Product Intern

June 2018 • San Francisco, CA

What I liked

At Fountain, I truly found what it feels like to work with a group of fun-loving, smart, tenacious creatives. Everyone in their own right took ownership of their work and pushed forward to ensure that neither quality or quantity would be traded off. I greatly appreciated the amount of agency each person gave me, fully trusting me, a mere intern, with complete projects or customer-contingent problems. There was a lack of bureaucracy in the company overall, so it was refreshing to take things head on and engage with team members I saw everyday with no difference between the weight and importance of our work minus my title of intern.

What I wish was different

Working at a startup, everyone’s very forward looking and I’ve read about startup culture but didn’t expect the reality to fit the stories to the T. One thing I wished was more present was a sense of mentorship. I don’t have a traditional design background, and product management isn’t exactly something you learn at school, so I had hoped to receive more guidance from my coworkers. Not to say I don’t-there’s a huge learning curve already at Fountain, practicing both quick, aggressive implementation in a heuristic environment. I’ve gained so much in the past three weeks, but because everyone is so busy, I’ve become an integral part of the team as well and I feel like there was a lack of oversight. This lends to things like company bureaucracies, systematic approaches, even whole design processes being lost, in comparison to bigger companies where a lot of these would be found.


Learn the value of self-sufficiency, scrappiness, and resourcefulness. Many times, I was overcome with imposter syndrome, afraid that I would not be able to meet expectations or would be perceived as inexperienced. However, I learned to adapt to the fast-paced environment quickly with the knowledge that everyone else was hustling and growing just as I was. A lot of the issues that I faced could not be resolved even if others had tried to help me; I would have to step out of my comfort zone and be proactive about find solutions myself.
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