He was Lane’s first U.S. hire. He dominates the #kudos channel. He has incredible hair. You know who we’re talking about, everybody: it’s our Director of Customer Success, Zach!
Let’s begin. Where did you work prior to joining Lane?
I worked for a company called Amenify, which is similar to Lane, but for residential experience, not commercial. And before that I worked for Zillow – more notable for Americans than Canadians – which is a home-buying and renting platform.
Zillow is extremely addictive. We can thank you for that. What do you like to do outside work?
I love going to the movies. My partner and I have a movie pass where you pay $20 a month and get up to three free movies every week. Discounts and line cutting at the concession stand, too. I love it.
Blockbuster or indie movies?
This pass is mostly for blockbusters, but sometimes they’ll have a theme night like halloween or Jurassic Park. And you can spend the entire evening there.
What’s one thing that people don’t know about you?
I was born in Chicago, but I grew up in a really small ski town of about 1,500 people called Crested Butte, in Colorado. There were 18 people in my class from primary to highschool. One of them was Heidi Montag!
Now that you live in Denver, do you prefer the big city or small town life?
I wanted to go to college in Chicago, but I didn’t know if I wanted to live in a big city again. So I moved to Denver to try it out, and I’ve lived here ever since. Denver is the perfect middle ground between a big city and a small town. It has easy access to almost everything.
How do you like to work? What’s your set-up vibe?
I like having options. Flex working is great because I love having an office to go to. I like to be somewhat metropolitan, somewhere with buzz. I love people-watching at work. It’s a fun distraction that gives me the energy to focus. I also love working while travelling, to be honest. I love a good flight day when you can work from the airport bar or on the plane. I get so much work done.
Let’s talk about Lane. What made you want to join the team?
I love real estate. I’ve worked in mortgages, residential, and even student housing. I also love helping people learn about technology, and helping them see the value in it. Which is where customer success comes in. So Lane felt like the perfect place for me.
When I applied to Lane it was super small, but very cool. There were fewer than 15 people on the team, and I was their first non-Canadian employee! So there was this pioneer mentality attached to the role. After I submitted an application I talked to Kate O’Brien, who was awesome, and then I talked to others. I think I joined because of the people, to be honest. My interest in real estate and customer success was why I applied, but add the glorious people and it turned into an amazing opportunity.
My interest in real estate and customer success was why I applied, but add the glorious people and it turned into an amazing opportunity.
What impact do you want to have at Lane?
I want to see Lane thrive in all the ways it can. In the past few years we’ve been able to realize the potential of Lane with core commercial real estate clients like Brookfield and Colliers – originally as a communications platform, and now as a connector for multiple ecosystems, fusing the entire workplace experience together.
And now that we’re tackling the workplace experience for tenant companies as well (not just commercial real estate firms) we have so much to learn and so much to achieve. What do they want and need? Do employees want to give feedback? Talk to one another? Learn more about company events? Do they need to know what restaurants there are in the area? The options are limitless.
I find it so inspiring to take a physical space and squeeze all these cool things out of it. Using Lane’s platform, we can create something active and engaging for everyone in one space – employees, flex operators and building owners alike – while also helping to drive revenue, retention, and expand our product. All through the flexibility of our technology.
I find it so inspiring to take a physical space and squeeze all these cool things out of it.
What projects have you been working on lately?
I’m literally sitting in a Studio by Tishman Speyer flex space in NYC as we speak. I’m having a lot of conversations with our clients about what they need to be successful, how we can work together at a good pace, and how we can continue to provide them with a great product. I also think a lot about the metrics and milestones we need to have in place to ensure the product life cycle makes sense for our clients. Every client is different in this: some are high touch and require change management support, others require training and continued education. A lot of my work right now is understanding what each client needs and when, and continuously refining our workflow to match it.
What do you like most about Lane’s culture?
The people. I’m a person who needs to talk through my thought process, whether I’m feeling joy and excitement or fear and concern, and people at Lane are incredibly helpful when I need to be heard. I can be who I am, and know that there’s not going to be negative ramifications for sharing my thoughts. If I’m anxious about a meeting, for example, I can talk to Rhea or Corrin, and they’re always so understanding and validating, but also constructive and supportive, reminding me what value I’m bringing to the meeting.
What advice would you give to someone starting out at Lane?
Learn the product. If you know the product, everything else makes sense. The teams make sense, who to talk to makes sense, and most importantly, your impact on the organization will make sense.
Learn the product. If you know the product, everything else makes sense.
Philosophy time. What is the meaning of life?
I think the meaning of life is… don’t worry, and enjoy the ride. Because nobody knows the meaning of life!
What interests you about the future of work?
I think for me the future of work is about passion. People will choose companies based on what they want to put their effort into. I’m reinvigorated after a few weeks in New York meeting the team and my clients. There is a human element we’ve been missing for a year. And that’s driven home for me how special and necessary it is to connect with people on multiple levels. How people experience physical space will increasingly be about a shared experience for a common goal, and similar passions.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I think you get out what you put in. Lane is a unique place because you have the ability to own things you want to make great. You still have to educate yourself and put the work in, but people want you to succeed, so they’ll enable you in the right places. People at Lane want to see you thrive. Which is how all workplaces should be!
Which is why we’re doing what we’re doing.
Boom. Mic drop. Thanks Zach!