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Gonçalo Gaiolas - VP Product Outsystems

by Productized Podcast
December 16th 2020
Although Outsystems is an example of Low Code, the focus of the company is not on code but on PRODUCTIVITY. Creating platforms that have an impact on teams, Low code is one way to achieve this goal bu... More
Hi and welcome to the prototype podcast. If you haven't subscribed already, you can find the prototype podcast from the favorite podcast player app and you can subscribe from there. This is our show. We're a talk with product visors and innovators and cover the stories behind great product experiences and white matters to innovators and makers like you. E o Privatize Podcast Broad I Stokes. My name is Sandra Marquee and I were co host today, along with special co host are No Brito. And we are We were supposed to be the same studio today, but we have been rounded to to the current block down both countries, Portugal and friends, or, to be more more precise, Lisbon and Paris. Um and um, yeah, let me tell you a little bit about Arnaud

. So Arnaud, over Britain's from various friends, is a principal product manager at a company called Screen, and he is ensuring product strategy aligns with the company. Andi is also animating the product management chapter. Providing guidance to other product manager designers working in different products spots is also good. Strapping the new observe product line is a very passionate about impact of new tech knowledge is on the world's with a passion off for software development since his childhood. I didn't know that, uh, and is now capitalizing on what it builds on on building products that are solving fundamental problems. So it started his first company, Money, shared video notes in 2020 12, and that was part off the force cohort off the Imagine K 12 accelerator, based in Silicon Valley. Our guest today is a solid geology, the VP of product's off

out systems. So thank you for being with us today on Musalo has made customer experience, digital strategy and software development. Specialty is obsessed with creating digital experiences for customers that speed up their success, using technologies and processing improvement to create leaner internal operations and re imagining the role of the digital no in the modern company. In his own words, Gonzalo is part kick part digital guy, part leader Polites work where technology pushes business over the edge and where digital is no longer a service department. But the true leader in the company, Musalo Joint Out Systems, he 12 and to 2000 and five. So that was quite a long time ago has a software engineer and has since worked in or with almost every team inside the company. And I have seen your linked in its quite active

because it's been all around company Onda. For those that don't know about systems, Of course, all systems is, ah, local platform, which provides the tools for companies to develop and manage Omni Channel enterprise applications. The out systems platform is the signs of dramatically accelerated deployment off essential application applications while also delivering unprecedented levels of flexibility, enabling customers to develop continuously and evolve their applications. Has business needs, the technology trends evolve. So, um, um, I wanted to start this, but before that, I don't know if you want to say a couple of words about yourself and about products stories and why we're doing this today. Yeah, thanks. Thanks. I'm ready for having me. First. Wish would be with you in the Senate is born. But the cabbie decided otherwise. But until next time, I guess I think you said it all. But just maybe, to talk

about public story, so I'd say we were smarter, equivalent off product ties. We'll meet up gathering product lovers in Paris with a strong focus on stories and experiences. So our goal is not to teach you about something, but invite the best people on the theme eso I think tonight to talk about everything. No code low code and the impact on the product in the future. There's no better place to be even a bigger with the tree of use of fixed again. Probably. Thank you for for being here with us today. We have, like, we were discussing this and how to do this today. So council, we will be, um, kind of doing this together. Okay. In the beginning, I will be doing most of the questions, but then are no will probably take it from from the end on so 11 off. The things that we are wondering is we have seen a bunch of your presentations

in YouTube And look, everybody that I spoke about you and I did some, you know, I did query Some people e have to do some research and people who is very excited Guy is he really loves what he does. Eso what drives you? What is the most thrilling thing about your job? What? Why? Why do you have this energy? Because you know, you know, it's it's hard to have this energy level, especially every single day. So how do you have this energy level? Oh, that's Ah, that's a great question. And I'm glad that's the the thing they shared with you about me. But yes, So before I start and I'll go into that. And second, I just wanted to take a moment to recognize product ties. I remember with product, Eyes came on board as a conference. It was very early on, I guess. Even in the whole, I'd say the European product

management movement. I wasn't the product manager back then, but it was already like, These guys are onto something. And I remember ascending people to the conference early on on Really, uh, so just highlighting the effort you guys did to build that community from from many years ago. So So congrats on that. And on the vision of doing that, it's it's really inspiring, and everybody, every every time we send somebody to the conference, they come back, refresh reenergized with a bunch of new ideas and just, you know, with all the good speakers that you guys have. So, so kudos to that included stood part of dancing the Practice. Um, back to back to your back to your very interesting opening question around. You know what makes me think and what makes me go forward? Um, I do feel I am naturally enthusiastic person about the world. And generally I like to think of this as a sort of intellectually curious about what makes the world go around and

what impact do things have. And I my mind, is always an overdrive trying to absorb everything that I can, um, but specifically in my job, I guess there are a couple of things that I would highlight. The first one is the constant flow off impact that we have in the company and in the space and the reach that we have in terms of touching millions of peoples and in their lives. On many, many examples from, you know, people that change career because they encountered out systems, they were able to increase their livelihood because now they are, you know, there are digital maker. There are no new programmer. That's that's those are my favorite stories, really. Just impacting somebody's life really makes me wake up in the morning and just and just go for it. Um, the second thing is impacting organizations. We go into customer advisory councils and customers tell us, Look, before we used to literally, I think their words before we used to suck. And now we can go into

