Meet Kong’s New CMO, Juliette Rizkallah!
We’re thrilled to welcome Juliette Rizkallah to the Kong family as our first chief marketing officer!
Juliette brings a unique background grounded in business, strategy and data-driven marketing that will help take Kong to new heights. A seasoned leader with more than 30 years of experience in marketing, sales development and growth strategy, she has led and scaled some of the world’s largest technology companies.
She most recently served as CMO for A Cloud Guru, a cloud learning platform acquired this year by Pluralsight for $2B. Prior to that, Juliette was CMO at SailPoint, where she developed and led the company’s worldwide marketing and was instrumental in the company’s successful 2017 IPO. She has also held senior marketing leadership roles at Check Point Software Technologies, BusinessObjects, CA and Oracle, and currently serves on the board of Elemica, a digital supply chain company.
I sat down with Juliette to get to know her on a more personal level, including why she joined Kong, who had the biggest influence on her career, how to raise successful people and more!
We’re so excited to have you on board at Kong! What was it about Kong that made you want to join our team?
Juliette: I am so excited as well! What made me so eager to join Kong was threefold:
- The immense market Kong is in
- Kong’s leadership and visionary position in that market
- The people/Kongers – from the executives I’ve talked to, the marketing team I am now working with, to our board members who are so in tune with the business
What are you looking forward to most as a Konger?
Juliette: To see the Kong brand become synonymous with APIs, to see our growth exceed plan year over year, and to see the excitement in Kongers’ eyes for what is coming and what is possible.
You’ve had a successful career that spans across Marketing, Sales Development and Growth Strategy. What has been your biggest achievement? What are you most proud of?
Juliette: Bringing one of my former companies, SailPoint, to a successful IPO was a true achievement visible to everyone. Another achievement – less visible but more personal – is seeing my former teammates grow into Chief Marketing Officer roles and thank me for my coaching, guidance and support during their careers. That is today one of the most satisfying achievements for me.
Who would you say has been the biggest influence on your career?
Juliette: That is a hard one because at each critical point in my career, I had a champion who influenced me in some way. But if I have to name one person, it would be Oldrich Fishmeister, a partner at my first consulting firm in France. He trusted me, a consultant with 15 months of experience, in shifting the whole direction of a client engagement based on a basic analysis I made.
He trusted me more than I trusted myself at that time, but the trust he put in me so early in my career influenced me to always be bold and to not follow the conventional path if I thought there was a better way.
If you weren’t in Marketing, what would you be doing today?
Juliette: I honestly do not know. I never had a real career plan – I followed opportunities that were presented to me and my gut feeling.
What’s your one must-read, must-watch or must-listen that you recommend to everyone?
Juliette: I am not much of a business book reader, but I love parenting books, so for parents or future parents, I recommend “How to raise successful people” by Esther Wojcicki. It is full of wisdom and great stories about the best innovators who grew up in Silicon Valley.
What is the one item you can’t live without? And why?
Juliette: I am not attached to anything material really, but I cannot live without my family.
Lastly, what is your favorite API?
Juliette: The Paypal API for quick checkout on so many online shopping sites. This saves me considerable time not having to enter personal data each time I buy something! (This may say something about how much I shop online…)
Listen to Juliette on the Legends on Sales and Marketing podcast.