The Commons Digest (12/22/2022)

The COmmons Insider Newsletter

This week's discussion...

What's "1,000% ROI for sure"?!

Learning at The Commons

Two January Sprints are already sold out. Only a few seats remain for the other Sprints. Apply or secure your spot asap!

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🔥 Hot topic: Relevance of College Accomplishments on Mid-Career Resume

✏️ Career Resource: Tips for PM Resumes

✅ Community Reccos: Customer Data Storage

💭 Thought Starter: Ethical Grey Zone at HealthTechs

💡Brain Teaser: 🐄

🚀 Community Share: Celebrating a community gem

THE COMMONS SPOTLIGHT - "Spoiler… 1,000% ROI for sure"

This year was one of incredible growth for the talented and driven individuals who are members of The Commons. Here is their advice to new community members and future members on how to get the most of this community:

What did you get out of the joining The Commons? Anything unexpected?

  • "The main tangible skills I got were solid SQL experience and the ability to dissect business problems specific to tech. More unexpected was the relationships I built throughout the network – didn’t expect to meet so many great people willing to help!" - Jake, Strategy & Operations alum and now in Analytics & Insights at Instacart
  • "As I started to play a more involved role in FP&A I realized I needed to 1. brush up on the fundamentals and 2. meet others in that function and build a network to lean on. The Commons and the Strategic Finance Sprint ticked both those boxes." - John, Strategic Finance Sprint alum + Co-Founder and COO at Draft
  • "My motivation was to level up my data analytics skill set and network with like minded, early career professionals working in tech. In 6 short weeks, I was able to speak confidently about my intermediate SQL & Tableau skills which was a turning point in my professional development." - Justin, Strategy & Operations Sprint Alum, now BizOps at Velocity Global
  • "I found the move from Finance to Tech extremely tough, partially because I wasn’t really sure what I wanted out of tech (other than just being in tech). By joining The Commons, I was hoping for three things: 1) to really understand tech and specifically roles in tech like Business Operations, Chief of Staff and Product Operations, 2) Be able to connect with motivated, like-minded peers and share/learn experiences and 3) ultimately be able to leverage the skills and network from The Commons to find a job (spoiler… 1,000% ROI for sure)." - Chong, Strategy & Operations Sprint alum and now Head of Operations at
  • "I joined The Commons to get the prerequisite skills to succeed in the tech space and I wanted to network with people already in tech. I definitely learned technical skills that I apply in my role currently on a daily basis. I also gained contextual problem solving and critical thinking skills that were hugely beneficial for my interview process! ... The community aspect of The Commons exceeded my expectations. I didn’t think the community would be so helpful - everyone is so kind and wants to help you with questions, prepare for interviews, or just generally talk about trends in the tech space. It’s a super positive environment and includes individuals I’d be glad to have a coffee/drink with!" - Gurmee, Strategy & Operations Sprint alum + now BizOps for Uber Direct

What should people who are thinking about joining The Commons know about it?

  • "I’d say what you get out of it depends how much you put into it. And considering how much you can put into both a sprint and the community, there’s so much you can get out of it – so don’t hesitate to join and dive right in." -  Jake
  • "Sprints are a game changing (and low cost) way to help you connect your capabilities to exciting opportunities that you probably didn’t even know existed. The 6 weeks are demanding, but at the end of the day you get out what you put into it." - Justin
  • "Do it, just do it. It's so worth it. If you feel like you are in a rut and you can't make moves in your current recruiting situation, it will bridge the gap. It will fill the white space in your knowledge and grow your network. The community is full of supportive people and you'll be very surprised at how well supported you are by the people in the community, regardless of their title, their seniority, or how long they've been working in tech." - Holly, Strategy & Operations Sprint alum and now Operations Manager at Instawork
  • "The Commons has the most tight-knit, helpful and smart community that I’ve ever been involved with. There’s a lot of value of course in the sprints, workshops and the final group project, but just the community alone, with a diverse group of individuals across the world, all in different industries, roles and seniority levels, is extremely powerful and not to be underestimated. Plus, I’ve never had a community where if I wanted to reach out to anyone, they’re always willing to chat with me and share their experiences. ... I can’t tell you how many times I’ve joined programs where people pitched this great product/service, I get all excited, then I feel almost abandoned once I’ve paid. The Commons team is always supportive, always willing to lend a hand and provide advice and are strong advocates for your career journey. That’s hard to find." - Chong

Want to become a member? ⬇️

Join The Waitlist

What’s happening at The Commons

Upcoming events

12 Days of Giveaways

There are only TWO giveaways left - and we just might have saved some of the best for last! Be sure to follow us on LinkedIn for a chance to participate!

All are welcome to participate
Follow us on LinkedIn and find today's post!

Past events

ICYMI we recently hosted these events. Members can find recordings on our platform.

  • Toronto IRL Holiday Happy Hour | Last week, we kicked off the holiday season with community members + friends in Toronto, for an electric mixer run by our awesome mentor, Andrew.
  • Mentor Office Hours | Two of our incredible mentors, Rachel (VP of BizOps at Zelis) and Tiffany (Product Manager at Uber), hosted Office Hours with an AMA-style Q&A, covering everything from breaking into tech to excelling in your role!
  • Weathering Tough Times & Job Search Chat | Tackling a job search or dealing with change at work isn't easy. Tack on the recent headlines and it feels even heavier. That's why we brought together three expert community voices for a chat on weathering tough times at work and in the job search: mentors Shane P. (Head of Ops @ KOHO), Rohan S. (Strategic Ops Manager @ Super) and Saumil S. (Growth & Chief of Staff at SafeGraph).

We're *finally* enrolling new members!

