Kaustuv Prakash

Career Milestones

I feel a lot of innovation happens at the intersection of two very different and unrelated concepts. When I was at Hike, we built an Avatar product to super-charge ‘expressions’ using ML. Beyond the usual collaboration amongst Product, Design, Tech, and Marketing teams, there was a massive involvement of the Arts and the ML team to find a fine balance between aspiration and resemblance in virtual avatars. This was a very unique product and a great learning experience.

Organization and You

One of the most exciting parts of being at Airmeet is that it is in a category that’s very nascent. Being one of the early players, we are defining how P2P interactions in virtual events would shape up. There’s still a lot to be done to productize high-touch interactions, but Airmeet has set a good benchmark. On top of this, most of our customers give a lot of positive feedback (on emails, calls & social media) which pumps up the team daily.

Personally, I love to be associated with unique products that have a lot of headroom for innovation, and Airmeet gives that space to PMs.

My day typically has four swim lanes:

  • Daily scheduled meetings with immediate team members
  • Ad hoc catch-ups to unblock my team or other teams
  • A few weekly catch-ups like cross-functional planning, creative huddle with design or product team, 1-1 catch-ups, interviews, customer calls, etc.
  • Two blocks of DND in the calendar every day for my own deep work (planning, creative thinking, research, etc.)

Core Competencies

I think having a deep understanding of the target user persona and their top pain points is critical and above anything else. If a PM gets this right, then other things can be handled.

I try to focus on this part more than other skills and continue to learn from others to improve further.

Go to food for thought

I rely on Twitter for bite-sized learning and follow some global product leaders, founders, and VCs (list is huge) who regularly share their thoughts and opinion. When it comes to longer formats like blogs and newsletters, I like the content published by Andreessen Horowitz and Lenny Rachitsky.

Favorite Products

  • Google Maps and its integration with Spotify - Google Maps has always been a brilliant product. It has recently launched an easy way to control music while driving. It shows the playback controls from Spotify in the active navigation mode within maps. That was a delightful feature for me as I don’t need to put the app in the background while driving and then select songs.
  • Go Pro Camera - It is a sports action camera which solves a niche problem and is the best in the industry. The camera is small, rugged, and easy to use even in extreme movements like surfing, sky-diving, or cycling. The picture and the video output is very steady and that too in 4K HD quality.


Inspiration List

I particularly like Andrew Chen’s posts and the way he connects the dots across user behavior, product ideas, and investors’ perspective.

I also like Ankur Warikoo’s structured thought process. His content goes beyond product management.

I have been fortunate to be connected to people like Lalit Mangal (Co-founder of Airmeet) and Ashwani Jain (currently Head of International Business at Airmeet), who have been guiding me for years to improve my learning curve and take the right career decisions.

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