stakes for a product rule,

628

:

like use the product, right?

629

:

Um, you know, yeah.

630

:

Play around with it as much as you can.

631

:

Um, going into the interview, but

really for any role, like, so we're

632

:

curated is you have to, um, log

in to be able to access the vast

633

:

majority of the functionality.

634

:

And, um, I'm always surprised when people

we interviewed don't ask us for access.

635

:

Um, because like, how do you,

I'm not sure you, how you really.

636

:

Like, I don't think we have a ton of

great information out there about,

637

:

like, what our platform actually is.

638

:

Uh, we're getting better.

639

:

Um, but, like, I, I think it would be

very hard to grasp if you didn't get

640

:

a login and actually poke around and

641

:

Bryan Postelnek: use it.

642

:

I mean, uh, I didn't have a log, like,

like part of, you know, you asked me like,

643

:

what did I know or like about the company?

644

:

I didn't, I remember trying to

explain to my, I was at Angie's list,

645

:

telling my manager where I was going.

646

:

I'm like, it's, it's like

this thing for this thing.

647

:

I'm like, I like kind of understand

what I'm going to go work on again.

648

:

Super fortunate what I lucked into,

but I just remember being like.

649

:

Very excited about it felt very

good about it was was was doing

650

:

it on almost like faith alone.

651

:

Um, uh, but yeah, Becca, I didn't know

that much about what I was getting into.

652

:

Like, like, you've heard it now.

653

:

I don't know that I've told you

that before that I started and

654

:

I was like, what is this thing?

655

:

Um, you know, it's a Yelp for government.

656

:

If I even remembered,

that's what we talked about.

657

:

But yes, I agree.

658

:

Like, I think that now you could

like with the public profiles and

659

:

everything, like you'd have a much

better sense of more of what's going on.

660

:

There's enough out there.

661

:

You know, you have the podcast series too.

662

:

I don't know that, you know,

on, uh, decisions that matter.

663

:

There's too much talk about exactly

what procurator does or what it is, but

664

:

yeah, there's art, there's like, you

know, fundraising articles and stuff.

665

:

There's enough that you can, like,

I think today you'd be able to

666

:

piece enough together from a few,

especially if you look up David.

667

:

Like, David's out there talking

about procurator all the time, right?

668

:

Becca Moran: Yeah.

669

:

And you can kind of piece together.

670

:

I think what's.

671

:

Important to the business by what they're

posting about on media or or whatever.

672

:

So I think that's a good point.

673

:

Um, uh, yes, I guess, um, the kind of

closing out the, the story, um, of how

674

:

you got hired at procurated and, uh,

it would maybe be just to talk a little

675

:

bit about after you got hired, kind of

what your, your journey was and, um.

676

:

Uh, yeah, if you could share a

little bit about, um, like, what your

677

:

responsibilities were and maybe how some

of that changed over time during the

678

:

Bryan Postelnek: role.

679

:

Yeah.

680

:

So after I got hired, uh, uh, y'all

had a great onboarding process.

681

:

Like there was a whole Asana project

I was given to go, uh, read and

682

:

watch videos for stuff and try to

understand the world of procurement.

683

:

Um, like I watched some, I was

like, ah, I kind of get it.

684

:

Uh, like let's keep moving forward.

685

:

Like I'm going to learn

best by just doing.

686

:

Um, and so, you know, I remember, you

know, I had that onboarding project and

687

:

a few of the things that I was like, give

me things to do, like, like, let's go,

688

:

let's start hitting the ground running.

689

:

Yeah, um, and I did, I was like, I

was like, you know, no time to waste.

690

:

Like, let's let me get into the processes.

691

:

Let me start taking on things.

692

:

Um, you know, I just did more and more

as, as time went on, um, you know, my

693

:

responsibilities when I started were,

you know, I was a senior product manager

694

:

and mostly responsible for the day to

day stuff, you know, probably waited on

695

:

a few strategic things here and there.

696

:

But, um, as time went on, you know, as,

as, uh, after my parental leave, um, in

697

:

particular, because, you know, I just

disappeared for 3 months, uh, like, yeah,

698

:

I go, uh, after that, you know, just

started increasing, um, my role, like I

699

:

worked on some, some big strategic ticket

items, as you might remember, um, do

700

:

a lot of user interviews for strategic

initiative around our series around.

701

:

Um, worked on, um, you

know, some big projects.

702

:

I managed a few folks while I was there.

703

:

Um, and then, yeah, it was just

increasing responsibility and

704

:

increasing, um, scope and purview.

705

:

I think when I started, you know,

I worked on some stuff for the

706

:

reviews and converting, you know,

we were using mandrel to send them.

707

:

We moved everything to HubSpot.

708

:

We optimized the review form since we

had like a few different versions of it.

709

:

Um, and then, you know, towards

as I got later on, you know, just.

710

:

Yeah.

