BYF France - Product Management

Philippe Gass

Role: Online Product Manager

Department: Microsoft Store

Location: Paris, France


Hi everyone ! My name is Philippe and I am currently working as Online Product Manager for the French Microsoft Store.

My Background

Once upon a time, a little boy came down to earth with a revolutionary invention that would change the fate of humanity forever... Ok even if this story sounds pretty cool let’s stop now and tell you my real story (which is not a sci-fi movie, but is still interesting to read if you have 5 minutes).
Originally from France, I am finishing my Master Degree in Management at Neoma Business School in Rouen. Working at Microsoft had been one of my dreams since I did my first internship at Skype back in summer 2011. I was amazed by the history of this firm but also by its unique company culture, which I would summarize in 3 points:

Innovation.

When you work at Microsoft, you are surrounded by very talented people who are passionate about what they do and want to achieve great things. For that reason, you are always encouraged to think out of the box and take initiatives to do things differently.

Working together.

A company is like a soccer team. You can be part of an excellent team with some of the best players in the world, but if all the players do not work together, then this team will never win (unless Messi or Ronaldo is in your team and even then…). The collaboration at work is often described at Microsoft as growth mindset. It consists in believing that the intelligence is not fixed and one can learn (“grow its brain”) thanks to the others and will, as a result, achieve more.

A unified diversity.

One of the key to Microsoft success is its diversity: diversity in education, age, origin, experience… But despite all these differences, everyone is working together as “One Microsoft” to pursue the same goal: Make a difference.

My role

Let’s start with a fun fact: my twin brother Olivier did an internship at Microsoft France exactly one year before me. As a result, my job during my first week at Microsoft basically came down to explaining who I was to all the people who wished me “welcome back!”.


After meeting all these new friendly faces, the serious stuff started! I joined the amazing MS Store team which is responsible of Microsoft’s ecommerce website. Believe it or not, this online store is fairly new so there are many exciting projects to take part in and the growth potential is huge.
I am personally managing the Xbox and Lumia product ranges (if you need a discount on the Lumia 650, just shoot me an email…). In other words, I am responsible for the online activity related to those products: product launches, creation of promotions… My job first consists of analysing and summarizing the current situation of the market in terms of pricing and offers. After presenting these results and my suggestions to my team, I work with the merchandiser who manages the website to implement the new offers on the website. Last but not least, I use Excel and Power-Bi to analyse the KPIs and assess whether our marketing activity was successful or not. This role is really interesting because I get to work on the strategy of the online store while improving my analytical skills.

My experience

So far my experience at Microsoft has been awesome. In addition to my tasks, I have been able to manage some projects on my own to improve the visibility and traffic of our website. I have had the opportunity to work with many different people (product managers, business developers, merchandisers…) from all around the world.

My top tips

If you are considering an internship at Microsoft, here are my top tips for you to make the most out of your experience

Be honest:

No need to say you are an expert in coding if it is not the case. People at Microsoft want to know what kind of person you are to see if you fit in with the company culture. But do not speak about your previous weekend when you got drunk in a bar, it would not be appropriate.

Be curious:

If you have the chance to start to working at Microsoft, you are going to experience many new things and meet a lot of new people. Just keep an open mind and try to learn as many things as you can. But do not be that one person who tries to get the dirt on every employee in the company.

Be passionate:

If you apply at Microsoft, do not apply just because you want to have a nice name on your CV. Apply because you are interested in the company’s history or you love the company culture... But do not say you would be ready to sell your little sister (who is very annoying anyway) to get a job at Microsoft.

All in all, just be yourself and I am sure you will do great

Eager to read more?