Interview with Brian Rakowski

We caught up with Brian Rakowski to ask him a few questions about the APM program.

By Parthi Loganathan, APM 2016, Mountain View

Who are you?
I'm Brian and I currently lead the Product Management team for the Pixel phone in Google’s Hardware team. I was the first APM Marissa [Mayer] hired at Google and now run the APM program.

You were the first APM? What was that like?
Yes; I remember how excited I was when I saw the email about the opportunity. It was sent to the department list for my major at Stanford. I felt so lucky when I finally got the job after seven interviews and I still feel incredibly fortunate today. I definitely didn’t know much about what I was getting into and even less about what it meant to be a PM, but I had some amazing mentors and got to learn from some brilliant people.

What made you want to run the APM program?
The APM program is such a special program, I think most APM alumni would jump at the opportunity to run the program. I was here first, so Marissa asked me when she left Google for Yahoo!. It was an easy decision. Being an APM at Google has unlocked so many doors for me that I never would have even considered possible, and I’m glad to be a part of that experience for others.

Why should someone out of college today consider becoming an APM?
The two best things about the APM program are the other APMs you’ll meet and the opportunity to learn from some of the best Product Managers and engineers in the industry. I’m still in touch with most of the APMs from my class and many others that I’ve worked with over the years. It’s a great way to start your career and set you on a course to have a big impact on the world.

What’s your most embarrassing APM trip story?
Before I started running the program, I joined the trip as an advisor. I had been busily reminding everyone to keep an eye on their belongings and not to lose anything for the past three days, when I walked out of a sushi shop without my backpack containing my phone, passport, and all my cash for the rest of the trip. I had to ask our bus to stop, so I could get out, get a taxi back to Tsukiji, and find the restaurant again. Thankfully, the friendly shop owner had tucked my bag in the back and cheerfully brought it out when I walked in the door.

Interview with Brian Rakowski

We caught up with Brian Rakowski to ask him a few questions about the APM program.

By Parthi Loganathan, APM 2016, Mountain View

Who are you?
I'm Brian and I currently lead the Product Management team for the Pixel phone in Google’s Hardware team. I was the first APM Marissa [Mayer] hired at Google and now run the APM program.

You were the first APM? What was that like?
Yes; I remember how excited I was when I saw the email about the opportunity. It was sent to the department list for my major at Stanford. I felt so lucky when I finally got the job after seven interviews and I still feel incredibly fortunate today. I definitely didn’t know much about what I was getting into and even less about what it meant to be a PM, but I had some amazing mentors and got to learn from some brilliant people.

What made you want to run the APM program?
The APM program is such a special program, I think most APM alumni would jump at the opportunity to run the program. I was here first, so Marissa asked me when she left Google for Yahoo!. It was an easy decision. Being an APM at Google has unlocked so many doors for me that I never would have even considered possible, and I’m glad to be a part of that experience for others.

Why should someone out of college today consider becoming an APM?
The two best things about the APM program are the other APMs you’ll meet and the opportunity to learn from some of the best Product Managers and engineers in the industry. I’m still in touch with most of the APMs from my class and many others that I’ve worked with over the years. It’s a great way to start your career and set you on a course to have a big impact on the world.

What’s your most embarrassing APM trip story?
Before I started running the program, I joined the trip as an advisor. I had been busily reminding everyone to keep an eye on their belongings and not to lose anything for the past three days, when I walked out of a sushi shop without my backpack containing my phone, passport, and all my cash for the rest of the trip. I had to ask our bus to stop, so I could get out, get a taxi back to Tsukiji, and find the restaurant again. Thankfully, the friendly shop owner had tucked my bag in the back and cheerfully brought it out when I walked in the door.