711

:

Working on, you know, both sides of

the marketplace and thinking about,

712

:

you know, what's going to move the

needle for sales, what's going to move

713

:

the needle for the government side.

714

:

Um, you know, what

internal tools do we need?

715

:

Kind of like taking on the whole picture,

um, as, as group product manager.

716

:

Yeah,

717

:

Becca Moran: it's awesome.

718

:

What advice do you have for people

in product roles that are looking

719

:

to advance in the same way?

720

:

Like, are there any things that you

feel like Experiences that you've had or

721

:

skills that you've built that have been

particularly helpful in your ability

722

:

Bryan Postelnek: to advance.

723

:

Yeah, I think that's for advancing.

724

:

Uh, I think in general,

like, an attitude towards.

725

:

Like, like, being like, let me help you

with that thing, like, really being, um.

726

:

Someone who, you know, you see

someone who needs help or someone

727

:

who's working on something and just

putting yourself out there to say.

728

:

You know, hey, can I help with that?

729

:

You know, can I plug in?

730

:

And that really helps you grow and

learn about more parts of the business

731

:

or other areas of the product, um,

takes things off of people's plates.

732

:

And, you know, that builds

goodwill with folks.

733

:

Um, so it's a little bit relation,

relationship building as well.

734

:

And that helps your career, right?

735

:

Like, you know, you've learned more,

you've helped out with things you've,

736

:

you've, um, you've got a good reputation

within the company for being someone

737

:

who, um, Is helpful and knows their

product stuff and, you know, a lot more

738

:

and are willing and are good at it.

739

:

Right?

740

:

Like, you actually follow through

and everything you volunteer for.

741

:

Right?

742

:

Um, so I, I do think that that that

go getter attitude can really help

743

:

you in your career and not just

being like, it's not my problem.

744

:

We're just staying in the lane

and not willing to contribute or

745

:

help with anyone else's stuff.

746

:

Yeah.

747

:

Um, I think as far as skills, uh.

748

:

Yeah.

749

:

You know, it really depends on the type

of company you're going to work for.

750

:

Um, you know, I'm, I'm a

pretty good generalist.

751

:

Um, so I've picked up, you know, lots

of things over time, whether it be

752

:

user interviewing or data analysis

or, you know, how to just keep the

753

:

pipeline good for for engineering.

754

:

Um, I feel like I learned a lot by doing

and so just go by doing repping the

755

:

muscles, figuring out where you could

improve getting feedback from folks.

756

:

About where you can improve, um,

and then, you know, you learn

757

:

about where your weaker spots are.

758

:

And do you want to invest more in there

and become stronger at those things?

759

:

Um, we're not and then, you know,

tailor your career accordingly to

760

:

go work for companies that value

more, you know, people who can

761

:

pull all their own sequel and don't

really need a data and data analyst.

762

:

Like, there's companies that

are looking for PMs like that.

763

:

Um, or, you know, I worked at appropriate.

764

:

We didn't have any UX researchers.

765

:

So it was on you to go do it.

766

:

And I love doing that.

767

:

And so I got to build

more skills doing that.

768

:

I brought in skills ahead.

769

:

Um, so you kind of follow, you

know, listen to yourself, listen

770

:

to what's going on around you and

what's going on in the market.

771

:

Um, and kind of like

follow follow the rabbit.

772

:

Yeah, I

773

:

Becca Moran: agree.

774

:

And I think that, you know, product

roles are such the thezewar.

775

:

com Interdisciplinary roles that,

you know, like you said, they're this

776

:

idea of staying in your swim lane.

777

:

Like, I'm not sure

product has a swim lane.

778

:

Like, you kind of got the whole

pool, you know, so, um, you know,

779

:

I think anywhere where you see.

780

:

a way that you can be helping

the business achieve its goals.

781

:

Like to me, I'm always like,

yeah, that's in scope for my role.

782

:

I think that's a, a mentality, um, that I

know has benefit me throughout my career.

783

:

And I think product roles lend

themselves really well to that.

784

:

Um, because you do naturally just have.

785

:

Exposure to lots of different parts

of the business and lots of different

786

:

functions and, um, and then to your

point, because product rules can be so

787

:

different organization to organization.

788

:

You know, if you dabble a little bit

and explore and realize you like one

789

:

element of what you've been doing more

than other things, then yeah, there's

790

:

a role out there where that, that thing

that you like is a big part of the role.

791

:

I feel very fortunate to have

kind of landed in a career in

792

:

product because I do think it just

gives you so much optionality.

793

:

Um, it's fun for people who are,

you know, curious and like to keep

794

:

learning and explore new things.

795

:

Um, it's a really fun and

interesting career path for sure.

796

:

Um, well, I think we're

kind of transitioning to

797

:

wrapping up our time here.

798

:

Is there any other, um, topic that we

didn't touch on, um, or anything you want

799

:

to double back to, um, to elaborate on a

little bit more before we move into our.

800

:

We'll wrap up rapid fire questions.

801

:

Bryan Postelnek: Um, you know, I will.

