Written by Michael “Evil Boss” Rangstrup
For some years now, our motto has been “Not a Problem!”. It is a motto that was formed based on who we were at that time, rather than who we wanted to be. I am sure that many of our colleagues, partners and customers do not know exactly what we mean by this and how the motto came to be, so I will try to explain this in more detail in this post.
Many people will set up boundaries in their life regarding the challenges they can overcome or will take on. When introduced to a subject matter they know little about or when proposed a path with an unclear end goal, they immediately throw in the towel and excuse themselves from venturing any further. When it comes down to it, we all prefer living our life in our comfort zone.
But our company would not have been where it is today if we had not taken any chances. Our first project was Safewhere*Identify, a hugely complex system in a domain and using technologies that we had no prior knowledge of. Admittedly, we were a bit slow in taking it on initially, but once we got going we realized that we could deliver well through hard work, continuous motivation and unwavering dedication.
Our partners and customers were still hesitant regarding what could “really” be achieved via offshore outsourcing, but they did start to see that complexity of a system was not necessarily an unsurmountable issue.
Our next big project was for a central department under a key Danish Ministry. Due to a very tight budget and probably lack of inhouse resources, our main partner in Denmark decided to let us take this project on by ourselves. The specifications of requirement were weak and the possible ways to solve it open to interpretation.
As we got to know this project and customer in more detail, we also started to see a trend at the customer. Time and time over, suppliers were taking short cuts and delivering software that fulfilled the client requirements in the simplest possible way, but with no regard to its long-term viability.
We initially stood at this crossroad as well. There was a simple, yet shortsighted way to get the project done on time, which basically meant hardcoding the business logic on the client side. What more, this was really the road that the customer expected us to take. But we would ourselves not be happy with this solution and proposed to the customer a more extensive and long-term direction.
The customer - initially - did not care much what direction we took, since their main concern was the deadline and the budget. But as we slowly got further in the project the customer’s project team started to see the benefits and the mood on became more and more enthusiastic.
It took long nights and weekends of hard work and I personally delivered 100s of unpaid hours to this client. But we did deliver on time and within budget and at a quality that we were happy with.
The final product was a huge success. The customer did not want the progress to end and kept coming to us with change requests and extension ideas and our response kept being “Not a problem!”.
This customer is until this day still one of our main sources of new projects and we are now by far the biggest supplier with them. All because we did not take the easy way out.
This success has formed who we are today. We keep looking for challenges since we have the confidence that we can handle whatever is thrown our way. The people we hire are those who respond to new technologies with the answer “I would love to try that out!” rather than “Not really something I know anything about.” They are people who do not want to disappoint and will work day and night to keep a promise.
So if you want to be a true “Ritter”, make sure you meet your next challenge with the answer; “Not a Problem!”.
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