top of page

Where the most impressive women
creating change in the world get the spotlight.

leading visibly logo
Anchor 1

How Uncertainty Led Barbara Janczer From Co-Founding to Championing Customer Experiences

Barbara Janczer’s headshot

Barbara Janczer’s career has been defined by fearlessly embracing change and a dedication to improving user experiences in tech.

Barbara’s journey showcases the power of adaptability and passion in navigating technology’s ever-shifting landscape. Transitioning from a co-founder to a champion of customer experiences highlights her knack for bridging the gap between tech and its users to craft impactful solutions. Thriving in uncertainty, Barbara is an advocate for flexible career trajectories. She believes in the non-linear nature of life’s journey, emphasizing the value of diverse experiences for personal growth. 

We asked Barbara about how her career background shaped her current position, her growth as a leader, and the advice she’d offer to those starting on a similar journey.

Tell us about your career background. How has it led you to where you are today?

My career journey has taken me on an incredible path. I made a bold move by relocating to Silicon Valley to learn from the best in the tech industry. Following my co-founding experience during my master’s and my initial immersion in the startup ecosystem, I transitioned into the role of a product manager at a big data company. Recently, I seized the opportunity to lead the company’s global customer advisory board. I build scalable product feedback programs with a fantastic team, enabling customers to impact the development process directly. It's a fulfilling role that allows me to bridge the gap between technology and its users. I couldn't be happier with where I am today.

What is the most rewarding part about your current role?

Closely working with customers. I have a genuine passion for collaborating with them, gaining insights into their product needs and challenges, and finding ways to enhance their experience. Witnessing the transformation of customer suggestions into tangible product improvements is incredibly fulfilling.

What leadership skills are you most proud of having honed?

I'm particularly proud of my growth in strategic vision and decision making. I have been fortunate to completely reimagine many projects and programs, often guided by continuous customer and internal stakeholder feedback. Witnessing a vision become a reality through strategic decision making and iterative improvement is immensely satisfying.

I value a combination of adaptability, a collaborative spirit, and a passion for learning. Given the dynamic nature of the tech industry, the ability to adapt to evolving challenges and work effectively in a team environment is crucial.

How have you grown as a leader since you started your current role?

My increased collaboration with executives and VP-level individuals at large companies. This transition has demanded an entirely different skill set and communication approach. It's been a vital learning process for me. It requires a deeper understanding of strategic thinking, clear and concise communication, and the ability to align with objectives and priorities. As I've navigated this new terrain, I've honed my ability to collaborate effectively with senior leaders, gaining insights into their vision and expectations. 

Barbara Janczer sitting in front of a camera

Which books, podcasts, educational programs, or other resources have been most helpful to you?

Cracking the PM Interview by Gayle Laakmann McDowell and Jackie Bavaro. This book is a fantastic resource for early career individuals seeking a product management role. It provides valuable insights and guidance on how to excel in PM interviews.

Utilizing platforms like Exponent can be a game-changer for interview preparation. It offers real-life examples and scenarios to help candidates sharpen their skills and perform exceptionally well in interviews.

Listening to product management podcasts, such as Masters of Scale by Reid Hoffman or The Product Experience by Mind the Product, can offer valuable insights and advice from experts in the field.

What do you look for when hiring someone on your team?

When building any team, the foremost quality I seek in potential team members is a proactive mindset. I have a deep appreciation for working alongside self-starters and individuals who exhibit a strong go-getter attitude. Those are traits I identify with personally. Initiative, to me, represents the driving force behind innovation and progress.

In addition to initiation, I value a combination of adaptability, a collaborative spirit, and a passion for learning. Given the dynamic nature of the tech industry, the ability to adapt to evolving challenges and work effectively in a team environment is crucial. Furthermore, a thirst for knowledge and a commitment to staying up-to-date with industry trends are highly valuable.

What advice would you give someone starting out on the journey you’re on?

Embrace the uncertainty and be open to the unexpected. It's perfectly okay not to have a rigid career plan. Life often takes us on non-linear paths, and it's important to understand that this can be a source of growth and opportunity.

Find work that genuinely piques your interest, as passion and enthusiasm are powerful drivers for success. Remember that it's acceptable for your career trajectory to evolve over time, reflecting the different seasons of your life. Embrace change and adapt to the industry, job, or direction that suits your current needs and aspirations. Successful individuals often have diverse and ever-evolving careers. Don't be afraid to explore new avenues and redefine your path as needed. In doing so, you'll discover new opportunities and personal growth that can lead to a fulfilling and dynamic career.

Want to learn more about

Dreamers & Doers membership?

Here's how our PR Hype Machine™ and award-winning community can amplify you.

bottom of page