Published on June 28th, 2012 | by Nicole0
How I’ve Watched Formstack Grow Through Change
But there’s more to growth than just a bigger office and more bodies. What’s been most evident is seeing each Formstacker grow as an individual and adapt to the constant change, in turn strengthening the team and making Formstack more successful.
Growth is exciting, but it’s also challenging. When you double in size, you can’t just keep doing things the same way you did before. And that can be a little painful for everyone involved. In order to figure out what works, it takes some trial and error. Sometimes a lot of error. But the speed at which you can learn from failures, move past them, and make improvements makes all the difference.
Here are five things I’ve learned through Formstack’s growth:
1) Sometimes You Just Need to Slow Down
As a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) company, we naturally move quickly. We iterate on our product and add new features at a lightning pace, and we have a strong marketing engine that follows suit. Combine that with a big focus on growth, and things can get crazy. I would say one of the toughest lessons we are learning right now is that it’s okay to slow things down. The last thing we want to do is sacrifice quality for speed of delivery.
2) Don’t Get Too Comfortable – The Final 10%
Our CEO, Chris Byers, likes to talk about what he refers to as “the final 10%.” We tend to get stuck in our ways of doing things and get too comfortable, sometimes stopping short of where we need to end up. When things get busy and are constantly changing, it’s vital that we don’t forget the final 10%…the extra hour of testing, the final review of content, the follow through on a partner conversation. Those things matter.
3) Communication – The Glue that Holds it all Together
Any tech company will see a certain amount of tension between development/product and marketing/sales. It’s inevitable. And when you’re moving quickly, that tension can rear its ugly head more often. Even within departments, it’s difficult to add new team members and processes and keep everyone on the same page. But at the end of the day, timely, clear, and consistent communication is the glue that holds everything together.
4) Hire Smartly & Trust Your Team
One of the greatest aspects of being part of the Formstack team is that each of us are empowered to own our roles and have the autonomy and trust to make things happen. Our leadership team takes great care in finding the best fit employees who not only have the right skill sets, but also fit into the Formstack culture. And when you have the right team in place, those leading can empower their team to get stuff done. Period.
5) When All Else Fails, Stick to Your Values
In 2012, Formstack adopted “SAFE” to help us remember and stick to our values in everything we do. SAFE represents the principles of Simple, Agile, Fun, and Elegant. These guiding values can be applied to each task, project, conversation, situation, etc. that we encounter.
Have you experienced periods of growth and change in your company? What’s worked? What challenges have you faced? Share your thoughts in the comments below!