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Navigating Cloud Transition: Cody Hosterman, Sr. Director Product Management at Pure Storage

In our latest episode of the Product Unfiltered podcast, we had the privilege of hosting Cody Hosterman, Senior Director of Product Management at Pure Storage.



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Summary:

Product Unfiltered: Navigating Cloud Transition: Cody Hosterman, Sr. Director Product Management at Pure Storage

Cody shared invaluable insights into his journey, the challenges of transitioning from on-premises infrastructure to the cloud, and the critical importance of focusing on customer needs. Here are some key takeaways from our conversation:


Key Takeaways:


Journey into Product Management:

  • Cody began his career at EMC, focusing on VMware integration with their storage platform. He then transitioned to Pure Storage, where his role broadened to encompass multiple responsibilities.

  • After several years, Cody officially joined the product management team at Pure Storage, taking over the cloud business. This role offered him a chance to dive deep into the public cloud market, business, and technology.


Transitioning to the Cloud:

  • Cody discussed the industry's shift from private to hybrid clouds and the increasing acceptance of multicloud solutions.

  • His career has been marked by a strong customer-centric mindset, driving innovation within Pure Storage.


Challenges in the Cloud Market:

  • Initially, gaining the attention of cloud business decision-makers was challenging since Pure Storage's Cloud Block Store (CBS) product wasn't a default offering from major cloud providers.

  • The focus had to shift from merely showcasing features to emphasizing the business impact, such as cost savings and efficiency through data reduction.


Capital Expenditures vs. Operational Expenditures

  • Cody explained the shift from capital expenditures (capex) to operational expenditures (opex) and the subscription model in the Enterprise and B2B sectors. This model allows continuous improvement and innovation.

  • Understanding how to drive value through the opex model and transitioning customers from capex is crucial.


Balancing Customer Needs and Product Development

  • Cody emphasized the importance of balancing the needs of existing customers with new business demands. Engaging with customers and addressing small usability issues is vital.

  • Reserving a portion of the product roadmap for customer feedback ensures their needs are addressed and not overlooked.


Agility in Product Development

  • Balancing agility and focus in the B2B infrastructure business is challenging, especially when co-developing with larger, less agile partners.

  • Being prepared for unexpected opportunities, like industry mergers, is essential.


Hiring and Networking

  • Cody highlighted the importance of energy, creativity, problem-solving skills, and understanding competition when hiring early career product managers.

  • He shared his experience with LinkedIn, noting its deeper engagement and curated interactions compared to other platforms.


Decision-Making in Product Management

  • The role of product managers in deciding which features to build involves balancing engagement and user value.

  • Utilizing channels like subreddits, LinkedIn, and podcasts can provide valuable insights into customer feedback and sales culture.


Cody stressed the importance of listening to customer feedback and gaining domain expertise as a product manager. This process is crucial for success. Stay tuned for more exciting episodes from Product Unfiltered as we continue to bring you insights from industry leaders.


 


Product Unfiltered is a platform dedicated to fostering insightful conversations with industry experts, thought leaders, and innovators in the realm of product management. Our podcast aims to provide a space for sharing diverse perspectives, best practices, and emerging trends that shape the ever-evolving field of product management. Join us as we delve into the minds of those driving innovation and creating impactful products across industries.

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