802

:

Uh, I will say, I think that, um, I

don't think it was emphasized as much.

803

:

In talking about getting hired, is it

really didn't, um, no, that didn't matter

804

:

for procurator, but I didn't need to

leverage it for procurator, uh, for my 1st

805

:

job for Angie's list for this next job.

806

:

I really believe in the

power of asking for help.

807

:

And for leveraging your network, um,

I think it's, it's a huge part of, of

808

:

getting hired, especially in this market.

809

:

Um, uh, it's very helpful in

your career just to ask for help.

810

:

And, and, you know, it, it doesn't

make you look weak to ask for help.

811

:

Um, ask for help in the right

way, you know, shows that you're

812

:

willing to learn and that, um,

you're willing to be vulnerable

813

:

and you're looking to get better.

814

:

Um, so I would emphasize, absolutely

The importance of doing all that.

815

:

Um, and.

816

:

In context of getting hired, uh, for my

first job, uh, the one based in New York,

817

:

um, I got, I had applied for a business

development representative position.

818

:

Um, and I was like, oh, it sounds, I

sound like such a dummy on this podcast.

819

:

I'm like, I didn't know what I

was going to do at procuring.

820

:

Uh, you know, but my

821

:

Becca Moran: first job

was going to be either.

822

:

I was like, oh, I did have to

make cold calls and I was like,

823

:

oh, I didn't understand that

from the interview process.

824

:

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah, I, I applied

for this job and I was like, Oh,

825

:

it sounds like you get to work with

a bunch of different companies.

826

:

How cool is that?

827

:

Like, you know, and I talked with

the recruiter and he's like, like,

828

:

by the time I got had gotten there,

like I applied in like March, I heard

829

:

back in like June from the recruiter.

830

:

And he was like, why are you

applying for a sales role?

831

:

You have like this engineering degree.

832

:

Uh, I'm like, well, yeah, now

I'd like to get into product.

833

:

Um, he's like, you know, we have an

intern who isn't quite working out.

834

:

Um, you know, let's, let's,

uh, let's see if yeah.

835

:

Um, I can get you in for the role and,

you know, maybe they'll, they'll host two

836

:

interns here and, you know, I followed

up with him, you know, I was, I asked for

837

:

help, you know, you know, getting after

I got an internship, I asked for his help

838

:

on how to become a full time employee.

839

:

Um, you know, I really leveraged, uh,

the power of someone willing to help

840

:

me in, in my early career and then

at, um, at getting a job at answers

841

:

list, similarly, like, you know, I had

applied, didn't hear anything back.

842

:

I, you know.

843

:

LinkedIn messaged or maybe

even email, like the VP of HR.

844

:

I was like, Hey, look, I think

they could fit for this role.

845

:

Um, you know, and then they're like,

yeah, you would be like, you know, I

846

:

got set with a call for a recruiter and

then, you know, the rest is history.

847

:

Yeah, I think there really is power

to, you know, the hustle, the asking

848

:

for help, the leveraging your network,

um, in, in, you know, getting your job,

849

:

but also in, in working in product.

850

:

Becca Moran: I think that's a really

great point and something that like.

851

:

Yeah, from seeing that as a hiring

manager, like, automatically you get

852

:

points for, like, showing hustle and

initiative to, um, to get an interview.

853

:

I think that just like, I don't know.

854

:

There's part of it that is just kind

of like common sense that, like,

855

:

as the person hiring, you're like,

oh, I'm, I'm flattered that you're

856

:

so interested and you're pursuing

this, like, That that means a lot.

857

:

And, um, you know, I, I think

you're really smart about the way

858

:

that you leverage your network.

859

:

And, um, you know, I've, I've experienced,

I think, a similar thing in a different

860

:

context where, like, when I came to work

at procurated, one of my concerns was

861

:

like, oh, my gosh, as the first person

here, like, I'm not going to have,

862

:

like, when I don't know what to do,

I'm not going to have someone to ask.

863

:

Um, I can't remember who actually

kind of gave me this perspective,

864

:

but they were like, you, you

have a whole network of people.

865

:

You don't just have your

immediate company to turn to.

866

:

And, you know, looking back on

the last few years, I think of

867

:

all of the random people that I've

reached out to some of which, like.

868

:

I've reached out to people like, Oh

yeah, that person like sold me software

869

:

like days ago at, but like, they're

connected to someone I want to talk.

870

:

Like, all you have to do is ask.

871

:

And I consistently surprised by how

generous people are with their time.

872

:

And you know, part of it is

like earning that, right?

873

:

Like I'm not running around being a jerk

to people and then you help me, right?

874

:

Like be nice, be a good person.

875

:

Um, but yeah, like that stuff.

876

:

Does go a long way and are even very busy

senior people I have found are oftentimes

877

:

willing to help if you just ask.

878

:

So, um, I think that's really

great advice and, um, definitely

879

:

appreciate your perspective on that.

