At Concise, we have 5 things we value most: Teamwork, Creativity, Innovation, Commitment, and Passion.
We believe in the saying "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts" or more simply put: 2+2=10.
Actual teamwork doesn't happen by itself. People sitting in the same room doesn’t reflect teamwork. It requires a safe culture and understanding between its members. In fact, psychological safety is an element on our #superagile wheel (read more about this wheel in our new e-book). We value that each team member feels safe and can express themselves freely. Teamwork can be built by using different practices, honest communication, and a trusting atmosphere. In a team, trust is not something that has to be earned; it should just be there.
Ask any startup investor and they will tell you that teamwork is the most important thing they look for in a startup. The second most important thing is also teamwork and so is the third and so on... But there is no magical checklist for successful teamwork. It is a creative challenge since every team is unique. Luckily, creativity is another one of our values.
As part of the #superagile wheel, we also measure an element called full stack team. This is not the same as a full-stack developer. It means the team is independent enough to have the knowledge needed to build the digital product they are responsible for. The important factor here is that even if the strengths of team members are different, they always have a shared goal and ownership feeling for the whole product. Supporting each other, sharing challenges, learning from one another, and celebrating the successes and failures together are practical examples of teamwork in Concise product teams.
As Paul Samuel once said:
If you need support, try to do it with others; If you want to keep yourself from giving up, tell others of your goals; If you are unsure of the steps, involve a guide's help. If a step looks too big a leap, break it in half.
We see that building a successful product requires a lot of creativity. Each product and challenge is so different, just like each business or team. As we try to walk in the end-user's shoes, we always value choosing the best solution for that specific situation. It’s why we believe in constant learning, trying out new technologies, and asking the business people to explain the ‘why’ of the product. We continue learning techniques to think outside of the box and believe in self-organizing teams who take ownership of the product they build. This is another reason we have supporting leaders instead of project managers. We take time to understand how we can be more and more creative.
Our Chief Creativity Officer, Loore Martma, has spent time discussing the importance of attention, responsibility, and safety in each team. This helps to bring more creativity into daily work. To kill or not to kill the creativity, that was the question. We completely agree with Loore's belief:
Creativity is the greatest asset you and your team have. Learn to take care of it, invest in it, and nurture it together. All it takes is a few simple yet key practices to follow and soon the magic will happen!
Sometimes it feels like a buzzword. For Concise, it actually has a deeper meaning with actions to go along with it. That’s why we still value it.
Innovation is everywhere! It doesn't have to be a product. It can be anywhere - in processes, business models, or the way you do digital marketing for example. We have played with all of them and, for us, #superagile is also innovation. It combines different elements that exist already, but in a unique way. In our development process, developers speak directly to business people every day. No project managers in between! Thanks to innovation, our business model has also been experimented with.
Another special aspect of our business is that pricing can be based on our clients’ success. Looking for a partner to develop your product? Instead of hourly or daily rates, we can agree on how you pay for direct business success in a way that suits you!
But of course, in addition to all of that, we build innovative products with our customers as well. Close cooperation and trust is the key to successful partnerships. Innovation lies in teamwork because you cannot innovate without trust.
Our Chief Technology Officer, Mikk Soone, has said that there is a reason why git commit is called commit. You take responsibility for the code. Once you push it, it will soon go to production and it's your commitment to check that it's running smoothly for your end-users and delivering the value intended. If it isn’t, then you’ll need to tweak and fix it until it does.
We feel that each team member thinks of the built product as their own. This ownership feeling is very important to the success of a #superagile environment.
We are committed to long term relationships with our customers, but also highly committed to each and every one of our Concisers too.
We see passion as an important part of our #superagile culture because it is the basis for our other values - teamwork, creativity, innovation, and commitment. Passion means that you care deeply about what you do and that it brings you joy. It is a journey towards both self-development and business success.
When we hire new Concisers, we do not look for specific technology experience. We look for passion to build world-changing products. If you have that, you will learn playfully and quickly. The technology world is constantly changing anyway! Sometimes being passionate means having strong arguments to find the best solution, accepting your failures, or even feeling so happy for another’s success that you helped them achieve. It’s all about doing things wholeheartedly - being all in.
As Howard Thurman has said:
Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.