Always wondered how someone becomes a product manager or the path it takes to get there? At HubSpot, our Associate Product Manager (APM) program is focused on building HubSpot’s next generation of product leaders. It’s designed for early career professionals who are interested in product management, whether or not they have experience as a Product Manager (PM), or have worked in the tech industry before. This programs is offered as a spring co-op, summer internship, and fall co-op. We’re always looking for the next group of aspiring product professionals to join our team, so if this sounds like a fit for you, check out our job postings on our career website.
We asked a few of our current APM interns to share their experience. Here’s what they had to say:
Can you tell us about your background and how you heard about the HubSpot APM program?
Anika Tasnim: I am currently going into my last quarter as a Business Information Management major at University of California Irvine. My past internships have been in product marketing and product development, and this is my first time in a product management role. I have a ton of on-campus involvement through student government (Concert Commission head) and through starting my own academic equity research group. All of these roles have uniquely sparked my interest in product management as a future career route. I first heard about HubSpot while searching for resources for career development in marketing and discovered HubSpot Academy! When it came time to find an internship for the Summer, HubSpot’s APM internship program caught my interest because of how much HubSpot was invested in their company culture and how much the company emphasized prioritizing solving for the customer at the top of everything they did.
AJ Falak: I am currently going into my senior year at University of California San Diego as a data science major (transferred from University of California, Riverside where I was a Computer Science and business major). I’ve had two PM internships in the past, one as a PM intern at athenahealth, the other as a Technical PM intern at a startup called Wear. Before these positions, I started two of my own companies to try and gain experience in product management. I heard about the HubSpot APM internship when I was applying for jobs. I was looking at Glassdoor for places with the best company culture and tried to find PM openings at these companies. I saw HubSpot’s listing for the APM internship and the rest is history!
Amneh Alsuqi: I’m a Computer Science and Business Administration major at the University of California, Riverside. Before HubSpot, I worked as a Data Analyst and Production Admin at an aerospace manufacturing company. I heard about the HubSpot APM program through my University’s job board, Handshake, where I was able to learn more about the company and its culture, which encouraged me to apply!
What is your work preference, @remote, @flex, or @in-office, and how do you stay connected with your team?
Anika: One of the greatest parts about working at HubSpot is the flexibility to work in the setting you feel most comfortable. Because my home state is so far away from HQ, I opted for the WFH (@remote) model. Visiting the office during intern week was amazing and if I lived closer to the office, I would prefer to be a flex employee. I have still been able to stay connected to my team through regular sprints, tetrad meetings, 1:1s, and monthly team activities.
AJ: Although I am working @remote right now, I would prefer @flex. I like the idea of working from home but still having the flexibility to go to the office whenever I want. I stay connected to my team through weekly ‘catch-up’ meetings. In these meetings, we catch up on our lives at home and rarely discuss anything work related.
Amneh: I prefer to work @in-office! I stay connected with my team through our weekly “wind down” where we talk about life outside of work and our weekly 1:1s where we discuss current projects. Some advantages of working in-office include regularly grabbing lunch with my team and developing connections with fellow HubSpotters!
Do you have a mentor? What does mentorship look like in HubSpot’s product org?
Anika: Yes, the mentorship program at HubSpot is extremely valuable and everyone should take advantage of it. I have been able to receive a lot of resources in areas of research planning and synthesis from my mentor which has helped me tremendously on my project for the summer. My mentor is a PM on a separate team and I appreciate that I can have another outside perspective for feedback on my project and learn about Product from.
AJ: Yes, I am a huge fan of the mentorship program here at Hubspot. I have weekly meetings with my mentor where I talk about not only how to excel in my internship and grow as a PM, but have general conversations where I learn a lot about life.
Amneh: Mentorship at HubSpot has helped me develop my product, market, and customer knowledge. I meet with my mentor once a week where I can seek guidance on ongoing projects and gain an outside perspective of the space I work in. For me, mentorship at HubSpot extends beyond your mentor: it includes your manager, your team, and people outside of your group that you can have meaningful discussions with.