meetings and we can say, Yeah, no, we can actually do that thing you're asking And, you know, we come into the work and we are happy now. And a few weeks A few months ago, I had a customer tell us I used to be column era. We used to be callin mirror. So for the ones that don't get the reference, it's an old cartoon, I guess. Very European Italian, I guess. Where there's a duck and the duck is always like, uh, complaining and whining. And we used to be a column marrow, and now we are the road runner. When somebody tells you that about the work you're putting out there like we're essentially transform their lives for the better on their they're happier and they're happier Human beings. It's professional. It's very hard to not be excited and we have, like, you know, thousands of stories like this, so it's very hard not to be excited. The final thing is, I think, um, in the context of where we exist as a company and as our systems, I think we establish we were able to establish, uh, really fantastic

culture and the people we attract, the people we work with. A lot of us doing this for the first time, like a common theme, is a lot of us are doing are trying to solve a problem or are doing a job for the first time or are really going where nobody else has gone or very few people have gone. You know, how can you not be excited on? Do you talked about my hectic career path? I don't I think I have a career bad. I have new challenges and new things I like to learn, and that's also a breeze, right? Because every every few years I go, I go, go. I get to be, ah, beginner again. And that's really cool, right? Instead of just being extremely good at one thing, I get to be a beginner that you think like that is happening with product management. Me Right now I am a complete beginner in product management on I'm learning assassins again. And that's exciting on your VP of product. So, yeah, I mean, that's great. That z beginner beginner size. I think people always underestimate

beginners. Eyes, um, you know, beginner size are such a powerful force off the universe, because when you see things for the first time, you don't know what's impossible, right? Eso you, you ain't for impossible sometimes, and that's really refreshing. So speaking about impossibilities, um, or possibilities for the limit off the current possibilities, which are clearly marked by the current situation, How has go V 19 impacted out systems business? And you know, I T companies in general don't seem to be, has has affected has, you know, um, restaurants and and that kind of business. So I guess there's there's 22 ways to see this question. One is, of course, the business of all systems itself. But the other way is how is

is all systems leveraging digital transformation to help companies that are being impacted by Kofi It and you have you guys have any specific work? And I know that you have been very active in some off the forums in Portugal, especially in the spring, um, to crash developed a number of initiatives. But can you can you? Can you give us a glimpse of what? Are the current with out there? Absolutely, Absolutely. I mean, first to say that obviously, as a digital business, we have been, fortunately, I would say not. Not nearly as impacted the healthcare culture, which you know. It's just heartbreaking to see what are other our fellows are going through. It's very much heartbreaking it as a digital business. We see two things we see in certain areas. Tremendous acceleration of demand people, because you think of it this way that he competitive differentiator

off quote unquote local platform. It's productivity and speed is that would be able to really be move fast into building these digital things that are unique to you. In this context, it's hard to think of anything that's more important than speed. If you don't have speed that you're done right, you're not gonna live for the next quarter. So we saw a lot of acceleration in a lot of customers that we used to take, you know, let's take the procurement processes and the buying process of enterprise s B two B software would take a while, and they're just like accelerating. On the other hand, Autism's does business with 23 different industries. We did see in the trees where some projects and expansions were canceled and we ended up, Um, you know, having to work with those customers to make sure that they continued but in a way way didn't expand their. So overall, we continue to grow significantly. I would say we were, let's say, actually positively to most part, positively impacted because it just made local

more normal, more, more, more interesting, if you will, to the world at large. Andi, just just in terms of what we're doing to help. I mean a couple of things. I I am incredibly proud, incredibly proud, really. Off the work that our our People ops team has done internally with our internal community and our external community. It zine a phenomenal, um, way were so professional in handling people, sending people away constant communication. It was really hallmark of very well executed transition. On what that did. Interestingly, we did that very early on in March. They send about everybody home. Everything just continued to work, no issues. We had a model that was whatever works for you. Whatever works for you works for our systems, and people were like, completely blown away by the response of the company. And what that ended up happening was freed a

lot of mental time for us to be able to help. So in the course of the weekend, over a weekend, we put together what we call it Kobe 19 response program for our community, where we created sort of a site where people could, I give ideas to to use our technology. We would sponsor the Programs Way would use our network of partners to participate. There were many, many things. We launched cultural programs where people, people could sponsor artists. We did applications for finding what was open at the time. We had a really, really cool project that's still ongoing for mental health. All of that was done, not by us. It was essentially because our mind was free from concerns with ourselves and our family. From the way the company treated us, we immediately pivoted to help our community, and we have a fantastic community of partners on developers that took their own time on top of our software and and really made an impact. So, you know, to summarize