880

:

And of course, I love to see the hustle.

881

:

So, yeah.

882

:

Um, all right.

883

:

Are you ready for the rapid

884

:

Bryan Postelnek: fire?

885

:

I am ready for the rapid fire.

886

:

I would like to be fired at rapidly now.

887

:

Becca Moran: Okay.

888

:

I'm ready.

889

:

That just made me nervous for some reason.

890

:

Well, now I

891

:

Bryan Postelnek: expect it to be very...

892

:

How fast do I have to talk?

893

:

Yeah, I expect it to be very rapid.

894

:

Okay.

895

:

Becca Moran: Um, first question.

896

:

Could a friend or close family member

accurately describe what you do?

897

:

Bryan Postelnek: Uh, today, uh,

yes, because I'm interviewing.

898

:

And I'm unemployed, but no, you,

899

:

Becca Moran: for curated . Brian

said, Hey, Brian's mom.

900

:

What

901

:

Bryan Postelnek: does Brian do?

902

:

No, uh, no.

903

:

Uh, you know, a lot of the time, no.

904

:

You know, I, a lot of the time you,

I still get family members misp,

905

:

miss saying I'm a project manager.

906

:

Yes.

907

:

And I'm like, oh, I'm

not a project manager.

908

:

I, you know, I'm a product manager and

I get, I'm sure there's many product

909

:

people who also get a little bit

grumpy about, uh, the J and D swap.

910

:

Um, but, uh, but no, I've been trying

to describe it for years to, you know,

911

:

like, like my wife or to my parents and,

you know, they get like the gist and it's

912

:

like, you have to remember what I do.

913

:

I should really simplify

it to like, I just.

914

:

I just work with people , like I

get things done every now and then.

915

:

I'm a people person.

916

:

, I'm a people person.

917

:

That's, yeah.

918

:

Most of my job is just talking.

919

:

Uh, you know, it's,

920

:

Becca Moran: it's like there's

a challenge of explaining what

921

:

the company does, which I find is

like, oh yeah, fertile number one.

922

:

And then when people are like, but

like, what do you personally do?

923

:

I'm like, it's

924

:

Bryan Postelnek: amorphous.

925

:

. Yeah.

926

:

Yeah.

927

:

Like, I'm, I'm both everything

and nothing at the same time.

928

:

, like little omni fun.

929

:

Yeah.

930

:

I'm a little, uh, omnipotent.

931

:

Yeah, just all that one.

932

:

The all knowing or or is everywhere.

933

:

I think that one's omnipotent.

934

:

I think means I'm everywhere.

935

:

This is omnipresent omniscient.

936

:

Oh, gosh.

937

:

Oh, man.

938

:

There's three versions.

939

:

Someone's got to listen to this.

940

:

I hope that I work with someone who ends

up listening to this and they're like,

941

:

wow, he did a great job on that podcast.

942

:

Yeah.

943

:

We, we, we thought, we thought

we were getting one thing and he

944

:

didn't know his vocabulary of words.

945

:

Becca Moran: Speaking of

words, that's a good segue.

946

:

What is one like product or tech word

or phrase, you know, business lingo

947

:

thing that you wish you never had to

948

:

Bryan Postelnek: hear again?

949

:

Um, uh, you know, it has something

probably something to do with like,

950

:

uh, can I get an estimate on that?

951

:

Or like, can we do it faster?

952

:

Yeah.

953

:

When will it be done?

954

:

Those types of things.

955

:

I know I'll hear it again.

956

:

Um, but you know, it can be a little

bit, uh, uh, nails on the chalkboard

957

:

sometimes, uh, depending on when you're

being asked, I'm sure I'm guilty of it

958

:

too, like, but I try to ask in probably

other masked ways where it's like, you

959

:

know, what if we did this thing or what,

if we did that thing, how does it affect?

960

:

That I think maybe some of the

bluntness of, like, just wanting an

961

:

estimate, uh, is sometimes a little,

962

:

Becca Moran: uh, when you realize

how preposterous that question

963

:

actually is, like, oftentimes

you get asked that when, like.

964

:

The scope of what you're trying to

accomplish is completely undefined

965

:

and you're like, I don't know

how long it'll take to build.

966

:

I don't even know what we're talking

967

:

Bryan Postelnek: about.

968

:

Right.

969

:

Like, yeah, I can give you

something, but it's going to be

970

:

wrong by some order of magnitude.

971

:

Yeah.

972

:

Uh, so I become a lot

973

:

Becca Moran: more comfortable with

that for what it's worth over the

974

:

years of just being like, yes, here's.

975

:

Here's a date or a number and like,

with a very flimsy level of commitment

976

:

Bryan Postelnek: to that, as

long as everyone knows it's,

977

:

it's a flimsy commitment.

978

:

Like, like, I've worked in places where,

like, when they ask it, they mean it.

979

:

Yeah, you know, you better be right about

this because we're making plans around it.