We finally opened up admissions to new members! We'll only remain open for a limited time and seats are dwindling, so act quickly.

  • If you received an acceptance, start your onboarding
  • If you're on the waitlist, stay tuned for an admissions email
  • If you're not yet on the waitlist, apply below

Join the January 2023 Sprints

We're currently reviewing applications for the January 2023 Sprints. The Revenue Growth and Strategic Finance Sprints still have a few seats left. The Strategy & Operations and Product Sprints are sold out (see below for more details on how to get on the waitlist should more seats become available).

We're also now accepting a limited number of Community Only members. If you're interested in joining the community only (instead of participating in a Sprint), you can also apply via the waitlist below.


Explore Sprints // Join the Waitlist


The following January 2023 Sprints are now SOLD OUT. We know there are many of you still eager to join so we're working on adding more capacity. Be sure to join the waitlist (below) if you want in - those on the waitlist will receive front-line access should more seats open up. In the event that more seats don't open up, you'll receive front-line access to join a future cohort.

*Note: if you have a call already scheduled this week or if we've explicitly chatted about holding your seat - don't stress! We've reserved a spot for you - unlock it by submitting payment.

Join the Waitlist

HOT TOPIC - Relevance of University / College Accomplishments on an Early/Mid-Career Resume 📝

'Tis the season to get your career goals in order. If you're diving into a resume update over the holidays, here's how to think about showcasing your college accomplishments. ⬇️

Thanks Shane and Marco for these tips! 💚

General Rule on Resume Content - Keep items that are either...

  1. The best example of a particular skill or attribute you're trying to highlight (rather than littering your resume with tons of parallel examples)
  2. Salient data points in establishing a long-term trend or pattern of behavior

"For example: graduating top of your class should stay on your resume a long time because it speaks to your values, work ethic, etc which is lasting. Doing a pro bono consulting project for a charity, winning a case competition, or doing something innovative at a summer job become less relevant as you continue to accrue stronger examples of skills and capabilities."

Check Out The Full Thread

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Tips for PM Resumes

"Hi Everyone 👋, Can anyone please review and share feedback on my Product Manager resume ... if you have any suggestions that can help me strengthen my profile even more for a PM role, that’ll be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance. 😇

"For all aspiring PMs, below are a few tips from the community. Check out and add to two recent threads here and here! Thanks Charliepat, Wafic, Aya, Pranjal and Saana for the advice!

  • "Entry level PM roles are pretty competitive, so I'd make sure you capitalize on the experience you have by including buzzwords that align with job postings (manage the backlog, wrote user stories, etc)." Tip: check the job description to identify what types of work you'll be focusing on, and incorporate related words into your resume (where you have experience to back them up). Adding the  specific words - say for example, like "prioritization" and "roadmap building" - is better than just alluding to these activities - as you want them to be picked up by an applicant tracking system or easily identified by a recruiter.
  • Be specific so that recruiters understand what skills you deployed (as they'll be thinking about how they're transferrable to their own organization). For example, instead of just mentioning "stakeholder management", give content as to who the key players are and why the effort was critical.
  • Articulate impact and outcomes (eg. more users, more revenue, less churn, reduced onboarding time, etc. - where possible, add metrics). Don't have $ or quantity outcome metrics? Consider timelines - eg. Built and shipped an MVP from 0 to 1 in X weeks.
  • "In terms of securing interviews, I've found that networking has really gone a long way for me! Be sure to make target company lists, follow individuals on the team you're interested in and interact with them - the extra initiative has gone a long way in my experience."

Consider this structure (thanks Wafic - PM at Uber, for this!): "What is your single most prized outcome that you delivered at each of these companies? That should be the first bullet. Second bullet is something strategic you led / influenced. Third can be more operational."

Customer Data Storage

How are you keeping track of customer data? ⬇️

💡Hot Take: "The CRM is supposed to be the source of truth for all customer data. In a lot of cases, the reason the data doesn't live inside of the CRM is people create or store customer data (e.g. notes) outside of the CRM and never take the time to transition it back into it. Or if the original source is from some tracking tool and thus would need data pipelines of some sort to push insights into the CRM."

..."BUT it can be very difficult to integrate a lot of outside data into a CRM without dedicated tech resources figuring out all the APIs."

Here's some additional commentary from the community:

  • A combo of Salesforce, Amplitude and Retool: "We use Salesforce, Amplitude and Retool. Salesforce is the core customer data, Amplitude is for product usage, and Retool is for a mix of some of the usage and customer data. We also use GDrive, Slack, Notion but more so for planning and not customer data." - Kareem
  • Zoho: "My company uses Zoho and it's very clunky to bring in data unless you use a dozen other Zoho products. Ostensibly you should be able to transfer data in with Zapier or some custom integrations they have, but I generally find it to not quite work as intended. I ended up dumping a bunch of related data into Power BI (individual marketing tools, CRM data, financial data, etc.) and building dashboards that give us more insight into customers. I've been looking at Segment as a possible solution, but I haven't used it to say whether or not it actually works well." - Kara

Check out the full post (Shawn added a ton of detail on integrations!) and add your own recommendation here.

Ethical Grey Zones & The Interplay of Ops and Clinical Teams at HealthTechs

Who should hold the power in HealthTechs? The Ops teams or the Health Experts? Check out the podcast and add your thoughts to the thread here.

I bought a cow for $800.

I sold it for $1000.

I bought it again for $1100.

I sold it again for $1300.

How much did I earn?

Check out the answer here.

Celebrating a community gem 🎂 💎

A very happy birthday, indeed. 🎈 This week, our very own Founder & CEO celebrated her birthday and a whole lot of love was shared by the community.

Thanks Kaiz for kicking off this amazing thread. 💚

Interested in more?
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