, I think we've seen positive impact from a business perspective in terms of acceleration of acceptance and digital. And we've we've taken some of that positive impact and sort of doubled down on helping the community whenever we can. We also just a final example. We also shared every single tool we built internally. Things like to control how you go into the office and whether you can go into the office to book a table. We made that available on a zone open source project, and a lot of customers are not taking that and using it on their own. Their own sort of workforce is so, you know, all in all, I think we did very well in terms of this. Obviously we would rather not having to go through this is heart breaking. But like most digital companies, we we did see an acceleration of demand and acceptance And what our power users power users off out systems asking for now. Do you see you see a shift there? Do you see You see

any, um, seismic changes or is it still business as usual. No, I mean, it's a very good question. Uh, so so bit of a background history, you know, out systems and local in general, before local was the thing. We were always traditionally very good at what we call sort of work. Full applications, internal applications complex. Very custom, but mostly internal applications. And for the first, But I guess 14 to 15 years of the company 90% of what we did was that was the score systems. They're really you know, you could buy off the shelf now. Very cool to very cool. Things are happening. We're getting used in more and more mission critical systems, mission critical and customer experience. Mobile labs, things that are, um, five years ago, if I was to tell, you know, we're gonna be building the home banking system for one of the top 10 banks in the world. You would be said, Come on, Castle. You know, go. That's never

possible. And that is happening now. So we're on one hand. We're getting pushed to what we call serious applications. That's that's perfect, right? It really aligns with our vision of maximum productivity for those applications. On the other hand, because of the no code explosion and all of that, like everybody wants to participate. We're also getting pulled, too dramatic simplification of the product. So get way that we can get, like 10 million people to use the product, be two hours of training. So it's It's very interesting to be at the center at the epicenter of this movement, where you're trying on one hand to really compete with enterprise grade mission critical stuff, but at the same time and make make your products accessible for for for all of us. And we're getting asked these two things equally vehemently from customers. Right, s. So it's an interesting product management challenge to have for sure, yeah, in terms of challenge. Well, I guess one of the big challenges right now you have, what, 1200 employees or something like that

. So it it becomes difficult to innovate with so many people. So how does the company your size continue being innovative? That za great question. I mean, a lot of it comes from being diligent around. What are the things that you want to innovate around? I think innovation part for the sake of innovation is quite hard to manage. What we try to do is to be very diligent about setting the right vision around which people should innovate for meaning. Here's our goal. Here is what we want the world to look like in about three years. Now let's the way to get there is completely up for people and just starting at that end game and then working backwards and letting people innovate on the how you get there is a thing that's typical, I think, typically gets lost in the pressure off. Very short term results, very incremental things. And and the

art of setting these goals is super interesting, because if you if you set a small enough goal, people will will do incremental stuff, which is fine. If you have too far off gold, people will freeze. But setting the right ambition, right? You know, we're gonna go to the moon on this decade. It really sets people on fire. So I think never that's that's incompetent leadership to never let go off this idea of vision. The second thing is more tactical. Is what systems do you have in place to remove waste? How do you measure goals? How do you and meetings that eventually crop up? How do you modernize your own legacy? Both process people and technology and just diligently have programs to to remove company legacy as a whole, not just the technology, but remove company legacy diligently working towards thinking of the product of the company as a product and sometimes staying down the different types of debt that you accumulate over time is critical. So we try to do those things, those two things that you

know as often as possible. But it's hard when I mean when you double the company every two years, it's hard because things that we used to work all of a sudden don't work anymore like overnight, and you have to go fix that. So you spend a lot of time on just keeping up with growth on Not so much. I'm thinking about the future so more more laws apply to company girls. But Saul, what what's that moon Moonshot vision you have for the next? The next big thing for our systems on DMA? Maybe just trying to bridge that with look, 2000 and five. I remember out systems maybe the first time. Um, actually 2000 and five because I was working as I t manager for a local company here. Um, So you you were in the company in a very early stage and you've been through lots off through the evolution off the company. But the vision was pretty much there. It was already low code since the beginning, but nobody was

actually talking about low code in 2000 and five, with exception off you guys. So in one hand, it seems that the zeitgeist off local, this finally arrived. So you are in the right momentum. The momentum is really cool now. And what? How do you see the future? And in retrospect, for this last 15 years, what is the most surprising development you've seen in the industry since you started? Very good questions. So I my the first part of my answer might be a little I don't know, shocking or we don't care about local local does not the definition of who we are. We don't define ourselves in the context of the category. Okay, because nobody nobody would say that at least from an external site, right? No, I understand. I mean way, obviously from a messaging and conversational perspective. We use it to our advantage we needed. But internally, when we're thinking about where we want to go next, what we think is how do we make our customers

100 times more productive than they are today? Local is one way again, back to the innovation topic. Local is one way of how we help customers do that. But applying AI to software automation is another way. Fixing the problem off ideation off. What do I make? It's another way, uh, into fixing. The problem of the connection between business people and designers and product owners and developers is another way. So we think of all of those as pertaining to our mission off making customers 100 times more productive. And, you know, we've we've it would be stupid for us to not right the way we started, which is this idea of local. But if you're asking me, you know, what do you think about the next 3 to 5 years? We think it's 100 times more productive for things that matter for really complex hi high value applications for your for our customers, the universe of that. This we don't wanna

