The space is the limit
Yes, we are alive. Yes, all the bills are paid. Yes, we have pivoted some things and have had sleepless nights to figure out where to go next. But oh yes, we feel very much ALIVE.
Written by — Katriina Kiviluoto, CEO & Co-founder
We set ourselves on one hell of a ride when the band known as Recordly saw daylight. And the ride continues. Even though our sight is strongly headed forward, it’s only once you get to celebrate your 1st birthday. So here are some reflections. I will try to avoid too many of those bubbly LinkedIn-proof adjectives to describe the journey so far. It’s not really that cool and I like to keep it real. As a mum of three, I know that giving birth (also a company) is not on most parts that pretty.
A bit more than a year ago, we started Recordly with a vision of what it could become. We wanted to:
- Create a culture company for data people, since there are not many.
- Dust off some old-fashioned brain-work-related practices.
- Extract value from data platforms, since there are many but fewer with proven cases for actually bringing money.
When I read the launch blog, some of the points felt more relevant than others. To sum it up, there has definitely been space on the market for Recordly: “Companies need trusted advisors in data. Too many companies are left hanging with unusable data solutions and no competence or process changes making use of it.” So far, we have worked with a number of interesting customers such as UPME, Verkkokauppa.com, Lumo Analytics, Utopia…More about them later 🤫 In this talent market, it has also resonated well to have a company that truly focuses on data stuff and has a crew that has seen the dark days of Cognos and can be at ease with modern tricks and treats of techy stuff.
What is most intriguing to me personally is the fact that I feel we have succeeded to take steps towards a community that influences the key decisions at the company, keeps things transparent, and the corporate-kinda stuff (that hinders our success) at the bare minimum. Voilá, there you have some of the elements we call culture. I have also found my place facilitating discussions where people try to form decisions for a company they genuinely like to work in. This, on the other hand, has become a driving force for my own work. To be honest, that’s not always easy for a person who is very action-oriented and has a lot of opinions :) But oh yes, it’s so much worth it and relevant for our people I think. And when not, they are not afraid of shutting me up either.
WHAT WE HAVE CREATED
The first year has been very successful in terms of numbers. We will go over 3 million with a good level of profitability to share from. Since I am a fan of “do the right things and numbers will follow”, I believe that the factor behind the numbers is actually a bunch of passionate people that are given permission to do, dare and dream. We have managed to hire our seed crew (30) and they are more than I could have dreamt for: so much fun and smart as f***. When they have been given space and opportunity to grow, they have risen to new heights.
We have laid down the fundamentals of the company together and I believe that will bear fruit also in the future: Building our strategy (we have tried to avoid doing the normal bullshit version that companies normally have. Man, it is very hard to do!), formulating our purpose (we show what is possible with data so that one can dream, nice isn’t it), and figuring out how we would best learn together. We have also tried to work on the practices for a promise of what it means that a company is built by employees for employees. This includes joint decision-making processes, tip-off raise practices, personalized benefits as well as profit share, and stock programs. Voilá, another set of things we call our culture!
For the following year, I am looking to continue on these fine steps and even stabilize some things that roll. When you are day-in-day-out in an environment where you can try, it can also be an exhausting run. I hope to find new fellow Recordlians and cool customers (and cases) to work on also in the future. However, we should also realize that:
- Recordly is already a successful data company that has become somewhat what we dreamed of - no need to panic anymore (message to myself)
- Since we have some practices that already work out quite well, we should keep’em rolling. Ping our upcoming Human Care Specialist.
- Dusting off some old ways of working life is a slow process. It is hard to give feedback and open your mouth with your opinion if you have been told to be quiet before. I am happy that we are all aboard in continuing this journey. Building a culture where trust and safety are present one brick at a time.
- Sometimes it is ok to just stop and look around you and enjoy (note also to me).
I am so proud. I am also a bit tired but so happy and excited. We are Recordly - the business data company (REALLY!) and I can’t wait for the adventures of our second year 🖤