Published: Oct 20, 2021
Time to read: 5mins
Category: Insights

PeopleFluent's Bright Lights: Meet Jim Johnson, Product Manager

To kick off our new employee spotlight series, where we introduce you to key PeopleFluent team members, we chatted with Jim Johnson, Product Manager for PeopleFluent Learning. Jim’s been with us since September 2019 and when he’s not busy working on the LMS, can be found studying for his graduate’s degree, watching any Marvel series, or golfing. Busy guy!

This is an image of Jim Johnson, Product Manager at PeopleFluent

Hi Jim! What’s your role at PeopleFluent?

I’m a Product Manager supporting the PeopleFluent Learning team. I help refine the requirements for our developers as they work to add and enhance features. I also help guide and execute the overall product strategy (under the direction of company leaders) as well as the prioritization of work.

Before PeopleFluent, what did you do for work?

For a decade, I worked in Florida politics before returning to my interest in computers. I worked as a project manager for a friend's software consulting company. After that, I shifted to the human capital management and eLearning spaces working for a NetDimensions partner in Tampa, Florida with a company named Intelladon (later acquired by Tribridge, which was then acquired for DXC Technology). In 2018, the NetDimensions LMS became PeopleFluent Learning. In September 2019, I moved to Raleigh to work for PeopleFluent, completing an interesting career circle.

This is a quote: "Since relocating to Raleigh from Florida, Jim has demonstrated his expertise with his product and has become a trusted authority by both internal and external customers. He has a real growth mindset and it's been great working together to expand his skills and knowledge in product management." -Tom Sykes, Direct of Product Management at PeopleFluent

What are you doing when you’re not at your desk?

Exploring Raleigh with my girlfriend Ashley and our two mini schnauzers, Thor and Loki. I’m also an avid golfer and I participate in a Durham golf league. At one point, I was involved in community theater and I like to consider myself an amateur thespian.

On the weekends, I’m usually watching college football, regardless of the team. Although, I am partial to the University of South Florida, NCSU, and Michigan State (my father’s alma mater).

I’m currently enrolled in the North Carolina State University’s Graduate Program, studying to obtain a Technological Entrepreneurship Commercialization by spring 2023. A big aim of the degree is to teach skills that help an individual evaluate and identify the marketability of tech. I’m already finding ways to apply these skills in my current role, too.

What skills are needed to be successful in your role?

The biggest one is flexibility and understanding that roadmaps adjust. Some others include:

  • Being forward-thinking
  • The ability to handle multiple tasks or projects at the same time
  • Knowledge of the L&D landscape, eLearning, and how organizations use learning products
  • Understanding the agile software development lifecycle
  • Technical understanding of how software and products work

How would you describe your team dynamic?

I don’t really work on a designated team but I regularly work with company leadership, product support, customer success, and engineering teams. We have a global footprint (there are people in the U.S., Asia, and EMEA) so I work with a diverse group of people every day.

What’s your favorite work perk?

I really enjoy the flexibility of working from home, which I was doing even before the pandemic.

What’s your favorite aspect of your job?

Never the same thing twice. My role doesn’t fall into a rut or routine, which presents new and different challenges but prevents boredom. I enjoy being challenged and meeting or exceeding those challenges.

I really feel like I’ve found my fit in this role—and in the eLearning industry.

This is a quote: "I'm the biggest champion for what PeopleFluent Learning can do. I'm continually excited about the product's potential and where the team and I can take it from a UX/UI standpoint. When you compare our learning solutions with competitor products, the LMS stands up to them, thanks to its significant capabilities."

Favorite movies or shows that got you through the pandemic?

I really like audiobooks, and I listened to them a lot pre-pandemic, during office commutes. I’m a big fan of streaming platforms and I’m always looking for new material. When I’m working, I’ll sometimes play shows I’ve already seen—for the background noise.

I recently finished all the Star Trek series and I’ve moved on to watching movies from the 80s, like the 1984 Dune movie. Ted Lasso on AppleTV is a must-watch! I also finished Schitt’s Creek, The Mandalorian, WandaVision, Loki, as well as The Falcon & Winter Soldier. If you couldn’t tell, I’m a big Marvel fan.

We talked earlier about which skills you’re currently building. What do you want to develop in the future?

I’d like to brush up on engineering programming to assist the development teams when they’re making enhancements or adding new features. I’m also learning to apply product management frameworks in addition to the methodology I’ve been studying in the NCSU program.

What product have you been most proud of/excited about working on?

I’m the biggest champion for what PeopleFluent Learning can do. I’m continually excited about the product’s potential and where the team and I can take it from a UX/UI standpoint. When you compare our learning solutions with competitor products, the LMS stands up to them, thanks to its significant capabilities.

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