Our guest this week is Elena Giralt, a Product Marketing Manager at Hiro. You can usually find her researching market trends, writing feature announcements or planning campaigns—whatever it takes to shine a light on Hiro’s amazing products!
Thanks for volunteering to be a guest on the Hiro’s Journey! Tell us a bit about yourself.
I would describe myself as hard-working and easy-going. I feel incredibly lucky to work at Hiro, where I can connect with and learn from the growing community of Stacks developers and builders.
I first discovered blockchain in 2018 while I was in grad school. I researched crypto adoption in Venezuela, where my family is originally from, and became fascinated with the technology and its potential.
Outside of work, I run Blockchain Latinx, a monthly meetup group that explores what blockchain means for Latinos and for Latin America. Outside of crypto, I like puzzles, scavenger hunts and debating big ideas.
How did you end up at Hiro?
I first heard about Blockstack when Muneeb came to speak at a Digital Currency class I was taking at NYU. I was really interested in what he described as the tech stack for web3 and the evolution of the internet from read-write to read-write-own. Years later, what ultimately drew me to Hiro was the people. Gina and Kaitlin encouraged me to join the growing marketing team, and the rest is history.
What ultimately drew me to Hiro was the people.
What are some of your favorite things about the team and our culture?
The team at Hiro is ambitious—engineering moonshots is one of the core company values. What this means in practice is that I get to work alongside uniquely talented individuals to realize the vision of building a better, more secure internet. No two days are the same!
I’d also add that Hiro respects and celebrates the fact that you have a life outside of work. Many companies say they value work-life balance, but at Hiro there is a strong culture of taking the time you need to recharge and rebalance. As a new mom, I appreciate that.
What are some of the projects you’ve been working on recently?
Most of my work happens behind the scenes. This includes market research, user interviews and helping craft messaging for upcoming products and features. Currently, I am most excited about plans we have for Bitcoin Unleashed in Miami on April 5-6. It will be the largest Stacks community gathering of the year, and I’ll be sharing the developer stage with Joe Bender, our community manager! Bring your bucket hats. It’s going to be fun.
What has been the biggest surprise since you joined?
I was pleasantly surprised by the extent to which Hiro collects and responds to community feedback to inform product decisions. From the discord channels to the developer surveys, one-on-one conversations to GitHub discussions, everyone at Hiro is committed to listening, learning and making developers' lives easier.
The second thing that surprised me is how fast we are growing the team to meet the demands of the Stacks ecosystem. By the way, we’re hiring, so now is a great time to join if you are on the fence about diving into web3!
What do you enjoy outside of work?
I get a lot of inspiration and energy from people. Whether it’s listening to interviews from StoryCorps or attending a local meetup, I am always curious to learn about different perspectives and ideas. I also like discovering hidden gems off the beaten path. I usually check out Atlas Obscura for unusual landmarks whenever I visit a new place.
Ok, super-Hiro, if you could have one superpower, what would it be and why?
Vulcan mind-meld, hands down. For the uninitiated, a Vulcan mind-meld comes from the show Star Trek, and it refers to a telepathic way to share your thoughts with someone else. I like this superpower because in a perfect world, we would all be able to understand each other’s perspectives.
What is your advice for someone contemplating a move to work in crypto full-time?
I actually wrote an article about this with Manasi Vora, a good friend of mine and Web3 all star! My main advice is to start with what you know. Chances are, there is a blockchain-related use case or startup that is related to something you are passionate about. This is true for fashion, food, space travel - you name it, someone’s putting a blockchain on it! By starting with an area you’re already interested in, you’ll be able to identify gaps in the market and find opportunities to jump in and add value.