What to do next?

As some of you figured out from my post the other day, I am no longer at AOL Search.

I’ve spent the week thinking about what to do next. I’ve heard from many friends and colleagues about various opportunities, but the big question is “What do I want to do?”

Here’s what I’ve come up with so far. What else should I consider?

  • I want to launch products quickly and get them in front of consumers. I want to be in an environment where I can get things out the door quickly. The best market research comes from having real customers use and respond to live, working products. If you can execute quickly, you can smooth the rough edges based on real feedback instead of that of 8 people who are there for $75 and a slice of pizza.
  • I want to do something big. Several of the products that I was working on at AOL had the potential to radically transform the way people use the Web. I want to do something on the scale of what flickr has done to photo sharing. It could be changing the way people use their mobile phones, how they watch videos or how they drive.
  • I want to be around intelligent, creative people. They give me energy and ideas and we make each other more productive. Of course, they need to be in an environment that rewards intelligence and creativity.
  • I want to be at a company that truly embraces Web 2.0. In addition to my blog, I frequently comment on other sites. To the extent that I can speak freely on my blog and elsewhere, it can be a valuable asset to the company. Not so much if I’m a corporate mouthpiece.

If you’re doing something along these lines, and feel that I can contribute, please drop me a line.

Note: This is my wishlist for what I want to do next and is not meant to be a reflection on any of my previous employers.


About Rakesh Agrawal

Rakesh Agrawal is Senior Director of product at Amazon (Audible). Previously, he launched local and mobile products for Microsoft and AOL. He tweets at @rakeshlobster.
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1 Response to What to do next?

  1. chris2001 says:

    Look for a company that has a healthy tradition of involving scientific methods in decision-making processes – or, better, their own Research department and acknowledged scientists. It´s the best protection against being made too dependent of anybody´s tastes – be it the pizza eaters, be it the customers, be it ones´ own taste – or the fashions of the day.

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