Meet Dave Chiang, Our New Chief Product Officer!
It’s been an exciting year at TextNow – we moved our free wireless plan to an upgraded nationwide network and we’re on track to surpass $100 million in revenue for the first time. And we have ambitious plans to go even bigger in the years ahead. To do that, we need to keep growing our team and our product offering. We’re thrilled to announce that we’ve found just the person to help us get there. Join us in welcoming our new Chief Product Officer, Dave Chiang!
Dave has more than 20 years of experience in the tech industry, developing and launching new products, features, and solutions. He's worked at some of the biggest companies in the world, like Walmart, Facebook, CBS, and eBay.
We sat down for a Q&A with the newest member of TextNow’s senior leadership team to learn more about why he joined the team and what he has planned for the future!
Hi, Dave! Let’s start at the beginning – what will you be overseeing as TextNow’s Chief Product Officer?
TextNow has been incredibly successful over the last 10 years. I think at this stage, it’s important to create synergies as we develop and launch new products and features, and to have collaboration and alignment all the way from ideation to engineering to deployment.
I’m going to be overseeing our product, technology, and analytics teams. Within product, that includes product marketing and program management. For engineering, that includes our core team’s focus around calling, messaging, and wireless, devops and SRE, and our platform team. Within analytics, I’ll be overseeing data science, data engineering, and business analytics. These teams really drive our product-driven solution at TextNow, and I’m excited to help scale the team and drive hockey-stick growth.
Bringing these teams under one umbrella allows us to share insights more easily across functions. That will help us scale the product and the platform. It creates a virtuous cycle of ideas that will accelerate growth and attract new customer segments to TextNow.
Why did you decide to join TextNow?
TextNow is one of the best kept secrets in tech. It’s such a great product that’s ready for the mainstream, and I’m excited to help take it there.
I love the company mission and vision of democratizing phone service and giving everyone access to reliable calling, texting, and more. I think the pandemic really showed the importance of access to communication, and TextNow delivers that to people without barriers like price.
I’m really excited to continue this mission with Derek and the whole team, and to bring our service to the next level with new and exciting products and features for our customers.
How would you describe your leadership philosophy?
My leadership philosophy has evolved over the last 20+ years as I’m continually learning. I gravitate towards the servant leadership model. I want to encourage openness, trust, and unselfishness among our team to help us deliver solutions for our new and existing customers. We need to really understand who our customers are and how our products can meet their needs.
It’s difficult to do that with one person at the top directing everything. I want to empower our teams to build straight lines to our customers, deliver new products and features, and create value on their behalf.
My superpower is removing barriers and pain points for my team and enabling them to deliver for our customers at scale.
What opportunities are you excited about when it comes to TextNow’s product and service?
There’s a fantastic team that’s built a really great product, platform, and infrastructure today.
I think there is always incremental value to be found in improving infrastructure and paying down tech debt. But I’m really excited about some of the features that we can deliver to attract new customers and give customers what they’re looking for - especially on the wireless side - while building out the platform to perform at scale.
You’ve led teams at some of the world’s most recognizable companies. What are the most important things you’ve learned in your career?
There’s a couple of important things that I think I can bring to the team. Number one is clarity, whether that’s driving a plan, understanding the roadmap and milestones we’re working towards, or building alignment within our organization. Ambiguity and uncertainty can lead to a lot of churn within companies, and I’m hoping that we can avoid that by providing clarity.
Secondly, there’s a great opportunity to disrupt the telecom industry. I know this because our customers are asking us to help them do it. I’ve seen products scale from 10 million in revenue to 100 million to 500 million to get to a billion, and I truly believe we can do that. I bring an understanding of what it takes to get there for a product-driven organization.
Finally, I’ve learned how important culture is. TextNow already has a strong culture, and I hope to contribute to that. I also hope to help it evolve post-pandemic in an environment where personal and professional alignment is more important than ever.