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Being technical or not is not binary
Hugh Olliphant is the Senior Director of Analytics and Data Science at Bill.com, which recently IPO’d and now has a 3.55 Billion Dollar Market Cap. Hugh has been in fintech for over 20 years and has been a multi-time founder. His first startup, G-Money sold to Paypal in the early 2000s and Hugh went on to become a senior product leader at Paypal.
I met Hugh because he was my first boss in the Bay Area and has been a tremendous mentor to me since. In this episode we talk briefly about product and then deep dive into the scope of data science in tech companies today, how to ask the right strategic questions to use data effectively, and how the data team has evolved over the last two decades and how it will change again over the next ten years as data tools begin to replace jobs.
[1:00] How I got my first job in Silicon Valley, Hugh was my first boss!
[6:32] How did you end up at Bill.com?
[7:15] How did you move into the tech industry after an Economics undergraduate and a MBA degree?
[11:27] What makes a great Product Manager? Especially ones that don’t have the technical background?
[14:54] How to build product skills no matter which position you are in
[17:04] What’s the expanse and scope of data science today?
[24:09] Strategic thinking is required in all roles
[25:23] How do you learn to ask the right questions?
[27:45] How has the data industry and data driven decision making evolved over the years?
[30:38] With all this abundance of data tools, what roles have been replaced and what do you think the future of the data department will look like in 5-10 years
[33:37] What it means to uplevel into strategic roles
[35:10] How to stay relevant in the industry amidst so many new data tools
[36:23] - Quick fire rounds: favorite book and best career advice