Meet the KiSSFLOW Team: Kausik

Manish Nepal

June 30th, 2017 Kissuகிசு  

Kaushik

Name: Kausikram Krishnasayee
Role/Designation: Product Manager

How do you make KiSSFLOW great?

I add relevant features and cut out redundancies in KiSSFLOW. I write specs, make sure enhancements are built according to those specs, and talk to customers to make sure things are working the way we expect.

I’m essentially the KiSSFLOW gardener who chops off weeds and prunes trees to keep the product spiffy.

What’s your signature work with KiSSFLOW?

I built the A/B testing framework in the marketing team during my two-year stint as a marketer. As a product manager, I built the Wishlist platform where KiSSFLOW customers can submit requests for new features.

What is the driving force behind KiSSFLOW’s success?

We have a very dedicated core team of people who don’t blink their eyes in the face of adversity. We have had our share of ups and downs, but going from the 17-member team when I joined to becoming a 100+ team now, we have not diluted our culture much. We are the same perseverance-driven team who goes against every problem with persistence.

Why the switch from marketing to product management?

We didn’t have a marketing team at OrangeScape when I joined here as an engineer.

Before OrangeScape, I was part of a startup where I did a variety of things such as engineering, marketing, sales, product management, etc. I had also recently graduated with an MBA degree in marketing. Both of those things came together when we had a little bit of restructuring at OrangeScape and I ended up heading KiSSFLOW’s growth hacking team.

Later, I moved to product management because I believed my real calling was in building great products.

What would you be doing if you weren’t at your current job?

I’d probably be building aeroplanes. I almost got admitted to a Ph.D program in aerospace at the University of Michigan to specialize on Magnetoplasmadynamic thrusters. However, my scholarship was still in doubt and the aviation industry was hit hard due to the recession.

My second best bet was to try my hands at programming which came naturally to me. My mentor had recently founded a startup and he offered me a chance to intern with the company on the same day I graduated. We built a product together later on and programming eventually grew on me as a career choice.

What are some nerdiest things you have ever done?

  • I once broke Google’s captcha using their own algorithm.
  • Ages back, when I had a slow internet connection at home, I figured out a way to automatically download the entire image of my favorite comic series in the drive for me to read later.
  • When I lost a lot of photographs during the recent Chennai floods, I wrote a program the following year that automatically uploaded all my camera photos to a cloud storage platform when I brought the camera over to my home wi-fi.
  • A few years ago, I was a mentor in a prototyping event where I had 15 hours of free time because nobody actually needed mentoring. So I wrote a prototype for a user onboarding software which later evolved into a product.

Do you play any musical instruments?

I have been dabbling with music on and off. I play mridangam, cajón, tabla, and a few other percussion instruments. I sing as well.

What’s the number one thing in your bucket list right now?

I wanted to travel to 30 countries before I turned 30, which doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. Now it’s going to be 40 by 40. (Laughs)

Which is the craziest place you’ve ever travelled?

I and my friends once hitchhiked 1,000-odd kilometers over a period of 7 days. We randomly hailed cabs and rode on top of lorries from the Dawki to the Bum La. It was crazy because we faced uncertain weather conditions and came across places that didn’t have roads at all. But we also got an opportunity to do a lot of sightseeing on the way.

What are your everyday joys of life?

Going to the gym in the morning, waking up to Liverpool FC winning, and coming to work and solving good problems.

If you had one free hour each day, how would you use it?

I would use it to calm myself down and meditate because that’s one thing that I’ve always wanted to do but never figured out the time for.

From The Team:

Kausik is most notable for:

Being a multi-disciplinary guy who can talk about any topic under the sun. He is the kind of guy who thoroughly enjoys life, often backpacks to go see the world, and manages his work-life balance very well.

His biggest addictions?

He’s always focused on fitness one way or the other, he travels a lot, and he goes deep to explore the finer details of a topic even if he’s not indulging in it, such as drinking.

What are some of his strangest talents?

He can mix great cocktails despite being a teetotaler. For some reason, he happens to be the first person to be introduced when a new female team member joins us.

If you had to describe Kausik to a new team member, what would you say?

  • If you want to get something done really fast, talk to Kausik.
  • He’s the pillar of OS.
  • You should see him drum the mridangam.

Catchphrases:

He says “a whole bunch of things” a whole bunch of times.

Nicknames:

Everyone calls him Kau (short for Kausik). He also goes by the lesser-known name of STR, an equivalent of Ironman in Tamil movies, who is also weird. We once custom-made a water bottle for him with STR on it.