Meet the Team: Abay Israel
Abay is BlueConduit’s Director of Product Management. Here’s a quick Q&A with Abay.
Why did you join BlueConduit?
I joined BlueConduit because I was really interested in the mission of the company, and being a father of two young kids, getting the lead out of the water system is one of my highest priorities to keep my kids safe. Additionally, I’ve been interested in how AI and machine learning could improve our world – so tying those two things together made a lot of sense. Finally, the people at BlueConduit were really nice to talk with, and they seemed to have a similar vision and passion that I share and I was really excited to join the team.
What professional experience and expertise do you bring to BlueConduit?
I’m currently serving as the Director of Product Management at BlueConduit, and I come from the University of Michigan where I did a similar role. I helped transition the organization from a traditional “waterfall” management style to the more dynamic “agile” approach of building technology. My passion for connecting people and technology allowed me to bring users closer to the heart of what we were building, resulting in more effective and impactful products. What this means, and especially for BlueConduit, is that I will help us better understand the needs and priorities of our users, translate those into precise technical and functional requirements, and leverage our strategic vision and technical expertise to deliver the right product at the right time.
What does a day in the life of BlueConduit’s Director of Product Management look like?
At the heart of it, my job is to help our team gather and synthesize information to maximize our work. This includes conducting market or user research, analyzing product performance and feasibility, or collaborating with various teams to help refine our requirements. On a day-to-day basis, we do what we can to set the high-level vision for the product – what we’re building and why we’re building it and make sure we have a good feedback loop in place so the customer is always our top priority. Next, we establish an appropriate framework so that all of our stakeholders from the engineering team, data science team, customer success and sales team are aligned around that central vision and we’re working together towards achieving it. Third, our team is an essential communication point, so we ensure that leadership has visibility into the key milestones and risks so that they can make informed strategic decisions.
What work accomplishments are you most proud of and what goals have you prioritized for this year?
In my first two weeks here I was able to see the engineering and data science team work together with product and design in a two hour session to create an MVP of our new product offering – so I’m very happy about that. I’m really looking forward to seeing what our users think about it too! Taking an idea and making it into something tangible allows everyone to move forward in the same direction and get excited about what the future is going to bring.
How do you spend your time outside of work?
Outside of work I love spending time with my wife, our two kids, and our pets. I have also been a mobile and tour DJ for over 20 years and I have a blast performing at weddings, corporate events, and festivals all around the world. This means that I do not have a lot of free time, but if/when I do, I love traveling, trying new food, tinkering with new tech, and all things superheroes.