Meet the team: Louise
For this month’s instalment of our ‘meet the team’ interview series, we caught up with Louise, a Product Manager here at 360 Digital Starters who first joined the company in 2018 as Content Editor, but now helps oversee and coordinate some of our most exciting projects.
Take a look inside Louise’s career journey and the experiences that led her into a Product Management position.
Tell us a little about yourself —what did you do before joining 360 Digital Starters
I’m originally from London and after a four-year degree studying English Literature at University, I really had no direction or clue about what I wanted to do. I did, however, know that I needed to earn money so I applied for every job that I could find and ended up working as an Admin Assistant at a school. I was lucky enough to meet some really great women in the Data Team who recognized my skills and encouraged me to apply for the role of Digital Manager, which included managing many of the school’s digital platforms and social media channels. From there I was able to get a job at a London Charity as a Digital Content Manager and hone my skills even more. I loved writing content, but I was already at this stage leaning toward more project-based tasks, particularly when it came to coordinating and assisting in the design, direction, and development of web-based projects.
What first attracted you to 360 Digital Starters?
One of the many things that attracted me about 360 Digital Starters was how fresh and ambitious it was. It was only a few years old when I applied, with a team fewer than 25 people. There were a lot of big and exciting ideas to get involved in from the very beginning and there was (and still is) real opportunity for growth. I could see areas where my skills could benefit the team and I could also see huge potential for myself to learn from my international colleagues.
And why did you pick Berlin as your new office?
So many reasons! I love to travel and I’ve always quite liked the idea of living in different places around the world. Berlin just made total sense as a destination—it’s got a great start-up scene, welcoming international community, amazing culture, fascinating history, incredible lakes, lots of parks (with lots of dogs), and it’s so well-connected to other countries that organizing little getaways abroad is so much easier.
What was the path that took you from Content Editor to Product Manager?
Creating content has always been a big part of what I do and something I greatly enjoy. I spent a lot of my professional experience writing and editing blog posts, internal comms articles, web-based copy, social media posts, marketing copy, and occasionally creating videos and graphics for external campaigns. But what I really enjoyed was seeing how this content contributed to the bigger picture of a product and learning more about the purpose it serves and the customer pain points it’s trying to solve.
The joy of working at a start-up often means that you get to dip your toes into different projects and, after a short time at 360 DS, I was encouraged to push myself further and help coordinate one of their new projects that would involve working closely with product, tech, content, design, and marketing teams to bring a new app from idea to life.
Since then I’ve had the opportunity to work cross-functionally on many really interesting projects and been able to utilize the company educational budget in order to strengthen my skill-set and move fully into Product Management.
Any tips for people aspiring to shift their career toward a role in product?
Just go for it! The great thing about product management is that it opens up opportunities to work across teams and to learn how their tasks contribute to the bigger picture. In my experience, the best thing you can do is to try your hand at lots of different things, because the likelihood is that you’ll be working with content, design, tech, marketing, and business, so it’s important to build up a better understanding of how each of these teams work. Organization and curiosity are also key—you need to stay on top of your competitors, market trends, and audience needs to ensure that your products are relevant.
And finally, on a more personal note, you mentioned previously that one of the many reasons you moved to Berlin was because you love to travel. Any travel tips for our readers?
One of the best parts about living in Berlin is how well connected you are to other European countries. Italy is my absolute favorite place in the world to visit and since moving to Germany I’ve tried to get over there at least once a year.
It might be a bit of a cliché, but Venice in particular is a highlight and I feel like I should be paid commission from their tourist board for the amount of people I tell to go there….but, seriously, go there! Now!
If that’s not your jam, then I’d also recommend Lake Konstanz in Germany. I think Germany often gets underrated, but it really shouldn’t. I did part of the EuroVelo 15 Cycle route, starting at lake Konstanz and travelling along the River Rhine. It was one of the most beautiful trips I’ve taken. Highly recommend!
Thanks Louise! We’re looking forward to seeing what exciting products you'll be working on (and launching!) this year.