Tarissa, our innovation champion at Aim for the past five years, invites you to join her on a journey of change and success in the world of innovation.
This is her story.
When I started at Aim 5 years ago, it was a completely different company than where we stand now. We believe that in a world where innovation creates value, we, as a company, also need to think in value (not in money). We therefore wanted to shift our business model from A to B, which definitely wasn’t easy. However, learning from this journey has been incredible, and I can now say that we are moving in the right direction.
When trying to innovate and living up to your potential, you have to break old patterns. This can be hard because of the habits the company has in their daily operations. Adapting to a new business model, process or just a new way of working doesn’t come naturally. It sometimes takes extreme situations to force you into a new world. COVID-19 pandemic came and there we tried to turn the negative into something positive. We found ways to thrive.
During the crisis we made some important business decisions which affected our daily operations. Firstly we shifted from working with freelancers to hiring people on board. Our thoughts were that by keeping the knowledge in our team we can create an internal academy for our employees which will result in creating a high performance team. Secondly we became extremely focussed on operational excellence. By steering on data we created a steep learning curve in order to create more value in our products, resulting in more happy customers.
Of course we’re still not there yet. Change management is a long process and it can take years to improve small habits. However, looking back I think I would’ve handled certain things differently. Instead of focusing on the hierarchy of the company I would align the initiative with team members more, as they are the ones who need to adjust the most. My advice would be to find the right person in the organization who can promote the new way of working. This person should be in the middle of the daily operations. You also need a senior level who really can support you in communicating the change to higher management and the delivery team. This way you can make the change a priority across the organization.
For me, this whole experience is one of the things in my journey at Aim I’m mostly proud of. It allowed me to really understand the business and therefore I could step in as an advisor for our management team. It allowed me to bring the organization together and diminish the gap within the internal teams. It allowed me to implement tooling for tracking our projects and these are all small examples of my learning path at Aim. We can now honestly see positive results when looking at our high performance team and our operational excellence. Finally, we can say our back office is rock solid and ready for growth!