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Leading in Marketing: What 2021 brought, and what 2022 might have to offer

Ever since we founded Adverity in 2015 we’ve experienced fast growth overall but 2021 was a challenging year, in almost every aspect. Not only did we hire no less than 200 new employees – thus more...

Ever since we founded Adverity in 2015 we’ve experienced fast growth overall but 2021 was a challenging year, in almost every aspect. Not only did we hire no less than 200 new employees – thus more than doubling our staff – we also had to do this in a quite unusual fashion, all while the ongoing pandemic posted its very own challenges and perils. What it took us to overcome those challenges and grow faster – and of course stronger! – I recently discussed among many other aspects of our daily work with investor and start-up founder Florian Gschwandtner for an episode of his Leadership Podcast by Leaders21.

Growing stronger – together

The backbone of any group and organization that aims to achieve a common goal is the team itself. At Adverity, this means we want to provide companies with all tools required to properly utilize data analytics and automatization to properly follow through with their marketing strategies – and this is impossible to achieve without having great people to work with us. In the past year we have hired some 200 talents around the world, thus more than doubling our staff.

Of course, not only attracting and engaging, but also integrating them all in a difficult time like this is a tremendous challenge but we did manage to cope with it. Working remotely hasn’t been anything new for us and in fact we have always been celebrating not only a ‘home office’ but rather an ‘anywhere office’ culture. We have shown that seeing each other physically is not a binding prerequisite to create the feeling of being part of a team.

Open communications and transparency are the key to success. We are committed to both and have introduced virtual standups as well as all-hands meetings to show each other what is getting done around the globe. This doesn’t mean that we won’t need to maintain offices, of course. But rather than showing up there daily for a regular, boring 9-5 job we want to establish offices as places to meet where we can come together for workshops and events. All this helps us create a way of working that balances the needs of each individual while meeting the requirements of our rapidly growing company, across any location. It’s not about remote-only but about remote-first – to benefit from the best of both worlds.

What we learned

Florian characterized us as a ‘Scale-Up’ and I think he is quite right at that. As we’ve grown so tremendously over the past year, we’ve been dealing with the challenge to maintain our work organization and culture just as we’d wanted all while scaling up our business. Obviously, fast growth in terms of staff will put heavy strains on any organizational structure but we’ve found a way of dealing with this as well. Again, open communications proved paramount to get the team to cooperate and jointly improve our ability to scale – and this is something I definitely want to maintain in the future.

Improvement we seek not only within our own organization but also beyond, which is why we have started some great efforts in terms of CSR. All employees are now eligible for two paid days off to support social causes or NGOs of their liking. Since 2019 we have offset all our CO2 emissions. Not only do we offset all our travel emissions, but we have also offset all our hosting emissions retrospectively, so we can proudly say that Adverity´s hosting is green.

What we want

Speaking of the future: We have a very clear idea where we want to go – regarding our product, more precisely where we are and what we want to achieve in the future, and what we can achieve, even though the market might not yet know what it needs. The past year has shown what we are capable of and what we want to be, and we will certainly strive to maintain all that in 2022 – and much more than that.

Author: Alexander Igelsböck

Alex is co-founder and CEO at Adverity.

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