9 Feb 2023

A Day in the Life of Pauline From Prime Video



I am the manager of the Prime Video Automated Reasoning team, the team is a mix of software developers engineers and applied scientists. We also work with scholars, who are both Professors at universities and amazon employees. The main focus of my team is to provide Prime Video developers with automated reasoning-based tools to assist them in confidently evolving the App. For a gentle introduction to automated reasoning, please read this article, and to know more about what my team does, please have a look at this and this article.


What does a typical day look like? 

Mornings are usually my focus time. I start the morning by reading my Slacks and emails. Then I have usually 2 hours of focus time, during which I cut the notifications and I spend time doing some focused work, such as working on our vision, on the definition of the product, on the project management, or on people’s careers. The end of my mornings usually include 1:1s with the people in my team.

My afternoons are usually dedicated to collaborative work with my team or other teams.

After 5 pm, we usually don’t have meetings, to make sure that people can have a good work-life balance. So one day out of two, I close my computer at 5 pm to get my child from the nursery, otherwise, I enjoy some extra focus time to work.


What are your responsibilities? 

As a manager, I help people to grow in their careers and I am responsible for the team’s strategy and deliveries.

Managing people is about helping them to grow and be happy in their job. At Amazon, everyone owns their own career, but it’s my role to help people who report to me be aware of their strengths so that they can double down on them. It’s also my role to help them identify growth areas so that we can make a plan to tackle them. That’s a part of my job that I really like because I find it interesting to understand what drives a person, and what a person struggles with, and then tailor the tasks they take to what they want to grow on. Concretely, I have weekly 1:1s and bimonthly career discussions with my team members.

I work with the scientists and engineers in my team to define where we want to go, what we want to deliver and how. We meet our customers regularly, inspect our metrics, and listen to their feedback to understand deeply their pain points. We then work backwards from this to establish our vision. From this, we define what we need to do this year, this quarter, this month, and this week, to deliver our solution. The particularity of my team is that we need scientific innovation to achieve our vision. I work with the scientists and scholars in my team to identify the gaps that require innovation and to define a scientific agenda.


What do you like the most about your job? 

It’s not so much one thing that I like about my job, it’s more the combination of three things: science, business and people. I like that my day-to-day work requires some deep understanding of the science and technology we are developing. I like that it’s business oriented, we always think about the value and the impact for our customers. As I said above, I enjoy the people management aspect of my role, and I also just enjoy working with people in a team where we all candidly challenge each other’s point of view, I find that it’s a very good way to grow.

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