980

:

Yeah, and I'm like, uh, like, we

shouldn't like, we're going to be wrong.

981

:

Like, please don't, please don't

982

:

Becca Moran: plan the rest of everything.

983

:

No matter how much time and effort we put

into estimating, we will still be wrong.

984

:

So just know

985

:

Bryan Postelnek: that.

986

:

Let's just get, if it's something

we definitely feel conviction around

987

:

doing, let's just start doing it.

988

:

Like, let's just know, let's know at least

it's going to take a year versus a month,

989

:

like, like on that scale, but like, don't

ask me for the drop dead date today.

990

:

Like we haven't even started.

991

:

Becca Moran: Um, I'll ask this in

a general way, uh, about kind of

992

:

like over the course of your career,

how often would you say that you

993

:

would actually talk to customers

or users in your role in product?

994

:

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah.

995

:

Uh, I would say, you know,

uh, on the order of monthly,

996

:

um, I wish it was more often.

997

:

Becca Moran: I thought you pushed us

as an organization to be more diligent

998

:

about having these conversations.

999

:

Yeah, it was like, it

:

00:55:37,020 --> 00:55:38,090

Bryan Postelnek: came in spurts.

:

00:55:38,470 --> 00:55:41,380

Um, a lot of the time we're like,

you know, I had, I had a question.

:

00:55:41,380 --> 00:55:42,870

I was like, let me go talk to folks.

:

00:55:43,060 --> 00:55:46,330

I, I really wanted to set up more of a

continuous process where, like, you know,

:

00:55:46,340 --> 00:55:48,510

had people talk to on a weekly basis.

:

00:55:48,950 --> 00:55:50,300

It's, it's.

:

00:55:50,950 --> 00:55:55,970

Yeah, oh, yeah, it's, it's a lot of

work, um, you know, between like,

:

00:55:55,970 --> 00:55:58,740

finding the people you want to talk

to, you know, what do you want to

:

00:55:58,740 --> 00:56:00,320

talk to them about consistently?

:

00:56:00,695 --> 00:56:03,495

Documenting synthesizing, like,

you know, there's a reason that

:

00:56:03,935 --> 00:56:07,435

you have UX researchers, uh,

you know, do, do that work.

:

00:56:07,435 --> 00:56:11,265

So it's easier to like, do like a campaign

and be like, here's like the 1 thing I'm

:

00:56:11,265 --> 00:56:13,645

going to go learn about at a given time.

:

00:56:14,395 --> 00:56:18,675

And bunched up all together, um,

but you can, you can do a lot of

:

00:56:18,675 --> 00:56:21,105

them, um, in, in good succession.

:

00:56:21,135 --> 00:56:24,645

I feel like I did like 30 within

like a quarter or something

:

00:56:24,665 --> 00:56:25,045

at one point procurated.

:

00:56:26,345 --> 00:56:30,075

Um, you know, it's just, it's

about really focusing on it.

:

00:56:30,355 --> 00:56:35,135

So, yeah, I, I think an ideal state,

it'd be like one to two times a week.

:

00:56:35,265 --> 00:56:37,725

I'd say that'd be like

super, super healthy.

:

00:56:37,725 --> 00:56:39,085

Like you're in touch with your customers.

:

00:56:39,085 --> 00:56:40,185

You have a good pulse on it.

:

00:56:40,795 --> 00:56:45,085

Um, uh, but I think like if I were

to average it out, like, you know,

:

00:56:45,595 --> 00:56:49,645

I probably Probably once a month

if you had to like spread it out.

:

00:56:50,300 --> 00:56:50,610

Becca Moran: Yeah.

:

00:56:52,280 --> 00:56:58,790

Um, what is a book or person

who has been, uh, that's been

:

00:56:58,790 --> 00:57:00,420

most influential in your career?

:

00:57:02,420 --> 00:57:06,000

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah, I think

the, yeah, I was, I was looking to

:

00:57:06,000 --> 00:57:07,550

see if I have Marty's book around.

:

00:57:07,660 --> 00:57:08,760

I think it's in the ottoman

:

00:57:08,760 --> 00:57:09,110

Becca Moran: over there.

:

00:57:09,120 --> 00:57:11,480

We referenced Marty on a first name basis.

:

00:57:11,970 --> 00:57:12,290

Yeah.

:

00:57:12,970 --> 00:57:13,250

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah.

:

00:57:13,280 --> 00:57:13,610

I wrote.

:

00:57:14,150 --> 00:57:15,830

I've seen him in enough videos.

:

00:57:15,830 --> 00:57:16,640

I've read his newsletter.

:

00:57:16,640 --> 00:57:17,440

I can call him Marty.

:

00:57:17,480 --> 00:57:18,130

I've emailed him.

:

00:57:18,130 --> 00:57:18,366

Didn't

:

00:57:18,366 --> 00:57:20,160

Becca Moran: you say, didn't you

really reach out to him with a

:

00:57:20,160 --> 00:57:20,860

Bryan Postelnek: question at one point?

