Zillow Rentals Insider: Meet Elissa Kline, Product Manager
She came from a real estate family. In fact, she is also a landlord. She understands the aches and pains that property management and landlording comes with. That’s why when Elissa Kline heard about Zillow Rentals, it was the perfect fusion of two industries she had a deep connection with: technology and real estate.
Since Kline joined the team, she’s been working hard to bring new features and products to our customers. Knowing that she’s making the lives of landlords and property managers easier gives her the satisfaction from helping out professionals like her mom.
Read more about Elissa Kline, Zillow Rentals Product Manager, in a recent interview we had with her:
Q: What brought you to the Zillow Rentals team?
I liked the product. I liked David.
I wanted to move to a product I could be passionate about. When I read the job description I thought, “Wow, now that’s something I could get excited about.”
Q: Why are you passionate about our product?
I come from a real estate family. My grandfather got into investing in real estate and decided to buy his own apartment buildings. Then he taught his children to invest in real estate.
My mom owns and manages a number of apartments in Washington D.C. and Florida. I myself am a landlord, too.
Q: What do you do here?
I manage the product roadmap for some of our product lines.
I work closely with the development team to bring new features and products to market. I’m kind of like the business side of the product.
Q: What are some of the challenges you face as a product manager?
Trying to innovate as quickly as possible while maintaining a superb experience for our existing customers is always a challenge.
We move very quickly, so we need to make sure we don’t break anything.
Q: What’s your biggest accomplishment so far?
Finding new ways to make property managers’ lives easier.
For me, that’s cool because my mom is a property manager. So I can think about how this product can potentially help run her business.
Q: Where are you originally from?
Potomac, Maryland. It’s a suburb of Washington D.C.
Q: Where did you work before?
I previously worked for QuinStreet and Amazon.com. Before business school, I worked at the Wall Street Journal for four years.
Q: What’s it like working in San Francisco in contrast to New York City?
The biggest difference between working in San Francisco and New York is that I can wear jeans to work. You work the same amount of hours and work just as hard, but you get to wear jeans.
Q: Do you have a favorite Zillow Rentals memory?
The development team learned the Gangnam Style dance.
Jon and I found the YouTube clip and started teaching 4-5 of us to do the dance.
Q: Where do you like to eat lunch in the city?
My new favorite place is the Nom Nom truck.
Q: What do you order?
I order the pork banh mi.
Q: What are your hobbies outside of work?
I love to travel.
I recently spent a month in Switzerland, followed by a week in Portugal. I’ve studied abroad in Berlin and been on scary sketchy buses in El Salvador. And, of course, I hiked the Inca Trail.
Q: Have you been on all the continents?
No. I’m missing Africa, Australia and Antarctica.
Q: What’s one little-known fact about you?
I can make a really good Donald Duck impression.