be the platform where you build all of your personal little things and, you know, we have billions of users, but everybody is doing things you could do in excel or whatever. That's not division Division is how do we get a team? A very diverse team, people coming from all parts of the business. And how do we make this very small team building a matter of weeks? Custom built enterprise, great mission, critical system. And that's it. And we're going to use whatever tools we can to do that. We're gonna use cloud native architectures. We're gonna use low code, no code, even high code if we needed. Although we're not believers in that because, you know, it reduces the amount of people that can participate in these things. Um, but we're gonna use all of those tools to help customers be 100 times more productive in with any alternative that they have. That's the That's the vision proud systems and is quite ambitious. I guess I have a question for that, But what do you expect to to see the next big areas off value creation for our systems and which areas which which sectors which industry? Eso

we are seeing tremendous impact or tremendous pool from what you would traditionally consider laggard industries. I think I think we're in the sort of in the crossing the chasm model we're getting to the majority in late majority, where a lot of companies that are traditionally, or industries like financial services, for example, which is being completely disrupted, their waking up and they're becoming software companies. So that's That's certainly speaking a health care companies as well. Everybody's going literally going 0% analog. That's what we heard from a customer the other day. Like we wanna go 0% analog Now we want to do it fast us and and just helping these companies become 100 times more productive is fantastically difficult. Ah, lot of it is because it's not just a technology problem, and that's a whole new podcast. We could, you know, we can see we have great technology. We're going to customers. Are we 100 times? Are we 100% successful? Well, not not so much. Ah, lot of the times there are more

complex things happening at the customer that culture, culture, legacy, uh, n changed other interests that are not necessarily related to the best interests of the company. But you know, it's resistance to change. There's a lot. A lot of that is going now, from from a week ability and opportunity perspective, I would say, and we start touched on this. We started about two years ago. We started on this what we call the out systems. That AI journey on the original vision was, How do we disrupt ourselves? So So So Ai is going to come in and you're not going to be building software anymore. That's the future. So how do we how do we make that future happen instead of being disrupted ourselves by it? So we hired the team. They did a lot of underlying research, and now we have two years of research where we're essentially doing really best and glass stuff. In terms of how do we take a I applied to the problem off 100 X productivity by either guiding, automating

or validating every single piece of work you do on the platform so that you don't have to do any boring work and everything accelerates. And I think this is this is going to be the single most important thing we're going to do in applicability in terms off the product. And it's really going to help. All of these previous companies have talked about adopting expanding the usage of technologies such as our systems in a very, very fast way. Cool. Thank you. Question. Yeah, I think. Yeah, I got 100 if you want. No, I think I think you totally did. Yeah. Eso I know you. I think you also have, like, a couple of questions. You wanna? Yeah, of course. Thanks a lot. Already again. Settle for the all the energy I can feel the real passion and, uh, enthusiasm and everything you say so. But But come very well. Even a resume. Uh, a Zandra mention in intro As a former software developer, that's a fascinating

product for me because I've been struggling to build all those up. But you can click and point to build without system. And I'd love to dig deeper with you into what it means to build a product like that. So maybe to start, do you mind walking us through? What is the product organization? Where How is it organized? How many people were is based. Sure, sure, sure. So So we've, you know, firmly. I think we firmly believe that there is no perfect or chart or no perfect organization. And we are. We try to organize around the more critical outcomes for where we are. Um, from from our product perspective, we have, ah, simply put, we have an engineering organization on the product management organization. The product management organization works as the keep proxy for the market and the customer and were responsible for designing this vision and to really be the representative off the customer in terms of what what gets built. And we were very, very close intent

. And with our engineering organization we have about eso, we have about 20 something product managers. Uh, they they are organized around what we call value areas of product areas that are value for our customers. So we have, for example, product management around. How are customers do data and integrations? Just that problem. How do you do that? Integration requires somebody that really understands the understands everything understands what's the problem space, How people do this in traditional alternatives. How do we make them 100 x More productivity in our systems. What is your vision for this? We have other people that do you x ey in touch points. So how do you build the U. X and you are in a local way? We have people around automation of developers. We have all of all of these different product areas are really, really interesting, Andi and they're they're designed to be really subject matter experts and customer customer proxies in terms off

where we are, where we wanna go in the next three years on then on the on the other side, we have our good friends in engineering great team and what they organize. They typically organized around either outcomes or assets. It depends we're doing meaning, you know, you. Either you own a part of the product or do you want a specific customer outcome? Customer outcome would be. We want the customer to do an integration in less than 10 minutes. So there's a There's a organization around this idea. This North Star Andre self organized around that that idea on and we have about 200 plus engineered at this point in time with the problem with the U. S Group on AI Group Elin, all totaling around 300 people in engineering. Mostly, we used to be a very Lisbon centered organization. So a lot of people in Lisbon we started on the journey of getting more and more people from outside of Lisbon. And now we have

a team in the United States. We have people in in India. We have people in all over Europe as well, both on product management, engineering and and s. Oh, yes. Oh, so that's sort of at the high level of how we are. We are organized to deliver on this product call on, I guess what's also fascinating. And I can relate from what we do as Cain is, you build a product, but for tikis eso not necessary developers. But at the end, you're helping people putting together great application. How do you make sure? So internally, I guess we can talk about a lot of dog footings or use, and you mentioned that before use your own product. Ah, lot. How do you make sure you mentioned it's to group already? How do you make sure still that product engineering state together as one team and be the great product that your customer love at the end of the day. Great, great question. I mean