:

00:57:21,050 --> 00:57:21,470

I did.

:

00:57:21,490 --> 00:57:21,650

Yeah.

:

00:57:21,650 --> 00:57:23,990

I don't remember the question is

anymore, but he writes you back.

:

00:57:24,030 --> 00:57:24,410

Like, yeah,

:

00:57:24,670 --> 00:57:26,740

Becca Moran: this, this just proves

the point I made here earlier.

:

00:57:27,140 --> 00:57:27,450

Bryan Postelnek: Just yeah.

:

00:57:27,450 --> 00:57:29,370

Like there was, there

was a, there was a guy.

:

00:57:29,400 --> 00:57:30,670

Um, I don't remember his name.

:

00:57:30,670 --> 00:57:32,700

I know his newsletter is ABC.

:

00:57:33,490 --> 00:57:34,010

Oh yeah.

:

00:57:34,070 --> 00:57:34,610

Fred Wilson.

:

00:57:34,610 --> 00:57:35,210

You Yeah.

:

00:57:35,210 --> 00:57:35,690

Fred Wilson.

:

00:57:35,690 --> 00:57:36,050

I emailed.

:

00:57:36,110 --> 00:57:39,230

He, he, he wrote about like a

Kickstarter campaign once, so I

:

00:57:39,230 --> 00:57:40,460

emailed him about the headphones.

:

00:57:40,460 --> 00:57:43,510

He was saying We should like

totally get on Kickstarter.

:

00:57:43,750 --> 00:57:44,470

And he wrote me back.

:

00:57:44,530 --> 00:57:45,550

I was like, yeah, yeah.

:

00:57:45,670 --> 00:57:48,040

People, people write stuff

like to write you back.

:

00:57:48,430 --> 00:57:48,700

Yeah.

:

00:57:48,760 --> 00:57:51,710

Um, so, uh, I'm gonna say

:

00:57:51,740 --> 00:57:52,190

Becca Moran: Marty.

:

00:57:52,250 --> 00:57:52,690

Marty Ka.

:

00:57:52,760 --> 00:57:53,060

It's Kagan,

:

00:57:53,450 --> 00:57:53,570

Bryan Postelnek: right?

:

00:57:53,575 --> 00:57:54,290

Marty Kagan, yeah.

:

00:57:54,295 --> 00:57:54,530

Yeah.

:

00:57:54,530 --> 00:57:55,100

Marty Kagan.

:

00:57:55,340 --> 00:57:56,120

The inspired,

:

00:57:56,570 --> 00:57:56,930

Becca Moran: inspired, inspired.

:

00:57:57,140 --> 00:57:57,560

And what was the

:

00:57:57,560 --> 00:57:58,130

Bryan Postelnek: second one?

:

00:57:58,130 --> 00:57:58,640

Empowered.

:

00:57:58,645 --> 00:57:59,300

Uh, empowered.

:

00:57:59,600 --> 00:58:02,030

And then I think he also

co-wrote the most recent one.

:

00:58:02,855 --> 00:58:07,955

Um, I don't remember what it's called

anymore, but it's also like a one, one

:

00:58:07,965 --> 00:58:11,075

word, impactful word, uh, type of thing.

:

00:58:11,855 --> 00:58:16,845

Uh, uh, but yeah, I would say that

one was really impactful because that

:

00:58:16,845 --> 00:58:20,155

really opened up my eyes to, you know,

what product could be, what are some

:

00:58:20,155 --> 00:58:21,645

different ways to think about product.

:

00:58:21,655 --> 00:58:23,865

And it's in a nice, like it's in

one book, one book or two books.

:

00:58:23,865 --> 00:58:24,035

Yeah.

:

00:58:25,875 --> 00:58:26,575

Very readable.

:

00:58:26,605 --> 00:58:27,025

Very.

:

00:58:27,315 --> 00:58:30,475

What's also interesting is like

when you read a book like that.

:

00:58:30,925 --> 00:58:34,875

Um, like I read it at my first job

and I was like, I don't get it and

:

00:58:36,445 --> 00:58:37,735

like, in like the middle of that job.

:

00:58:37,755 --> 00:58:39,015

And then you read it again.

:

00:58:39,215 --> 00:58:41,835

It was either at the end of my time there

or at the beginning of Angie's list.

:

00:58:42,255 --> 00:58:45,545

I'm like, okay, like this

clicks in a different way now.

:

00:58:45,955 --> 00:58:49,835

Um, so I'd say there's some power

to revisiting some of these concepts

:

00:58:49,835 --> 00:58:52,195

and these books at different

stages in your career and being

:

00:58:52,195 --> 00:58:54,725

like, oh, I know this pretty well,

but I forgot about that thing.

:

00:58:54,735 --> 00:58:56,585

Or that's a really

like, he has great ways.

:

00:58:57,345 --> 00:59:01,735

I've referenced a few times, um,

how to know that people are like

:

00:59:01,735 --> 00:59:03,335

invested in your product or idea.

