“No man is an island” – we essentially are the sum of our relationships.
As a strong relationship-advocate, I feel that just like our personal lives, no business can be successful unless it fosters a myriad of relationships.
This is especially more relevant as we move into a time when the talk around organizations circle around becoming more technology and process-driven.
It is imperative to build strong relationships across the organization and the business spectrum. It is further critical to focus on the human aspect, the relationships, across the landscape when you want to build a successful business simply because – processes don’t run businesses. People do.
I will say with some certainty that we have been able to grow a successful organization. A cursory glance shows our upward trajectory. Today, some of the top Fortune 100 companies form our client base. Using our technological expertise, we have developed mission-critical systems in niche and challenging domains. We have established our dominance over both legacy and new cutting-edge technologies as we grew from a small double-digit organization to one that now employs hundreds of technologists. The journey has been incredible.
Two valuable relationships that have helped us become a fast-growing and successful organization – our relationship with our customers and with our employees.
But how did we build these relationships?
The Customers and Us
Every management expert talks about the importance of building customer relationships. But do customer relationships begin at the end of the transaction, or do they begin at the inception of your offer?
Customer relationships are not just about the sales transaction – the sale only marks the starting point of the relationship. We can call it a ‘relationship’ only when the transaction leads to ‘value’. Value creation happens when you deliver high-quality work consistently. Value happens when the transaction has a positive impact on the client’s bottom line. And you know you have delivered this value when the client begins to treat you as their partners – as an indelible extension of their internal team.
Our journey began when software development work was outsourced to India only because of low costs. But we wanted to change this perception and demonstrate how we can deliver high-quality work that adds ‘value’. We wanted to create the best, most robust, action-driven, high-value software applications by making the smartest technology choices. We wanted these applications to deliver a tangible impact on our client’s business and move them along the road to profitability. We wanted to become an extension of our clients’ internal team.
And thus, we decided to offer ‘Innovation-as- a- Service’.
This is not just a buzzword for us.
Using our technology and domain expertise, we deliver innovative solutions that have a direct impact on our customers’ businesses. These solutions contribute to their transformation initiatives, help them create a competitive advantage in the market, and improve quality.
We have been able to build strong customer relationships and have become a natural extension of our client’s internal teams. Ensuring our customer’s success by understanding their business and their problems is our ultimate objective – and no process or technology bias can influence that.
The Employees and Us
Drawing up creative and strong software solutions, especially for complex industries, demands an unequivocal focus on talent. This was the case with us, as well.
Our core team comprises hard-core technologists with in-depth domain expertise. They also possess a very high work ethic complemented with a business-oriented mindset. This core team worked as a blueprint for the workforce we wanted to build.
The level of customer-focus we have and the kind of customer relationships we foster need extensive technological skills. This has to be complemented with the capability to work large complex, and distributed systems, and the comfort of working with new and legacy technology. We look for a different kind of technical fluency – one that is not bound to technologies and preferences but is rooted in business orientation, domain knowledge, and a very keen eye for detail.
What differentiates a successful team from a not-so-successful one? The answer lies in attitude. It was clear from the beginning that looking for technical expertise is not enough. Our unique hiring process made sure that we build an organization that has technical aptitude complementing work attitudes. We have been fortunate to have a team that is a balanced mix of both.
We also have to credit our work environment. Our workforce consists of mature, talented, and skilled technicians and managers who are excited by all things ‘technology’. These are self-motivated people who love solving interesting and complex problems with powerful technology solutions.
Our work environment is free of second-guessing. Our organizational culture thrives on trust and fairness.
We believe that one can always question approaches but never the intent.
All these small measures have helped us build solid relationships with our employees.
Management, in all fairness, is just an administrative layer. We are all technologists-first…technologists who want to build interesting technical solutions to solve complex challenges and help our clients succeed and capably deliver ‘Innovation-as- a- Service’.
For us at Wissen, the play of relationships is what has helped to keep the wheels turning at all times. Perhaps because of this, even during this pandemic, our business remained unscathed – be it customer retention or employee engagement.
We have been able to realize our dream of building our organization not as a ‘company’ but as a ‘platform’ capable of solving the most vexing technological problems.