PFL’s HQ-East Leaders leverage career crossover to build Indianapolis office
The 25th floor of the BMO Harris Bank building — which sits directly across Pennsylvania Street from Salesforce Tower downtown — is the future home to the ever expanding HQ East for PFL. If you haven’t read our feature story, PFL is a marketing technology company that is pioneering the growth of the new category known as “Tactile Marketing Automation” (TMA).
Just over twelve months after standing up the Indianapolis headquarters operations, PFL is moving from the seventh floor up to the 25th and expanding from 1,700 sq. ft. to 13,100 sq. ft., with double the team members and plans to keep growing. The company’s HQ-East office in Indianapolis currently employs 30 people and will grow up to 60 total employees by January. PFL’s HQ West office, located in Livingston and Bozeman, Montana, employs approximately 380 people.
PFL provides sales enablement and marketing automation solutions, a great deal of which is performed through integrations with Salesforce Core CRM and Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Marketo, Engagio, and Oracle Eloqua. PFL also provides printing, mailing and fulfillment services to directly connect B2B and B2C organizations with cutting-edge solutions that accelerate productivity and drive business forward.
“We’re growing so fast that it’s a real problem for a few more weeks until we move into our new space, which is five times bigger than where we are now,” said Josh Jones, national talent acquisition manager at PFL. “I think it shows a lot of trust from our founder and CEO Andrew Field to put this leadership team in place and know that we are going to create something special together.”
The PFL HQ East leadership team includes:
- Ryan Chenoweth (Vice President of Sales) worked at Baker Hill and Angie’s List
- Rachel Johnson (Director, Demand Gen Marketing) worked at Baker Hill, iGoDigital/ExactTarget/Salesforce and Angie’s List
- Darrell Beaty (Director, Customer Success) worked at Ontario Systems and Genesys
- Josh Jones (National Talent Acquisition Manager) worked at Angie’s List and Salesforce
- Adam Dixon (Manager, Software Development) moved to Indianapolis from PFL’s HQ West in Montana, originally from North Carolina
- Kate Davis (Manager, Business Development) worked at ExactTarget/Salesforce and PactSafe
A lot has been written about Indy’s “Big Bang” when the sale of Software Artistry generated a great deal of wealth — wealth of cash and wealth of talent and experience — that fueled the growth of tech in Indianapolis for decades. What could be happening today as a fourth or fifth wave of entrepreneurial growth in the Greater Indianapolis Area stems from the talent nurtured at the companies spawned by the Big Bang, as well as a handful of pioneers.
Five of the six leaders at PFL’s HQ East learned their specialties working at Ontario Systems, Baker Hill, Interactive Intelligence/Genesys, Angie’s List and ExactTarget/Salesforce. The sixth member of the team is Montana transplant Adam Dixon, who has embraced his role as both software development lead and the “guy who didn’t grow up here,” but helped establish and has been present in PFL’s HQ-East office from day one.
Interestingly, the five aforementioned leaders who are from Indiana have crossed paths as co-workers, partners or customers in their various roles at some of Indy’s most prominent tech firms.
“We’re all tied together through our backgrounds and experiences working at these foundational companies that built up the tech community here in Indiana,” said Ryan Chenoweth. “I worked at Baker Hill with Rachel’s father (Brian Modiano), who was our CFO, and Rachel was an intern there at one point, too. I was introduced to Baker Hill by Wil Davis of Ontario Systems, which is where Darrell worked for many years. And all of us crossed paths again and again as we progressed in our careers.”
One of the benefits of having a healthy dose of serendipitous career crossover among the leadership at PFL’s HQ East is a cultural shorthand they share that has helped to quickly build up their own unique culture. “I think we understand better how each other thinks and approaches projects, and we have these shared experiences from the same companies led by fearless entrepreneurs that binds us together,” Rachel Johnson said.
As HQ East has grown, the leadership team located in Indianapolis has taken over national administration of their departments, including managing teams at HQ West in Montana. According to the six HQ East leaders, teleconferencing for regular face-to-face communication is important, and the company’s transparency practices really make everyone feel like they’re in it together working toward success.
There is no executive or general manager at PFL’s HQ East. The five vertical leaders report to executive leaders in Montana and work closely through daily briefings and weekly huddles with their teams.
“It’s a real testament to our CEO Andrew Field, to Wyeth Wyndham (SVP, Sales) and to Adam Dixon here for establishing this headquarters and making the first few strategic hires and setting a path for us that we’re racing down now and thriving,” said Chenoweth.
“We know what great looks like,” said Johnson. “We’ve been a part of great before, and now we’re out to build our own great.”