As a team we came to realize that in the meantime we managed to complete many things. All in harmony? No. But we did and that is one of the main reasons for gathering together: how can we improve to make 2014 even better! If I look back than 2013 was the year of internationalization. For Exact that is something that has been done before with mixed results. Now that the company in 2012 was divided into a Cloud and Business Solutions unit things seem to accelerate. All employees are focused on either cloud (volume) or business (enterprise) from sales to marketing, from the receptionist until the managing director in the board of directors. This focus gave an enormous push to accelerate. Cloud with the saas delivery model is a specific game and deploying our products and business model in other countries is one of the main pillars in our strategyCloud with the saas delivery model is a specific game and deploying our products and business model in other countries is one of the main pillars in the strategy of Exact Cloud Solutions. I am very happy to be part of it which brings many challenges for us as a company but also for me personally. Although I have been working for many companies acting on a global scale, now positioned at the HQ of such a company is a completely different ball game. At 3Com, Peregrine and Savvion we were the Dutch sales & marketing office where strategy and programs were developed abroad. Now we are the ‘abroad’ which brings some very interesting dynamics into place.
Different playing boards
For me personally it is a major challenge transforming a national oriented marketing team into a truly international operating team. Brings along many challenges in different areas, from cultural to budgeting, from marketing strategy to operational excellence. All at once and no time to wait. Being part of this is really amazing. Enormous ambitions and growing on a year to year basis with 40-50%. Feeling together with all colleagues the momentum when getting things right outside our homegrown market this percentage could even be doubled. It feels like making the step from a senior marketing director towards a true CMO. Focus on the bigger movements, bigger topics and try to release the operational stuff but still be responsible for all that. Well, that is quite a challenge. By nature I love to dive into each and every detail which has to do with marketing, but this is simply impossible. It feels like making the step from a senior marketing director towards a true CMOSo for me it is about finding and creating a way where we practice marketing as a team in one common way but still being able to add local relevance. Building an organisation and more important a team that is willing to fight for each other and able to bring themselves and the team to a next level. During this weeks summit we made some major steps towards this ultimate goal. Because I truly believe that if as a team we are able t reach such a state of mind, this enables us to really excel. For me marketing is the constant journey to find our golden egg. THE specific optimization or tweak that all over sudden brings us as a company to the next level of growth. Chances of finding this golden egg will only increase by making more mistakes and learn from it in order to practice marketing even better.
And, did you find the golden egg?
And, did you find the golden egg? No. But I am sure we are coming closer. Many improvements we have discussed this week in the team and therefore created an environment for each and everyone of us to contribute pieces to this great journey. I truly believe in serendipity, finding things that we were not looking for. I am really convinced that we will end up in a direction that we wouldn’t have thought of before. If you look back at all successes in the past, most of them came all over sudden, a sort of happened by surprise. And although this is perceived in the market probably in such a way, the people behind that success had the courage and were brave to constantly search for new things. Make mistakes themselves but also let the team make their mistakes.