:

00:59:03,335 --> 00:59:07,085

And he has some great tips about like, you

know, if people are willing to give time,

:

00:59:07,085 --> 00:59:09,695

if people are willing to give money, if

they're willing to give, like use their

:

00:59:09,695 --> 00:59:11,865

social clout, you know, to reference it.

:

00:59:11,865 --> 00:59:15,305

Like those are all like good signs

as indicators, uh, people will

:

00:59:15,315 --> 00:59:18,025

like what people are actually

invested in what you're building.

:

00:59:18,515 --> 00:59:21,125

And so it's like, those are great things

to like, you know, go reference again

:

00:59:21,125 --> 00:59:23,435

in a book and like reinforces learning.

:

00:59:24,370 --> 00:59:25,690

Yeah, love that.

:

00:59:26,090 --> 00:59:26,680

Becca Moran: Love Marty.

:

00:59:27,740 --> 00:59:28,130

All right.

:

00:59:28,150 --> 00:59:29,400

Last question for you.

:

00:59:29,900 --> 00:59:35,490

So you, you are on this career path

in product, but, uh, when you were

:

00:59:35,490 --> 00:59:36,950

a kid, what was your dream job?

:

00:59:36,960 --> 00:59:37,820

What did you think you

:

00:59:37,820 --> 00:59:38,330

Bryan Postelnek: would be doing?

:

00:59:39,630 --> 00:59:43,680

Uh, gosh, there's so many things

I thought I'd be doing that.

:

00:59:43,680 --> 00:59:48,250

Like, I've, I've done so many different

things in my life at this point, like,

:

00:59:48,260 --> 00:59:54,970

uh, but I, in terms of my career,

um, you know, I don't, I don't know

:

00:59:54,970 --> 00:59:56,550

that I ever, like, had like, uh.

:

00:59:57,225 --> 01:00:03,735

Uh, I, the only one I distinctly

remember, uh, probably because I was told.

:

01:00:04,115 --> 01:00:06,715

I wouldn't be good at it because

:

01:00:06,715 --> 01:00:09,085

Becca Moran: it gave me this

nice little chip on your

:

01:00:09,085 --> 01:00:09,515

Bryan Postelnek: shoulder.

:

01:00:09,615 --> 01:00:10,025

Yeah.

:

01:00:10,175 --> 01:00:10,515

Right.

:

01:00:10,515 --> 01:00:12,085

Like, like, you know, leading.

:

01:00:12,195 --> 01:00:15,455

So, like, you know, as, as a kid, so not

a teenager when I was like, okay, I'm

:

01:00:15,455 --> 01:00:21,125

going to go be an engineer, um, as a kid,

um, at some point I wanted to be a rabbi.

:

01:00:21,740 --> 01:00:27,200

Uh, yeah, yes, I believe I've

told this before I procurated, uh,

:

01:00:27,610 --> 01:00:32,400

and, uh, the rabbi at the, at the

synagogue, uh, deterred me from it

:

01:00:32,470 --> 01:00:37,000

from some reason or another, um, which

every now and then you still hear

:

01:00:37,000 --> 01:00:39,669

about, uh, spoken in my household.

:

01:00:40,980 --> 01:00:44,990

About like, oh, if that rabbi hadn't

said that to you, maybe you'd be a rabbi.

:

01:00:45,000 --> 01:00:45,020

If

:

01:00:45,040 --> 01:00:50,930

Becca Moran: you, like, knowing what

you know about yourself now, do you

:

01:00:50,940 --> 01:00:52,390

think you would be a good rabbi?

:

01:00:53,120 --> 01:00:55,490

Bryan Postelnek: Um, I

think I'd be a decent rabbi.

:

01:00:55,700 --> 01:00:56,920

I have no idea what makes

:

01:00:56,920 --> 01:00:57,140

Becca Moran: a good

:

01:00:58,570 --> 01:00:58,610

Bryan Postelnek: rabbi.

:

01:00:58,620 --> 01:00:58,930

Right.

:

01:00:59,320 --> 01:01:05,370

Like, uh, I think that, well, knowing

what I know myself about now, um, you

:

01:01:05,370 --> 01:01:09,870

know, my, my, my, uh, religiosity.

:

01:01:09,870 --> 01:01:09,884

Yeah.

:

01:01:10,415 --> 01:01:12,935

I really isn't there, um, but he's

:

01:01:13,085 --> 01:01:13,775

Becca Moran: probably a pretty

:

01:01:13,785 --> 01:01:17,915

Bryan Postelnek: core tenant of it,

but I feel like the, the interpersonal

:

01:01:17,915 --> 01:01:22,085

relationship angle of being, um, a

rabbi, like, that's, that's where,

:

01:01:22,085 --> 01:01:24,705

like, I think, uh, I might succeed.

