The Maestro Mindset: The Builders

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    The Meaning of a Builder

    A builder is someone who creates things that don’t exist or modifies something in a positive way. What excites me most about building at Maestro is seeing my fingerprints on the product. When I suggest a change, I see it implemented and I see the impact it has on customers.

    A builder is someone who wants to create something simply for the sake of creating it. You just enjoy the process. Even if you won the lottery, you’d still want to do it. It’s like being a real musician. You’d still continue making music even after you are wildly successful. You should be thinking about the thing you are building even when you’re doing simple things like taking a shower. You don’t need to be obsessed with it, but you will have it on your mind often and will be repeatedly and naturally drawn to it.

    A builder is someone who enjoys tinkering with things versus following a set plan. When building things, very rarely does everything go according to the blueprint. A true builder is able to roll with that, make accommodations, and pivot according to how things unfold.

    Why Builders are important to Maestro

    It’s important to have this mindset because we are so small. For us to be successful the product needs to evolve quickly and based on our customers’ feedback. The product team on their own can only do so much. They can only talk to so many customers. So if everyone has this mindset, it spreads the ownership around and that pushes the product forward. If we relied on a single team to be builders, we’d miss out on a huge segment of feedback and opportunities that other folks have based on their experiences, talking to customers, and talking to other people.

    What we Love about a Team of Builders

    Creating something on your own is truly satisfying, but to create something with a group of people heavily bought into building the same thing, is so much fun.

    The level of innovation is awesome. I learn something new every day. Our product can do something new every day. I am surrounded by really smart people and because of that, I am constantly learning.

    The Builders' Mindset in Action

    I tailored the DraftKings KPI dashboard to their specific needs. It was quite a long journey that took several months to build. I am proud of owning that process and seeing the impact it had on the organization and all the awesome feedback we got from it. More generally, I work on a lot of other KPI dashboard projects, and seeing my suggestions come to life in the app is gratifying.

    A lot of my job is building things that don’t exist. As a sales engineer, a lot of what I am doing is pushing product innovation and building those into my sales process. Screen Capture Moments and creating AutoQA metrics for Screen Capture Moments, is something I was building value around and into the sales process far before it ever existed in the product. This then pushed the product team to build and develop that so that it would meet the customers’ expectations.

    I was one of the very first Maestro members and engineers. I helped build our very robust ETL pipeline which is the backbone of Maestro’s first value prop to customers. It is the means by which we pull data in from tools like Salesforce and Zendesk to then run metrics and deep reporting on. In general, I have a proclivity to want to build home-grown tools versus using existing ones.

    Examples of things Built Recently

    One of the really exciting things about the KPI dashboard is that you do have to build it every time. It's not just an out-of-the-box thing. It's super nuanced to what the customer needs. It pushes you to be a builder so that it demos well and is impactful for customers. We just did a demo for a prospect and I built another KPI Dashboard. This demo was in Texas, and I didn’t know until the week before that I was going to be there. I jammed on it with Nora the morning of the demo and I think it landed really well for the prospect. While I did not build the product, I definitely built the experience for the customer and hopefully we win that deal and it's a happy ending to the story.

    Maestro is pivoting into a vertical BI platform. We realized about a year ago that we can do some much more with the data on our platform so that our customers have greater QA and reporting capabilities. The pivot, however, is a complex and expensive one, especially at the scale we want to do it at. We ended up building what we called “Small Duck” which had to optimally compact all the elements that we need to run reports on into a file-based reporting system. It’s pretty much home-grown but the end result of it is that we can get a much cheaper and faster reporting system than if we had taken the typical approach of using a tool like RedShift or another standard database tool to run queries on it. This project was fun and challenging and has become the backbone of this new vertical BI direction we’re going into.

    I’ve been building this really cool dashboard for a prospect without having their actual data integrated. My goal is to have the data on the dashboard clickable and robust. I started it last week and got it to a good enough place that I could do an initial demo. Now I’m in the final stages of perfecting it.

    Builders at Maestro

    Outside of product and engineering, a lot of other people at Maestro are incredible at building relationships which is a totally different skill but also critically important. Take Roshni, George, and Mel for example. They are phenomenal relationship builders. I'm always in awe of the relationships they build with people and how quickly they get people in their fan club. In my opinion, relationship-building is even more important than the product-building in a lot of ways, but it all comes together in really great ways for our customers at the end of the day.

    Robby is such a builder. He is quite literally in the tool building AutoQA metrics for our customers. He knows this part of the product and its use cases better than many people at Maestro. He spends a lot of time with the sales team sharing some of the most impactful use cases for our prospects. He flew to Dallas recently to help me and Roshni, one of our AEs, to help demonstrate the product at a prospect’s office. I have since incorporated some of his talk tracks into my own demos.

    Alex, has been one of the main persons helping to build data sets for our vertical BI platform. He epitomizes the builders mindset. He is experimenting on different things all the time and I can tell he truly just enjoys what he gets to work on and taking tons of ownership of these things.

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