How the lead producer of Osmo from BYJU’S Reading Adventure gets it done
Jordana Drell is the lead producer of Reading Adventure, the new personalized learn-to-read program released this month from Osmo from BYJU’S. We asked her what an average workday looks like for her.
Location: Brooklyn, NY
What I do before my workday: I have two children. The oldest has to get up very early because she has a long subway ride to school. So I get up before her in the morning and start her day’s prep. This year, that means waking up around 6 am. But last winter, all my daughter wanted was a fresh dutch baby pancake made for her every morning before school. So, in an effort to make sure she would eat breakfast before school, I would get up at 5:45 every morning and make her a fresh dutch baby every morning.
The first thing I do when I wake up is make coffee. Then I get my daughter’s day started: I make her breakfast and pack her lunch. Then, I get her up and out the door by 7 am.
After she’s successfully off for school, I go for a morning run. After my run, it’s time to get my 4-year-old daughter off on her day.
We also have a family dog named Foam (he’s named after a Phish song) roaming the house. Once both kids are off to school, I am ready to go by 8:30. That is the goal of the morning.
Once I get started at my desk …
I try to get to my desk by 9 or 9:30 (most of us at Osmo work remotely). I often start the day by checking in with my co-workers in India, who are ending their workday. Then, it’s quiet time before my co-workers on the West Coast sign on (where the majority of US-based Osmo employees are) and the day of meetings start. During this time, there are the fun things like testing our products, or looking at what our competitors are doing. This is also a good time to catch up on last night’s Slack messages or emails.
What my day looks like …
We are a very meeting-heavy organization. The fun part of having a schedule so filled with meetings is that I absolutely love everyone I work with. Osmonauts are all wonderful and professional and I learn from them everyday. And they’re hilarious.
To keep things light, I like to wear funny hats to virtual meetings. Some of the work we do is challenging, so I think it’s important to make a lot of it fun and be silly and come up with fun ideas.
My official title is lead producer but I do a lot of product management. A lot of my day is managing the budget and managing resources. For example, contracts, paying bills, etc. But the more fun stuff is asking questions like ‘are we on schedule? What are we working on next? Now that this thing is live, what feedback are we getting? What comes next? What do we do more of? What do we take away?’ That’s the part of my day that excites me.
Here’s generally how my meetings break down: There’s a few general categories of questions I ask most days in meetings: Is there hardware on time? Where are we with the software? What is the research saying? What’s happening with vision? How is it all coming together? Where is the marketing? When is the product launching? What happens now that it’s launched? It’s all crazy. Take today, which is a Monday. Like most people, I have a lot of status meetings on Monday mornings. My meetings cover things like hardware, software design, meeting with Reading Adventure producers, and then bringing the whole team together to coordinate the whole thing. It’s this piece, this piece, this piece, let’s put the whole thing together.
After work: I come downstairs from my home office and we do dinner, bath, and bedtime for the kids. I do live in Brooklyn and the pre-COVID life is coming back. My husband and I do go out on a weekly date night. My father-in-law actually just called me and said come see Billy Joel with me tonight. So that type of social life is returning which is exciting!