How to stay disruptive as you grow
Being a B2B solution like monday.com has its advantages, one of which is the chance to work with some of the most innovative companies out there. Like Fiverr® for example, the world’s largest marketplace for services starting at $5, that created work for millions of freelancers in over 150 countries in just over 3 years.
A company as disruptive as the one co-founded by Micha Kaufman and Shai Wininger, comes with an equally innovative company culture. And that, along with rapid growth, makes it an ideal customer for monday.com. We were eager to learn not only how they use our solution and what values it brings them, but also what were the hurdles they had to pass to get the company to use it. We felt other companies already using monday.com or considering it, could benefit a lot from this glimpse into the challenges and managerial practices of Fiverr, that grew to over 85 employees and world success in a very short time. Here is the interview we conducted with Shai Wininger, Co-Founder and former CTO at Fiverr.com
Q: What is monday.com to you and to Fiverr?
A: “monday.com helps Fiverr maintain its DNA while rapidly growing by promoting transparency and collaboration between everyone in the team. It’s a great tool for companies who experience growth. It helps companies overcome the problem of communication loss. As your team grows, getting everyone’s opinion and ideas becomes a challenge. It also helps everyone, not only managers, in getting a clear snapshot of what people are working on and what’s about to be launched soon.
“monday.com helps overcome these challenges on two levels: the management level, where the transparency it drives gives you both the big picture, as well as the ability to deep dive into any topic. And the employee level – overcoming the true personal pain employees experience as they lose that level of involvement and acknowledgment they enjoyed when the startup was still small.
“I’d like to stress that last bit: Fiverr for example moved from inhabiting one floor in a building, where you could catch up on everything while making coffee together, to inhabiting an entire six story building. So even if you’re chatting with your colleagues in the kitchenette, the conversation is still confined to your own floor and department. That large cross-company awareness that each and every employee used to have by overhearing people talk in the hallway, or just interacting with other people in the same room is gone. We have to work harder to acknowledge people’s work nowadays.
“Another thing that happens as you grow, is that each feature or event involves many more people and departments. This lets people become experts in what they do and focus on what they’re good at, but it also presents a problem in which the vision of the big picture is lost. People start to feel like executioners and not owners.
“At this point, in comes monday.com and lets all the employees subscribe to any topic they’re involved in or interested in – and suddenly they get to see and experience everything that resulted from their personal efforts. Let’s say you’re a coder, and you’ve worked on a certain feature. You subscribe to that feature and can follow everything that happens to it after it left your realm. If that feature ends up getting a story on WSJ, the coder who coded it will know, will be acknowledged in the company and will take pride in its success.
“If a new feature gets covered by TechCrunch, with monday.com the coder who coded it will know about it and also get acknowledged for it.”
“Without full transparency into a project life cycle people who take part in shaping parts of it become kind of surrogates, who carry the baby and give birth, but don’t get to see their child growing up, falling in love, raising a family. Giving that to our employees – seeing them witness and get acknowledgment for the fruits of their labor – is one of the most awesome things we could do for them. monday.com gave us exactly that.
“monday.com has the power to connect people, even across continents. When you have offices in multiple locations and across time zones as we do at Fiverr, keeping everyone on the same page becomes a true challenge. Our teams in Tel Aviv, East and West coast and also Europe use monday.com to keep in sync with what’s happening.
“Using monday.com bridges time and space and lets our distributed teams tap into the stream of the company’s activity and communication and feel everything that is happening, without having to wait for that weekly update call. It gives them the opportunity to respond, to be involved in the process. This makes a huge difference for their deeper understanding of company needs, their motivation and their level of commitment.
“Since monday.com taps into the company’s DNA, we see it as a strategic tool.”
Q: Why monday.com?
A: “I was looking for something to help us maintain collaboration and transparency while we grow. Something that will give us more than just a snapshot of what’s going on right now, but will generate a trail of breadcrumbs, so that new people joining in, could just go in monday.com and view the entire evolution of what they’re about to be part of.”
Q: How difficult was adoption – what did it take?
A: “I introduced monday.com to the team, but it made so much sense that it needed very little persuasion. I just needed to communicate the rationale behind it and the value everyone will get. A major contributor to the successful adoption in Fiverr was the ability to add subscribers to a topic without having to wait for them to join. This is a true growth feature.”