Area Vice President, Services Innovation

McLean, Virginia
Oct 13, 2021
Nov 12, 2021
Full Time
Innovation and continual transformation relies on incubating and employing fast-growing, high-potential offers in emerging categories and markets. At Appian Customer Success, we continually develop both sustaining and transformational innovations to ensure we deliver best-in-class services and experiences to our customers.

As the Area Vice President of Services Innovation in Appian's Customer Success team, you will lead and manage a portfolio of strategic options that includes next-generation capabilities and offers. In this role you will lead and be involved in all aspects of developing next generation service products and options. This is both a leadership role and a hands-on role (at Appian, innovation is a hands-on activity). You will be required to wear many different hats as a corporate innovator responsible for incubating and scaling new products or business opportunities. Your contributions will lead not only to next-generation products and options, but also sustaining innovations and improvements to existing entities.

As the Area Vice President of Services Innovation you will

Create new offers and options by turning vague ideas, market insights, and evidence into concrete value propositions and solid businesses (or add-ons to existing business models). You will lead an innovation portfolio that comprises next generation service products and offers. The portfolio includes dedicated resources needed to design, build, deliver, and operate next generation disruptive offers; and the AVP of innovation is expected to directly contribute to these design, build, deliver, and operate activities (again, this is a hands-on role and you are a player-coach). In addition, the AVP of innovation must closely collaborate and work with territory/geography leaders responsible for established lines of business. And the role requires close collaboration with many departments outside of Customer Success (marketing, sales, engineering, finance, etc.) as well as customers. A non-exhaustive list of responsibilities includes:
  • Manage a portfolio of mixed priority and mixed sized initiatives; this requires traditional portfolio management activities (prioritization, communication, evaluation, decision making, etc.) along with project management and operations activities.
  • Create new offers and options that exploit the full power of Appian's platform and align with both Appian's strategy and our customers most strategic needs.
  • Design, experiment, adjust, pilot, communicate, operate, and refine service products, offers, and add-ons.
  • Act as a product line leader for new offers prior to them being advanced to the "scale" stage or being integrated into established product lines.
  • Create, manage, and audit pilot engagements as part of the innovation portfolio; as a player-coach this will at-times require the AVP of innovation to act as a consultant and/or project manager for these pilots.
  • Participate as a consultant on engagement teams as part of product line offerings and pilots within the portfolio. Perform roles needed to execute pilot engagements and collect feedback directly from the field.
  • Communicate vision, strategy, value propositions, problem statements, and other abstract ideas clearly using different mediums including: written narratives, presentations, videos, illustrations and diagrams.
  • Break down big ideas into small chunks of testable hypotheses that focus on value, feasibility, and viability.
  • Inspire and manage incubation teams and emergent product line teams responsible for bringing offers and capabilities to market.
  • Build and maintain constructive, collaborative relationships with stakeholders from clients and Appian.
  • Facilitate both internal and customer meetings, workshops, brainstorming and other collaborative sessions.
  • Evangelise new offers and options.
  • Collect feedback and evalue emergent offer performance; make adjustments to continually improve.
  • Willingness to travel; 30% to work with customers and our global team

Relevant experience, mindset, and traits

You have 15+ years of working experience in Portfolio Management, innovation initiatives, delivering change, and designing products (bringing them from ideation to implementation). You bring experiences with consulting, developing digital products, and building and using prototypes to test assumptions and collect feedback on a design direction. You are highly collaborative, and maintain a mindset of curiosity and openness when working across teams and functions. You practice curiosity by asking questions, learning through secondary research, talking to experts or others not like yourself, requesting feedback from others, and seeking out other perspectives. Additional details are as follows:

You possess the following traits and mindset
  • Facilitative leadership style; you excel working in a place characterized by ambiguity and unknowns. You lead with questions, not answers.
  • Empathy and a passion to work directly with customers
  • Humility
  • Exceptional relationship builder
  • Collaborative and support others; you do not view the world as as zero-sum game
  • Creativity, vision, and divergent thinking
  • Excellent communication and collaboration skills; you can clearly articulate abstract and conceptual ideas, usually with the aid of visuals. You can explain the benefits of ideas in verbal and visual presentations
  • Understand behavior psychology; how humans think, behave, and interact with change
  • Passion for continuous learning
  • Passion for mentoring and making others successful
  • Bias toward action
  • Effectively navigate a range of personalities; understand multiple agendas of others while simultaneously advancing his/her/their own

Your experiences likely include the following:
  • 15+ years of large-scale Agile and Design Thinking experience with methods such as XP, Scrum, Lean, Kanban, SAFe, or Disciplined Agile.
  • 10+ years managing portfolios comprised of both sustainment and transformational initiatives
  • Knowledge and applied experience with various innovation approaches, including, but not limited to: lean startup, zone management, design thinking, testing business ideas, product discovery, discovery experiments, validation experiments, etc.
  • Deep knowledge of Agile principles and practices and the ability to transfer that understanding at all levels of the organization.
  • Consulting and facilitation skills in leading technical teams
  • Highly developed communication skills to collaborate, build relationships, influence, negotiate and persuade others at all levels within and outside of IT
  • Using visualizations and story-based design to provide a shared big picture to help drive consistency in action; bring focus on points that matter in a complex problem space; reveal opportunities; communicate complex ideas effectively and efficiently, and tell compelling stories.
  • Product discovery techniques, including: alignment diagrams, storyboards, user interviews and user research, sketching, storyboards, prototypes, experiments, value hypothesis, demand testing
  • Run product discovery workshops/engagements

About Us:

Appian helps organizations build apps and workflows rapidly, with a low-code automation platform. Combining people, technologies, and data in a single workflow, Appian can help companies maximize their resources and improve business results. Many of the world's largest organizations use Appian applications to improve customer experience, achieve operational excellence, and simplify global risk management and compliance. Our employees create opportunities to drive hands-on impact both with our customers and throughout the organization, which creates an environment where meaningful work is met with career growth and opportunity. As a result, we are proud to have been recognized as a Washington Post Top Workplace for seven consecutive years. Simply put, we are changing the way businesses operate and our employees are to thank for Appian's success.

Appian Corporation is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, color, religion, national origin, disability, protected Veteran status, age, or any other characteristic protected by law. Further, Appian will not discriminate against applicants for inquiring about, discussing or disclosing their pay or, in certain circumstances, the pay of their co-worker, Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination .

If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the employment process, please contact us by email at and let us know the nature of your request and your contact information. Requests for accommodation will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please note that only inquiries concerning a request for reasonable accommodation will be responded to from this email address.

Similar jobs