, we have a numerous techniques and tools to do that. Obviously, from from, ah, customer feedback perspective, we have many mechanisms. We have channels like an advisory council. We have a community online where people post ideas and suggestions every single day. We constantly review what people are doing from a support ticket perspective. We we look at online reviews. We aggregate all of the data. We parse that out when we process it in team themes that allows product managers to really sort of understand where the issues or the typical issues are. At the same time. From a delivery perspective, we try to be as to do not only dog footing, but we have a great community off people that have signed up for early access programs and give us feedback very early on. And we have built in sort of closed loop mechanisms within the product, on also telemetry to allow us to get really good data on what's getting used. Where are people struck

link and and where you know where where we could be way could do better. Are you actually is also great. And they do a lot of research and interviews, both with current and prospective developers or or actually the entire personas. Because you mentioned like we're not. We are for professional developers as well. But we are also for enterprise architect in application managers and CEO's and Caesars and all of those personas the products which is ours. We need to understand how they perceived value. They utilize and interact with our product. So it's Ah, it's a relatively complex sort of stakeholder map on the customer side. Cool. Thanks. And I say after this, meet up a radio your energy conveys for well over a zoom, so I definitely want to be a P m. At the art system. What makes me a great PM at the system? What should I wish was the first person to join your team tomorrow? Great. Great question. And I should say

, I didn't ask if I could say this, but we are actively hiring wearing your your sponsor at product eyes. So you gotta figure, figure that out, right? Yeah. Now, yes. So we we are We are actively hiring. I mean, the key strategic thing at our systems for a product for product manager is that you are you fully understand the problem space in which you're trying to operate more so than being a phenomenal product manager. I will talk about that in a second, but we you really understand the problem space. You're passionate about the problem space. So to give an example, the person that that's our product manager for data integrations We used to have a company literally. It was a CEO of a company on data and integrations. So you know, we got him. And he is now easy essentially running the company that competes with companies that do data integration. So it's the same thing. So you have to be very, very good and

understanding that market, that understanding the needs and the problems space on be ableto then articulate, sort of that product vision and the outcomes that we desire in a competitive fashion articulate that we put a lot of emphasis of good writing, good communication, good internal and external evangelism. So you need to you do need to be a good communicator. You don't have to be an extrovert. You don't have to, you know, go like to be in front of crowds. But you like you need to be passionate about communicating clearly and effectively to multiple audiences, external and internal. That is absolutely critical. Eso I would say two things. It's this idea of being really, really good at a time problem you're trying to solve and at being with customers and understanding that. But in translating that in clear communication, one more thing before I forget. Um, there are many, many things that a good product manager needs to do from a technical perspective. Technical as How

do you actually do product management, the privatization aspect, negotiation, all of those different things, and we came to the conclusion that it's hard. I mean, it's really hard. It's a new discipline a lot of us are figuring out. Do we have organizes, such as you guys really trying to get to the next level? You know, you write, I read. I tried to read as many books as possible as I was ramping up on the job. People do that all the time, but it's still a heart. It still feels like especially for B two B software. It's it's really and discipline that's in its infancy, right we're creating it from scratch. So for 2021 a key initiative we have a route systems and we have at at the product management team is we are going to create a product management academy. And the Product Management academy is designed to really teach at scale what it means to be a B two B platform product manager way we're not happy with any training were found, you know, end to end. So we're gonna build

that. We obviously want to use that as an attraction mechanism, but as a discipline mechanism for our teams when we want to share that with the community as much as possible. So if you want to know more, reach out. You know, we can work together on building the next version of B two b product management. We will. We will reach out. So don't don't don't for sure we will. No, no, no. You guys already. We already have content from you guys slated into the Product Management academy, and I'm sure we will have more engagement opportunities because a lot of it is also giving back to the community, right? You can't do this without giving back to the committee that scale. Yeah, I was pretty awesome. And, uh, but resonate, I love the fact that you're taking this seriously because I think there is. So I've been running a few meeting for the past week, and a lot of people are coming to me with a lot off junior PM challenges. And there's a real challenge for us. As you exactly said to train the next generation of PM and again

disciplines or nobody as a number. Nobody here as a formal training into PM We all got there by luck, I'd say, Uh and so, yeah, that's fantastic to say you to see you're taking that seriously. Have you seen a good success stories with maybe some engineer starting product manager at the end? Yes. Yes, we have. I would say about 50% of our product managers. They do come from engineering backgrounds, but they're they're very They're obsessed about that customer outcome. They're obsessed about their problem. Not so much in, you know, a specific solution. But we we we do see that profile. Um, Azaz aqui profile. I will say that we're not far as far as long as I would like in terms of our diversity journey of actually bringing a cognitively diverse set of people to work on this problem. And this is this is an important

aspect for us. Way believe we believe in this for we're trying to create in the world. So why not do that ourselves, right? So try to create people that don't don't necessarily come from an engineering dot com. So it's not a requirement, but yeah, we see. We see engineers in a technical B two b product, specific parts of the product becoming really, really good product manager. Awesome. It's really very radical. Thanks for opening the book. I think for the people who are with us now and the people who are going to watch back, it's key to it from you first. Maybe. Let's deep dive now. Thio. How do you see the perfect customer off our system? So you started to touch a bit on that? Who is the ideal customer? Is it early stage less stage, Miss stage rapid prototyping like I want to run a new M V P and I should go out our system. What's the sweet spot for you for your disease right now? Great question. I'll tell you what's not a good customer fraud systems