Tell us your favorite part about your experience so far?
Anika: I have two favorite experiences! One of my favorite experiences so far has been working from HQ and meeting HubSpotters in person. I loved getting to learn about the cool projects the other interns have been working on and the challenges/areas of opportunities they have been faced with during their projects. My second favorite experience is that I got to be on a team of individuals from different regions on my team (One time services). I like that I get to work with HubSpotters outside of the U.S. with ease because it really shows that HubSpot has built a successful remote work model and has invested in a strong company culture that creates an environment of support for one another.
AJ: My favorite part of my internship has definitely been intern day. I loved meeting all the interns and establishing a face to face connection with them. It was also a really cool experience to work in the HubSpot office, as I never got the chance to since I was working remotely.
Amneh: My favorite part about my experience occurs every Thursday when I play board games in the beer garden with fellow HubSpotters. Beyond making friends (and perhaps enemies!) through playing games, I can truly get a sense of HubSpot’s culture through making connections with new people and gaining insight into the work they do on their team. Thursdays in the beer garden embody the community that HubSpot fosters and I am glad to be part of it during my internship.
What’s something that has surprised you so far during your time at HubSpot?
Anika: I was surprised that my team treated me like a full-time employee and gave so much autonomy over my project while providing helpful spaces for collaboration and feedback. It is rare to be working on something new and be in a new environment and not feel overwhelmed like I have in the past. This speaks to the work environment that HubSpot has created so intentionally. HubSpot’s open door policy was also apparent in a remote setting as well. I have been able to reach out and make connections with anyone at the company through slack and there are not a lot of barriers/boundaries in order for me to do so.
A lot of companies share that they have a strong company culture, but HubSpot has been very intentional about the steps they take to make sure it actually comes into fruition for the people that work here.
AJ: I never expected the company to be so transparent, especially with interns. I have access to everything that all the full-time employees have. Not only that, but I can also review the board of directors notes, which is something that I have never seen at other companies. Moreover, I am treated like a full-time employee here. The work I have been given is not busywork, but rather an impactful project that’s affecting tens of thousands of HubSpot users.
Amneh: You probably hear this often (because it’s true), but at HubSpot, you aren’t “just an intern”, you’re treated as a full-time employee. Working with my team, I’ve always felt that my opinions are welcomed and my work is valued. I have the autonomy to work on my projects and achieve my set goals while being comfortable in seeking guidance along the way. While this surprised me early on, I’ve come to understand that HubSpot truly lives by its culture code in creating a company its employees love.
What tips can you share for future candidates to be successful during the interview process?
Anika: HubSpot was one of the only companies I interviewed with where the conversation wasn’t so strict and formal. I would tell future candidates to bring their full self to these interviews - ask questions, share fun facts, make a connection with your interviewer. I would tell them to not be stressed about giving answers that they think their interviewer wants to hear, but rather ones that reflect on their passions and show opportunities for future growth if given an offer at HubSpot.
AJ: The main tips I would share is really listen to what the recruiters are telling you and ask them questions. I owe a lot of my success in the interview process to my recruiter. Not only was she extremely clear and detailed about the entire interview process, she would answer any question I had very quickly. This made preparing for the interviews a lot easier and ended up helping me land this internship.
Amneh: I’m a believer in having the right mindset to have a successful interview. It’s important to do your research and prepare questions- and the recruiters do a fantastic job in guiding you! But to do your best, you need to value what you have to offer. HubSpot doesn’t just want a culture fit, they also want a culture add. Being authentic in your responses and having done the groundwork will hopefully set you up for success!
What are you looking forward to doing next with your newfound product skills?
Anika: I am looking forward to taking on a mentorship role for younger students who are interested in product management and help provide them with the resources to be successful in that process. I am also hoping to land a full time APM role post graduation and continue to work on projects I am passionate about, hopefully with HubSpot!
AJ: I’m looking forward to spearheading more projects, hopefully still here at HubSpot, with my new product skills.
Amneh: I’m looking forward to building off my newfound product skills in leading future projects and bringing value to the customer!