Product Management Consultant Christina Kelley Weiss on empowering business development
Describe Your business in a few words:
I’m a product management consultant & interim product executive for startups with ten years of experience in product management, software development, and digital health. I work with early- and mid-stage startups to help them grow & optimize their strategy, product team, and development processes.
What was your background prior to starting your own business?
I have worked in product management and software development for ten years at many startups of various sizes in the US and EU. My passion has always been for health tech and femtech, and I held CPO roles at multiple startups in those fields.
Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
To be honest, I never thought I wanted to be an entrepreneur! But that’s why I love the business I’ve started now: as a consultant, I don’t have to be in charge of coming up with my own cool product idea… but I can use my skills & experience to help other entrepreneurs grow and scale their visions.
Take us back to when you first launched your business, what was your marketing strategy to get the word out and did it go as planned?
Most of my clients have come in via word of mouth, which means my focus has been on growing my network and meeting as many startup leaders and potential clients as possible. Since I started my business during covid, that’s meant a lot of virtual networking, which can be exhausting but is also exciting and has allowed me to work with clients from all over the world.
What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?
As someone who suffers from imposter syndrome and has never been good at salary negotiations, I’m most proud of the first big contract I closed. Beforehand, I waffled considerably on how much I should charge because it felt like “too much,” but ultimately, I stuck with it, and the client was fine with the project price! Knowing my worth and sticking with it was (and still is) the thing I am most proud of.
Do you believe in work/life balance? What are some of your best tips?
Yes! As an American living in Austria, it’s been so eye-opening to see what “work/life balance” looks like in two countries with such different philosophies on work. My best tip is getting a dog, as it requires lots of time walking that I might not make time for otherwise! 🙂 If that’s not an option, blocking “personal time” on your calendar (and sticking with it!) can go a long way towards reminding you to value the “life” side of work/life balance.
What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?
This past month, I’ve had two big clients ask to extend our contract. This really takes the pressure off sales going into the holidays and feels like a huge win going into 2022!
What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?
I’m working with a business coach to further define and focus my consulting offering and am hoping to create some resources and webinars in 2022 to augment my consulting services. It’s exciting to have a better sense of where I want my business to go, and now I’m focused on putting in the hard work to get it there!
What excites you about being an Entreprenista League member?
I love being part of the community and meeting other entrepreneurs & consultants from all over the world! Starting your own business can feel very lonely, and having this network is empowering in addition to being helpful for education and business development.