. Two things One is if you can get access to as many engineers as you want top talent in the Valley and you're you're you, you don't you don't have a problem hiring. You don't have any legacy systems. You're you're starting from scratch and you're like that you're not a good customer processes right if your Facebook or if you're Google in the early days or that's not a good customer, Francis, because these people they can attract, they don't have any of the problems that 99% of the other companies have, right the other. The other thing, the other characteristic is If you don't think if you think you move, you know we're moving just fine and we don't need to go any faster and we can keep saying no to our business and we can keep saying no to the to our customers, then you're also not a good customer for all systems. What we see as a great customer for our systems are people companies, actually, fundamentally in all different. One of the interesting things about our systems is it's very broad in terms of the industries but also sort of the company

sides. But if you're going through a significant transformation process where parts of their transformation require that you move faster, require that you deliver it quality that you bring in your business closer to your technology team, even mash them and fuse them together. Andi, if you have concrete ongoing transformation initiatives, and if you have oppressing event, you are a fantastic customer for our system. Because then that's, you know, and a lot of companies are in this position. They have a higher the CEO. They've hired the new CEO or the business is going digital and they have a digital transformation program, which it's sort of a key word. But it's really, really useful, because if companies are starting to think to this, it's a good sort of starting point that they're willing to do change and toe. Look at the reality of how they deliver and to fundamentally change it. So, you know, short answer is, we believe in the world in the future, where every company is going to become a digital and software creator

, and in that future there's really no there's the vast majority of companies will benefit from applied from such as out systems, if not us. Somebody else with the same principles. Yeah, yeah, and I think it's good to be reminded because we tend to live in a bubble where we're surrounded by take all day long and we tend to forget. But I think of it was a good reminder. But there's still a lot of businesses out there which are non digital, and, uh, yeah, completely like our system will help tremendously. I'm taking a question from the chat now because I think it's a align with everything we discussed now. So it's a question from Carlos Rage. Amazing. This right, uh, with asking, Do you have a system of mission in having more citizen developer or just improving the efficiency off developers by a magnitude? So you have that greater mission to empower any citizen around the world to create application quickly. So our

mission is we want to make the entire organization in our customer, ah, 100 times more productive than they are today. When you start to examine that a key portion off, achieving this mission is to be able to bring in people that are either sitting in the business or close to the business closer to the process of creating technology, creating something from scratch, being becoming makers. Now I will say, I don't personally enjoy the term citizen developers. Do you know anybody that self identifies a citizen developer? They're like, Yeah, I am a citizen developer. That's not what people want to dio. The reason you call yourself or the reason I t calls it a citizen developer. This is actually what the analysts call it. It's a sort of an analyst construct, but people don't think of themselves. A citizen developed what they think of. I have a problem. I mean, to fix my problem. I wanna be autonomous, Lets me let me do that. If you're thinking about two orders of magnitude 100 times more productive

, there is no way we're not going to make existing professional developers much faster and really focusing on people that want to be professional. They want to do 100% of their work in building great applications, but at the same time bringing in the business people. Maybe they're collaborating in ideation. Maybe we have So, for example, we launched the tool called experience building experience. Builder is designed for the developer and the business person to sit side by side and to 88 in 30 seconds, 30 minutes, one hour on what the apple is gonna look like. And then the developer takes that gets announce systems application and runs with it. Is this citizen developer? Well, not in the typical exception that the citizen developer is doing all the work by himself, but its citizens developer in the context that they are participating. They're an active participant in the act of creating digital systems with very short feedback loops. In that sense, we're doing both were not for one or for the other. We are to make the organization 100 times faster

and do whatever we have to do to make that happen. Awesome. Thanks. Uh, way, question, way. Have 12. Answer your question. Callous. Thanks for rising it up. That's great. Uh, time flies. It's already 15 minutes wearing. It's always a fascinating out time flies. Uh, I think we could dive into two Rs and I want to let you choose a here. Consider where you feel the most comfortable. Either we go into the ai and how big it can be as an opportunity for your business. Or we can give dive a little bit more into everything we discussed now and especially the competition. What what do you feel is the best? FEMA Thio Comfort is clearly operated. Let's go with competition. All right, all right. So who has your best competitive today? Like, I think we can think about the company like you. I path with helping companies automatic

eyes, walk flow or their existing APs. But how do you see yourself positioning it? It's so interesting because what What? This is a very interesting product. Management question is, Well, how you choose and how you define your competitive set is the dramatically going to change your view of the world, right? And if you look into this vision that I've been sort of on my soapbox here trying to say, you know where about 100 X productivity, what that means we're essentially up against a lot of different forces were essentially against the local space. We have a bunch of companies. We we were one of the originals, I would guess, but we weren't alone. Those companies still exist. Those companies are still thriving and they have a similar value proposition to to us. So we we also encounter them a lot of the times in what you would call pure local place. The other thing that's interesting is we have and significant sort of players and platform players that are now launching

