We’ve talked in our last article about the things we’ve learned since fully embracing being a product-building studio. After all, it’s fully changed how we relate to our clients and what kind of collaborations we want to build with them.
What we haven’t talked about as much is how our new way of working has or hasn’t changed the way we do things here inside the TappSquad. When you set out to help founders take their products from concept to scaling product, the way you work together and grow together will inadvertently get shaped by the products and founders you work with long-term.
Being part of the Tapptitude team is feeling like you have a real impact on the products you’re working on, and that your opinions are taken into account. We’ve strived to create the kind of space where our colleagues feel like they can voice any question, or ask for help in any situation. And if you look at the products we deliver, at the time our team members spend being a part of this company, at the atmosphere each product team creates, I think we’re keeping up a good job.
We wanted to give you a glimpse of what that means in terms of everyday perspectives from our various colleagues. Let’s take a look!
1. We choose products and projects that we’ll be proud to have worked on
Here’s the deal. We put ourselves out there to work with committed startup founders who are looking to build and grow digital products that make a positive impact at scale. And we end up talking to hundreds of founders a year, some ready to work with us, some who need to do more validation work, more fundraising before they’re ready to build an actual digital product.
What makes us especially proud is that most of the time, we actually get to work on the kind of products we know people will be pleased to have in their lives. Whether it’s because it makes adopting a healthy habit easier, like Wellory, or because it makes an everyday job more straightforward, like Tap2Map, the products we work on have a tangible effect on how people spend their time.
2. We always have room to grow and learn something new
Tapptitude provides full-function product teams to the founders we work with. For the Tapp Squad, this means that each colleague gets to see several projects grow from concept to scaling product the longer they work with us. It’s the perfect playground to stay up to date with the latest technologies, iterate on a product to keep improving it, and build the kind of relationships where taking ownership of the work you do is normal.
It doesn’t really matter if the project is smaller or bigger, it enables you to do a lot of stakeholder management. Being in this industry brings out a lot of leadership skills as well, and we can apply them across projects regardless of their team size.
I’ve been working on Wellory, the nutrition wellness app for the past year and a half and I grew immensely during this time. I got to work with different technologies and third party integrations, both desktop and mobile. And we’ve really developed a very good relationship with them.
3. We ask the real questions
When you work on products day in and day out, with the purpose of seeing them succeed and seeing users get something of value out of them, it’s no surprise that everyone involved gets invested in the success of the project.
Put this together with a strong sense of trust in the skills of the people you work with, both colleagues and founders, and you end up having the kind of conversations where the team uncovers what’s really important about a product’s roadmap.
One part of my job is to ask anyone who comes to me with a solution, whether it’s a colleague or a client, if they want to do this because it’s for themselves and it’s a low-hanging solution for the skillset or resources they have, or because it’s the ideal solution for the users we are working for. Changing the framing like this, towards what’s impactful for the users, is what starts the kind of questioning and problem-solving that’s innovative in product building.
4. We like to surround ourselves with smart people
When you come into the startup space, the most surprising part of the job is entering dailies and seeing how many disciplines need to come together to make your product happen. The fact of the matter is that great products are built when teams bringing different skills to the table come together with the purpose of delivering something impactful at scale.
I really love thinking about the strategy behind products, the go-to-market strategy or why certain features make sense for a product, while others don’t. I love the way we work iteratively to make the product better bit by bit.
Something particular to my job as a Product Consultant is that I wouldn’t be able to do all the strategy, all the reports, all the quality stuff without being in constant contact with all the teams from inside the company, be they developers, designers, QA or product managers.
5. We think asking for help is a strength, not a weakness
Between building products that scale and aligning the work of a team of founders, product managers, designers, developers and QA engineers, it’s no wonder that at some point you’ll want to stop and ask for help. In fact, one of the best parts of working here is that you’ll always find someone to help you with a challenge that you have.
I like the fact that we have an amazing learning environment. Anytime I find a bug that I cannot solve or a feature that I do not know how to implement, there is a whole team of developers ready to help me. You always have someone you can ask for help and even if we do not have all the answers, we always manage to find them together. We talk about new technologies and whether or not they are appropriate for our projects and the learning process never stops.
6. We organise some pretty memorable events
When you’ve got people who are very passionate about their work, they’ll also show the same enthusiasm in every part of their life. We tend to get excited around coffee and breakfast, get together for birthdays and meals just because, and twice a year go all out for our team building and our company anniversary. Like this year.
Building relationships in a hybrid environment has its own challenges, but that doesn’t stop us from creating new ways of enjoying each other’s company. It can be the little things, like custom emojis on slack and making sure calls aren’t only about work. But it’s also about supporting the team in getting together in ways that they love, whether that means food, or football, or going out to try some craft beer, and last, but not least, making sure that the events we organise for the whole team are memorable experiences.
7. We’re always ready to offer movie or book recommendations
After all the strategizing and designing and coding, not to mention the testing and demos, of course we’ll look for ways to (Netflix and) chill. You’ll find here the kind of teammates that will be happy to take a coffee break to talk about the latest TV show episode, the latest album that caught their ear, or an interest that sent them down the Wikipedia rabbit hole.
Expect us to be a creative bunch of real professionals, always willing to lend a helping hand, whether it’s the case of a problem you’re trying to solve or a pizza you can’t finish by yourself. I feel like I always have something to learn from my colleagues. And when you feel the need of a break, you can easily find someone to talk to about topics ranging from music and literature to physics, memes, TV Shows and the future of tech.
8. We love to play around with jokes and memes
To wrap up this mix of people with great tastes who love what they do, don’t be surprised that humour is the glue that keeps us all together. On good days, we’ll share memes to make light of what’s going on on our desktop, in the office, or the world. On days when everything crashes, it’s how we find the motivation to try one more fix.
Over the past almost 2 years at Tapptitude I’ve been through the excitement of a cool challenge, frustration of bugs and the joy of a new app release. Through it all, the team was always there to share the great moments and also relieve some pressure in the harder times.
I’d say we walk a fine line between taking pride in what we do and self-deprecating humour, which is awesome. We are committed to doing great work, but also know when to not take ourselves too seriously, which keeps us grounded.
At the end of the day, you won’t find a person at Tapptitude who doesn’t stand out in some way. The big things that make us a team are straightforward. On the one hand, we love products, and we love seeing people actually get something out of digital products, and we love making sure that what we do today with the product we work on will have an impact on the long run.
On the other hand, we’re the kind of people who bring their whole selves to work, who will talk about their latest passions, and will ask about what matters to them to make sure their job and collaborations are worthwhile.
If this sounds like the kind of team you’d like to be a part of, make sure to check out our careers page for our open positions. And if this sounds like the kind of team you’d love to have working on your product, we’d love to have a chat.
Erika is a full-stack marketer passionate about the intersection between technology and social impact. She mixes research with content design and a human touch to help people and startups succeed in delivering value through their work. When not writing or talking to people, you’ll find her reading or quoting Hamilton for any life situation.