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June 14th, 2021
Getting to Know Kiky Tangerine from Grammarly

Grammarly offers an AI-powered communication assistant that is used by over 30 million people daily and 30,000 workplace teams around the world. Because effective communication requires more than just good spelling and grammar, Grammarly's writing assistant provides real-time suggestions around multiple dimensions of communication, including correctness, clarity, engagement, and delivery. Grammarly is one of the major sponsors of the Vancouver Startup Week and we are so happy that they have an office in Vancouver. Kiky Tangerine, Grammarly's Engineering Manager, spoke at VSW this year. We decided to have a quick chat with him afterward to learn more about him and his experiences at the company.

Kiky Tangerine

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do at Grammarly?

A: My name is Kiky Tangerine, and I am an engineering manager on the browser extension team at Grammarly. Grammarly opened our office in Vancouver about a year and a half ago, and we're still growing pretty rapidly. I am primarily responsible for leading the browser extension team and also helping the Grammarly Vancouver office grow.

Q: How long have you been involved with Grammarly? What are your daily tasks involved?

A: It was my first anniversary with Grammarly not too long ago, so I have been with Grammarly for a year. Day to day tasks for myself include:
  • Setting strategies and planning improvement in specifically the two areas: performance and ubiquity of Grammarly's browser extension product.
  • Helping my team unblock things that are part of their project.
  • Facilitating discussions related to new features other product teams want to launch and ironing out any cross-functional dependencies.

Q: How does your team support your company goals?

A: We work very closely with the product team, first and foremost, to make sure that we're building the right features to help improve user engagement, user delight, and value for specific use cases that other teams identify. For instance, we work closely with the Grammarly Business team, which involves building features to help enterprise customers drive positive business outcomes. Our team also helps increase product usage by creating onboarding experiences that allow new users to discover additional Grammarly features.

Q: What gets you most excited about the company's future? And where do you see the company in the next few years?

A: I think I'm most excited about our rapid growth in both the number of team members and the number of product users. When I joined, Grammarly Business got me excited because we are just scratching the surface of what Grammarly can do with our digital communication assistant in the enterprise sector. Organizations have massive silent costs around miscommunication yearly, and Grammarly is in a prime position to solve that challenge.

"I'm happy that it truly addresses our mission, which is to improve lives by improving communication."

Q: And what would you say is different from working here at Grammarly versus the other places that you've worked at?

A: I came from a larger corporation prior to Grammarly, so I didn't have much experience working in a medium-sized or smaller company. I wasn't sure what to expect when I joined. However, I quickly realized that everybody I interacted with felt connected to each other regardless of their location, function, or background. We all share a similar set of values which has made working together so much easier.

"It blows my mind that everybody's living by the Grammarly values. Ethical, adaptable, gritty, empathetic, and remarkable."

Everybody doesn't just know the values, but they live by them and apply it in their day-to-day interactions with team members, customers, and other stakeholders.

From my previous experiences, company values were words plastered on the wall. Everybody knows about them, but not everybody believes in them, subscribes to them, or applies them in their day-to-day life. So it surprised me knowing that this team has been living by the Grammarly values.

Q: What is the proudest moment of your journey with Grammarly so far?

A: It's only been one year, but there's a lot of moments I can think of. If I had to pick one, it would be the moment when we shipped our performance improvement updates for my team's product, which is the browser extension. We significantly increased our core metrics, and we see that users engaged more with our product after we launched performance optimization improvement.

Another moment was when we shipped our extension UI redesign. It felt like we accomplished something truly spectacular by both removing legacy experience and unifying different experiences that Grammarly offers into a more streamlined interface.

Thank you, Grammarly, for supporting VSW, and special thanks to Kiky for speaking at the event. It was great to hear about your experiences!

If you want to make your writing clear and engaging, present your best self every time you type, and communicate with an impact, Grammarly will make that possible for you. Having polished writing and getting your message across concisely and clearly is so important in day-to-day life for effective communication, so there really is no reason not to take advantage of this digital tool. Grammarly's basic version is free to everyone. If you need it for professional use or in-depth writing for school or work, Grammarly offers a Premium program for a monthly subscription. Go check out the link and sign up!

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