low code offers. And what they're doing is let me give this local thing to try on top of my existing platform. Salesforce is an example so that people can use my existing platform and do things on my platform faster. So that's another example. If you think about this 100 x productivity, then um R p a robots are a critical competitors, right? What we see in reality is that RPS not so much a not so much a competitive but a really good strong compliment because what are P a does is it is fantastic if you don't want to change the underlying systems. If you have, like, three or four systems, I can't touch this. This is like a complete mess. I'm gonna automate this. That's fine the moment you start drinking really about productivity and change and how I need to redesign my system R p is not gonna help you with that. What's gonna help you with that is a highly productive technology. So you can you can do that. You can completely redesigned those systems

, those interfaces, things like that. So Well, in our p a. R. P s case, a lot of the times, what we see is we come into customers. They already have an r p. A. Practice because RPS are awesome at lead time to first value, really showing value very, very quickly. And what we end up doing with our P A is we use our p A as an extension point either to get data or to give data back. So we played very well together. If you think through the customer lens, what is that they're trying to solve? They can actually deploy the two technologies to maximize the outcomes and slowly but surely removing pieces of those RPS and moving them into a more robust local platform. There will always be robots for other things. In these, you know, Fortune 500 company can have 1000 robots for small things, and it's still gonna be It's gonna it's gonna be enough, Bond Finally, you know, we're competing against traditional coding in a way, right? We're competing against people that are building enterprise, great mission critical systems. So

if you're doing that in a way, we're already in the in in in that competition were being brought in as a viable alternative to build home banking systems or building systems. Or it's like crazy. So it's very interesting because we're playing all these. You know, these spaces when we have strengths and weaknesses off course in all of them. But this idea that you can get an entire company operating on one platform to solve all of these different use cases is both fascinating and frightening from a product management perspective, because there are so many avenues for value for customers. But it's it's a hard problem to grass from product management Perspex. But yeah, so that's how we define competition these days. It's not just local, not just no code or Oppa. It's the combination of how companies air digitizing and automating their work. Do you see a play? Maybe I'm not educated enough in the space. You mentioned something super interesting to me, which is hey says force need to have their own platform. Thio bring more business ups

on top of the platform. Do you see a play where artist, um is the white label platform powering salesforce? So I can't comment on that directly. But I will say that it is. I can see you are between product manager. It is a natural. It's a natural go to market strategy to say, Hey, our core competence is to build fantastic, uh, local experiences, if you will your car competences to understand the problem space and CRM or customer records or and, you know, you don't want to go here. We don't want to go there. Maybe there is a great way for us to do this together. Right? Uh, and, uh, and for sure, I mean, a lot of our customers already do that on their own way. Like, I think we learned a lot from customers, right? And a lot of our customers they buy out systems to not have to customize or modify their systems of records. If you have a core e r p. Just leave it as it is, this very small privatization

and then use the platform such as our systems to build anything that's unique and custom. So do that. Otherwise you're gonna be in hell in a few years. Right? So that's already happening organically. I can get play where someone reinvented era on our system and makes a 10 x version of Gerard. So you have a way. Look on that. You know, you know, maybe on on a more personal note don't solve. So what? What do you do apart from your job? How do you take a break from all this responsibility? Wow, that's, uh, um e will be. I will be radically honest. I mean, at this stage in which we wear what we are as a company, I don't get a lot of free time, but that's OK. That is a choice that I've made. I'm responsible for it. I have a lot of fun. I spent most of my free time non out systems

is typically around with my close family. My daughter, my, my, my really close family. I try to spend as much possible time with a zai can and because I'm always teaching jobs, my three time is also on educating me on whatever is next. So my my evenings today nowadays are spending reading about product management on and you know I should go back. I should, you know, just to clarify something we said an hour ago. I am a newbie product manager, but I'm not. And I don't think I myself a za newbie leader. And a lot of what needs to happen is you need to work from first principles. Get the basics right because I have a really good set of product managers. And if you push people to do the right thing here, what's the vision? Let's documented. Let's go to the next level. I don't need to be the best fanatic managing the house, right? I have those already. We need to be the best leader, the best. Make the best team, influence the right way, communicate the right way, and the rest of it is gonna happen. You know, I wanna learn as much as possible, but I don't see myself

as becoming like the fantastic product manager that knows how to do all the nuances of product management that that was not my route to this job. So I bring different things. It's an interesting thought as well. If you're you know, if somebody in the audience is thinking about their career. You don't necessarily me to go to a functional role to get a leadership role into a certain position. You is your business. Roosevelt Sorry, it's just wanted to comment on that. Yeah, it's it's speaking about your your leadership position. Um, one of the questions that that I like to just, you know and feel feel free to share it or not share it. But, um, has a leader. What's Do you have any story off something you did that didn't go has you blend originally? Um, and then you regret it. It's not such a great story that you might want to share either on the product

