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Transforming Organizations is Product Management

Frits Habermann, CEO of PicMonkey and former CTO of Lynda.com, shares how he’s led companies through cultural transformations, acquisitions, and new product launches.


Frits has led the transformation of several large and fast-growing companies. He created InDesign at Adobe, then served as CTO of PopCap Games (acquired by Electronic Arts), CTO and Head of Product at Lynda.com (acquired by LinkedIn), and now CEO of PicMonkey, a private equity funded startup.

In each of these roles, Frits transformed the company’s culture and product offering to adapt to changing market conditions. In this episode, he shares exactly what he does within the first 30, 60, and 90 days to get started.

Frits says culture is one of the most important factors to get right. When integrating two companies after an acquisition, he works to find common ground between the two cultures, and ensure that the strengths of the company that was acquired remain intact.

Frits takes these cultural considerations a step further by understanding the personality types within his teams. He discusses the personality models he uses to create high-performing teams.

You’ll learn a lot from this episode about leadership, strategy, and company culture.

Here are the highlights:

  • The first steps Frits takes when beginning a transformation (6:50)
  • The leadership and communication strategies that have most contributed to his success (12:40)
  • Frits shares his approach to transforming his current company, PicMonkey (17:00)
  • Best practices for integrating two different company cultures after an acquisition (25:15)
  • How Frits builds high-performing teams by understanding the personality types of each person (32:20)

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