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A Day In the Life of a Business Development Manager: Tiffany Lien

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My mornings set the tone and kick start my day, so it’s really important to me to have my routine. I believe it is one of the best ways to set myself up for success.

5:00am - Wake up. Like Scott, I like to make my bed. It’s the first task I complete, and it puts me in the zone to get things done. I get ready for the gym and pack my gym bag (double checking I don’t forget pants). If I’m working out with Julia, our email marketing manager, I’ll read or answer emails before we carpool down from San Francisco to do some Tabata.

7:30am - I like to jump in the steam room after our workout and meditate to clear my head (or at least try to). This is followed by a cold shower. There are a number of benefits to taking cold showers. I figure it will make me shower faster given this drought we’re in.

9:00am - Arrive at the office. By then, I’m starving. I make a big breakfast; the kitchen becomes my best friend for the next 15 minutes. Oh, and it always includes Pirate’s Booty, aka breakfast dessert.

9:45am - I hike up to the sixth floor where the rest of the Business Development (BD) team lives and start planning my day. We kick the day off with scrum, where we each spend no more than 2 minutes each talking about what we accomplished yesterday, what we’re going to focus on today, and if we have any blockers that are preventing us from finishing our tasks. This keeps us all accountable, helps us stay in the loop on what everyone else is working on, and lets us know if there are areas where we can collaborate and remove dependencies.

10:30am - I have a couple calls this morning. One company is interested in using an API to help with its real estate business. We don’t have the right one now, but we discuss the pain points in their process to understand what an ideal solution would look like. We’ve been getting a lot of these requests recently…seems like it could be a good opportunity to pursue. I ping Geoff, our court data guru. I learn about the data sources we could provide to specific types of customers and ways in which we can go about providing a scalable solution for these customers.

12:00pm - At lunchtime, Jake, Matt, and I present a brownbag to teach the Inflection family how to use Slack. We share not only the features and functionalities this communication tool has to offer, but also how we use it at Inflection. Really excited for us to take our communication game up a notch!

1:00pm - After lunch, I grab a vanilla espresso and meet with the Trust & Safety API team, which includes a product manager and data engineers. This is one of our newest products, so we make sure the roadmap is aligned with our clients’ needs. We sync up on the progress on some of the improvements we’re making to the product and the deliverables needed to return to one of our clients.

2:00pm - I get a Slack notification from Tiffany F., our director of product, who wants to talk about the latest updates to our Affiliate Resource Center. Affiliates help drive traffic to our sites, and we’ve provided an internal application to help them market our products. T1 and I (I’m T2) brainstorm ideas for how we can continue to make this as meaningful and useful to our affiliate partners.

3:00pm - There’s a deal in the pipeline, and we just got redlines from them. I read through the contract and the changes they’ve made, and I schedule time with our contract lawyer to address edits that were made to the business terms. Once the contract gets signed we can hand off the relationship to one of our partner managers to help with implementation.

4:00pm - I have a call with another potential partner tomorrow, so I draft a deck together and get feedback on it before shooting it over to the design team, who always makes EVERYTHING look so much better. The deck provides an overview of who we are, what we do, why we do it, and how we can work together with this particular partner and provide mutually aligned incentives.

5:15pm - Today, we happen to have a happy hour at a winery down the street, so I head over to join the team. There were some new hires I didn’t get to formally meet yet, so I introduce myself over a glass of local Syrah.

7:00pm - Afterward, I meet up with a good friend who I studied abroad with on Semester at Sea. We find a cool spot to eat in the city: Hog & Rocks, an eatery specializing in ham and oysters.

9:00pm - I get home and take another look at email before calling it a night. If a partner or client needs something urgently, I’ll address their concerns. It’s important to us that our partners and clients know we are always listening and supporting them.

10:00pm - Before I head to bed, I look at the week ahead and see if there’s anything I need to prep for, both personally and professionally. My day-to-day in the BD world varies depending on deal flow and internal priorities, so I’ll reference our current sprint to help me prioritize. On a personal note, I’m going bioluminescent kayaking with a few friends on Friday and heading to a wedding the following weekend. Time to hit up Amazon Prime for anything I might need.

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