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Navigating the Shift in Tech: A Thought Piece

To say that the last year was an economic challenge is probably an understatement. From early-stage startups to established corporates, the economic unrest has been tangible throughout the world. 

 

Our discussions with startup clients have changed from “how quickly can you get me a developer team, no matter the cost” to “can I see your pricing before we continue the conversation”. 

 

We are no longer talking solely about cashflow restraints, but seeing investors breathing down their portfolio company’s necks, urging them to be extremely cost conscious. This year, we’ve frequently encountered terms like layoffs and reductions. Seems like the tech bubble is slowly bursting. And I’m wondering, is this a good thing?

 

As I explain to my 3-year-old son – who is puzzled why mummy would rather sit at the laptop than build planes out of Duplo – money doesn’t just fall from the sky, but must be earned and handled with care. Every founder I’ve met over the last decade has earned every invested dollar with blood, sweat and tears (and not Duplo planes!). But from what I’ve seen, it’s not always been handled with care, and I believe the shift of cost consciousness we’re seeing now is a good one. Wages are levelling out (having been in the tech recruitment space for multiple years, I thought to myself it was getting a bit crazy), hiring is being approached more strategically and decision making is being anchored in data, rather than a pure gut feeling. One might argue that the speed of growth will decline, which I appreciate – and maybe it’s also a little bit less fun?

 

Speaking of fun, it may sound cliché, but as a team we’ve recently been asking ourselves, “Is there a more fun way to do this”? No matter the circumstances, there’s usually a way to salt the chaos and the hustle with some FUN, which will result in an outpour of endorphins, creativity and the feeling of unity amongst team members. Here are some ideas:

  • Attending a conference? Wear something fun like a hoodie you’ve branded for that event!
  • Got a virtual team all hands meeting? Put on a funky virtual background and make your colleagues smile!
  • Sending Christmas cards to your clients? Handwrite them!
  • Taking your team out for lunch? Choose a place with unusual dishes and ask everyone to put their phones in a box during that time!  
  • Writing a video script or an article? Add some comedy (where appropriate)!     

The list goes on. 

 

To all my dear colleagues, our clients and startup peers: You are doing a fantastic job at holding your heads up high and smiling through the highs and lows of life. Keep hustling, keep being kind and keep having fun!

 

Merry Christmas,

Carmen & The Ivy Tech Team

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