The RapDev Ethos

June 9, 2022
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3
min read

Creativity - Creative engineering is like magic. We are consultants and field experts with engineering at our core, dedicating our skills and experience to help our customers expand and evolve their technological investments in the ServiceNow and Datadog platforms. If we perform at the levels to which we aspire, and always strive to do what’s right for our customers, they will ultimately reward us with the right to help them and become their trusted partners. We have to always push the boundaries of our solution designs and recommendations to ensure we don’t settle only for what the customer is asking of us, but instead guiding them towards what is best for them longer term. We should obsess over our customer’s needs from the moment they engage us to help design a solution, until the day we deliver and hand off our knowledge. We should always innovate for our customers, make sure we provide engineering suggestions beyond what they know the platforms are capable of, and always find ways to give them more than what they thought was possible. We are not in the business of forcing customers to be stuck with us. We earn our business and trust by delivering great engineering work and letting the customer choose to continue partnering with us. We should always be proud of the work we do.

Transparency - Transparency and honesty are at the heart of all of our conversations, through both internal and external communication. Internally, all of our conversations, data, challenges and wins are shared in open forms of communication. We learn from each other’s solutions and conversations, and we must make a conscious effort to avoid making conversations private unless absolutely necessary. Open slack channels, broad email lists and open-office dialogue should be at our core. With our customers, we have to earn their trust over time by ensuring we maintain the same level of transparency. We have to do our best to ensure we are keeping them aware of any potential challenges, anything that may impact our ability to deliver, and any decisions we have made that may impact timelines. Keeping this from our customers will only make things more challenging in the long run and undermine their trust in us. They are our partners, we must treat them as such.

Culture - We have our own unique culture that we have worked very, very hard to build and must continue to give 110% to maintain it.  Avoid unnecessary meetings, do not overbook focus time, prioritize communicating over chat tools in open channels where possible, avoid emails and video calls unless necessary. Avoid unnecessary processes and formalities. We don’t want to become a 5000 employee corporation. Maintain flexibility and the ability to pivot. Don’t create unnecessarily rigid rules and guidelines that you expect everyone to follow.  Some structure is good, especially as we grow, but anything beyond a framework should be seriously scrutinized and evaluated by the team. Use checklists over rigid processes.  Make sure we hire people we want to work with, we shouldn’t settle for less and shouldn’t cut corners because we are under pressure to hire. Talent attracts talent, I truly believe in that. Work hard, play hard.  Remember to take time off and spend time with family and friends. We have unlimited PTO for a reason, I urge us all to use it at least one week a quarter and more when possible. This culture may not always align with our customers’.  This is acceptable, this is not a problem, we must share this early on and ensure our customers are aware of how we operate to mitigate any potential challenges or friction in our relationship.

Flexibility - Projects will get delayed, we will uncover new challenges, life happens, it can happen to any project we’re working on. Our customers will change their minds, change their scopes, and ask us to bend where they need us to bend. This is one of the biggest things that sets us apart from our competitors and what makes working with RapDev easy and memorable. We should not push back on such requests; it’s bound to happen with any organization. We have all been through this at some point in our careers. Instead, we should accommodate this to the best of our ability and ensure that the customer knows our true and honest intentions to help them as much as possible. This is how we will earn our customers' trust, which in turn will translate into long-term partnerships.  Keeping a happy customer is infinitely easier than winning a new one, and our data has proven this time and time again. Remember to keep things light, casual and fun. Don’t get too serious. We are all human at the end of the day and we should treat our peers and our customers the same. Getting too formal is no fun for anyone.

Finally - as we continue to grow our presence in the ServiceNow and Datadog ecosystems, we should always remember that we have each other’s backs. We will strive to hire the highest caliber of talent across all of our teams and push each other to go even further. As such, trust that any problem is solvable and no challenge is too big. I truly believe that we have the best engineers out there, and that should give us all the confidence to innovate beyond our competition’s imagination. Lean on each other to push the boundaries of what we can collectively accomplish as a team. Don’t hesitate to make big promises to our customers. Challenge them and challenge yourselves to take on harder engineering problems because that is what has and will continue to set us apart. Try new things, don’t do what everyone else does just because that’s how it’s done. Think outside the box, think big, think different (a little Apple motivation there).

As I always say - keep your head down, do good work, and keep on keeping on; the rest will work itself out. We are all very lucky to be part of this journey!

written by
Tameem Hourani
Tameem Hourani
Boston
I'm an Engineer in Boston, started my career as a Cisco guy and quickly took a liking for Tech-Ops. Learned a ton over the past 5 years in the DevOps space so I decided to start blogging about it!
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