on on your your product role or previous role. And how and and since you have not been fired from all systems, I think that that's at least didn't have didn't have any critical. It was not a critical mistake, but sometimes you have bean and and maybe the CEO and whoever was managing you at the time was just a supervised with you. But is there any leadership story you wanna you wanna tell us before before you go? Um, I one of the things that I've been coaching myself over the next of the last few years is onto How how do you How do you make things that you know are the right choices but are very, very difficult to execute on because they are emotionally difficult early, early on, our status possible. So you recognize the signals. But you didn't rationalize how I shouldn't do this now and, you know, and whatever. So I have I had a recent situation, uh, where

you mentioned firing. You know, this is always a hard thing where the signs were there for somebody that just wasn't a good fit culturally, and I let it go for too long. It wasn't a critical situation, but but if you let it go for too long, and if you coach the person and the person doesn't respond, and but if you let it go because it's no, this person is so difficult, you're gonna have to let it go. It's very, very hard. What ends up happening is you. You reduce the trust of the network around that person and in yourself and then as very long lasting effects. And I think I took too long on Thio. Move decisively and to, you know, just remove this person from from the business. It was good for the person it was good for. The company was good for the team, and I took too long because I didn't want to go through the difficult conversation. And and I have done, you know, firing people before. It was more natural situations, but this specific I took, you know, it took me six more

months than it should have, and the team suffered. And I think back to that very, very often. As you know, it's your You have failed your your responsibility as a leader. If you have not acted on something that you you really knew, that that was not working right just because you didn't want to go to the difficult conversations. That's my my most recent example. You're also managing a distributed TV in Portugal and in the US, and I guess the other locations right. How is that unfolding right now? Because cultures, you know, like you said in the beginning of this conversation culture is is you know it's eating strategy for breakfast, as they say, and it's it's really one of the hardest points anywhere. So, um, how is it to deal with those culture specifically with American culture? Which is I, I guess, more confrontational, more direct and and quite different from from

European, specifically Portuguese. One. That's a good point. Um, so we before coded we were certainly with something basic. Which waas We have sort of two hubs people in the U. S. People in Portugal on the natural tendency was for the like. The office have been Lisbon to have sort of a viewpoint, and people with the dynamics would play out. And it would be hard to hear from our American colleagues with cove it and going remote and investing ongoing remote written communication, a sink mechanisms less meetings as much as possible. You started hearing more and understanding more and connecting more with our American colleagues and it it really becomes, ah, fantastic capability to sort of mix that American ingenuity, courage, ability to just get things done and not to sort of to see things that scale. Americans see things that scale naturally, and that is something all of us have to learn more. It's like you

have to scale. You can't be you have to be courageous about how to scale. But we are seeing we're seeing a great, great interplay, so I'll give you another example. It's a personal example. We have a new see a new C t o r. New city of Is an American on is my peer and and I love the guy And he comes in is courageous, wants to get things done, wants to move fast, but then also gets the thoughtful, well, sort of approach from Europeans. Respect that as managed teams across time zones. And I think that combination off thoughtfulness family in our sports team connection that we have and that you know, gung go attitude that Americans have is actually fantastically for us. It works quite quite my sleep, and and the feedback I get from them is the same. I mean, a lot of the times our American colleagues said come and say, Look, I have never worked in a company where people are so collaborative and just open and frankly smart

and and it's so I guess it's a lot a lot about how we Europeans work. So it Xena good experience. It's been a really good experience. I should say. All right. So are you familiar with the Pepes Challenge? You remember that? Uh, is it the one where they were? You know, you do like a blind test. Exactly. Pepsi against usually right on band. So the question is, for when a Pepsi challenge Off Out systems versus X way actually did that already like that 10 years ago. We dated 15 years ago, probably when we first spoke to you. I remember doing that in the left first two years when I was in the company, and it was an interesting example. But you're right. I mean, as we go forward, one of the things we're considering is we have to keep ourselves honest. So we're looking for partners that allow that can, with very little perverse incentives, run

these claim or the Buche debunk the thistle idea that we're putting forward of being 100 times more productive. So, yeah, I mean, and, uh, that challenge, I think, would happen against the multitude of different technologies for a multitude of different problems. So we'll be good. Maybe we'll dio Yeah, that's a good That's a good I'm going to go back to our CMO and and tell them Hey, let's do one a month Next. I didn't watch YouTube channel where every month. Ways artist. Ambitious ex. Exactly. Exactly. Like people side by side. A exactly a really blend challenge. You know, e exactly. No, that's a great idea. And I thank you. You are sort of Ah, I can see your you're marking shops are showing here. Yes, absolutely. We'll do that. It's hard to sell the conference, right, Especially

on s o much competition. That's actually one of the things that happened now with over it is this explosion off online events and cost off opportunity of people is time is really the most important asset, right? People When they go toe in person conference, they they hop on a plane, they go to city, and they, you know, they don't compute the two days that they're spending their has wasted time because there's so much in when when you're going to a four hour, six hour online events, those hours, they're coming out off your billable hours or whatever it is. So people compute much, much, much better. Andi, understand the rial opportunity cost. But anyways, I mean, we're super lucky to have you here today. Thank you again for taking the time to be here with us today. CEO about it

Gonçalo Gaiolas - VP Product Outsystems
Gonçalo Gaiolas - VP Product Outsystems
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