:

01:01:25,005 --> 01:01:27,655

I'm sure there's some, some

stuff I could do on the margins

:

01:01:27,695 --> 01:01:30,919

to, uh, to, to, you know.

:

01:01:31,400 --> 01:01:34,660

Know how to talk to people better

or or listen in better ways.

:

01:01:34,700 --> 01:01:35,820

There's a good book on that.

:

01:01:35,900 --> 01:01:37,900

Um, we read it.

:

01:01:37,910 --> 01:01:39,140

There's a book club at Angie's.

:

01:01:39,140 --> 01:01:39,860

I suppose the name of the book.

:

01:01:40,460 --> 01:01:42,120

I'm going to remember it at some point.

:

01:01:42,400 --> 01:01:45,700

Um, it has to do with, like,

listening to both sides of the story.

:

01:01:45,700 --> 01:01:47,210

It's probably also on a bookshelf.

:

01:01:47,280 --> 01:01:49,210

Yeah, I'm putting the show notes.

:

01:01:49,210 --> 01:01:53,200

Brian remembered the book that he read

once that he vaguely alluded to at

:

01:01:53,200 --> 01:01:57,480

the end of the podcast about talking

to people about talking to people.

:

01:01:57,900 --> 01:01:58,490

Uh, yeah.

:

01:01:58,670 --> 01:02:00,610

But it's, it's a, it's a great book.

:

01:02:00,610 --> 01:02:02,840

You just, you just learn

about listening to both sides.

:

01:02:03,740 --> 01:02:03,920

An

:

01:02:03,930 --> 01:02:08,910

Becca Moran: alternate universe where

you had become a rabbi and then made

:

01:02:09,560 --> 01:02:14,890

your pivot into product and then like

created some sort of software for rabbis.

:

01:02:15,870 --> 01:02:16,450

Bryan Postelnek: I'm sure they can.

:

01:02:16,560 --> 01:02:18,110

I don't know what that

software would do, but.

:

01:02:18,525 --> 01:02:23,395

Honestly, uh, software for rabbis,

uh, would either be, uh, I think they

:

01:02:23,395 --> 01:02:27,465

know enough about like the, the, um,

like the Torah and everything, so

:

01:02:27,465 --> 01:02:31,025

they probably don't need that, but

they might need like a CRM for like

:

01:02:31,025 --> 01:02:35,315

managing, you know, relationships with

different folks in their communities.

:

01:02:35,465 --> 01:02:35,875

Yeah.

:

01:02:35,925 --> 01:02:40,555

Um, because you, you do with a

lot of personality, just like

:

01:02:40,985 --> 01:02:44,285

just generate, generate something

for me to say about this passage

:

01:02:44,485 --> 01:02:47,185

while conducting, um, services.

:

01:02:47,460 --> 01:02:48,260

That would be a good one.

:

01:02:48,490 --> 01:02:50,210

Um, but I feel like that's just your, uh,

:

01:02:50,480 --> 01:02:51,190

Becca Moran: your favorite rabbi.

:

01:02:51,690 --> 01:02:52,130

Bryan Postelnek: Yeah.

:

01:02:52,530 --> 01:02:52,820

Yeah.

:

01:02:52,910 --> 01:02:53,210

Yeah.

:

01:02:53,210 --> 01:02:54,680

Anyone, anyone use that idea?

:

01:02:54,680 --> 01:02:55,650

I'm not going to pursue it.

:

01:02:56,440 --> 01:02:57,760

Feel free to make software for rabbis.

:

01:02:58,850 --> 01:02:59,480

Becca Moran: Incredible.

:

01:03:00,180 --> 01:03:03,310

Um, well, this has been so fun.

:

01:03:03,410 --> 01:03:08,000

It has been a pleasure talking

to you as always, and, uh,

:

01:03:08,080 --> 01:03:09,850

recounting the story with you.

:

01:03:09,890 --> 01:03:10,880

And I hope that.

:

01:03:11,155 --> 01:03:15,995

Other people find it remotely

as entertaining as I do, uh, and

:

01:03:15,995 --> 01:03:19,385

learn something from it and find

some, some good insights here.

:

01:03:19,385 --> 01:03:20,695

So thank you again.

:

01:03:20,745 --> 01:03:21,195

Appreciate.

:

01:03:21,605 --> 01:03:24,875

You coming on the show

and giving us your time.

:

01:03:25,655 --> 01:03:26,175

Bryan Postelnek: Well, thank you.

:

01:03:26,185 --> 01:03:27,165

Thank you for having me back up.

:

01:03:27,235 --> 01:03:28,625

Always like same thing.

:

01:03:28,765 --> 01:03:29,835

Love chatting with you today.

:

01:03:30,095 --> 01:03:35,405

Hope people find this, um, you know, while

you're driving or working out or whatever

:

01:03:35,425 --> 01:03:39,585

you might be doing while you listen to us,

um, you know, let us know what you thought

:

01:04:00,345 --> 01:04:02,105

Tim Winkler: calling all

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