Natalie Nagele, CEO @ Wildbit
Everything about my interactions with this company has been amazing, it makes me feel warm just dealing with them. These are the thoughts I had after signing up to trial the Wildbit software. Whether it was their automated emails or discussions with their Customer Success team, everything screamed out they wanted nothing but my success. I wanted to scratch a bit deeper and CEO Natalie very kindly agreed to come on our #leadership tips series. Thank you Natalie.
Who is the best boss you had and why?
I had a boss right out of college that really shaped how I try to lead my team. She was really tough, and most people didn’t like working for her. She was brutally honest and would painstakingly review every piece of work. What I loved about working for her is how much she pushed me and how much I learned in the process. She would red-line everything, and then explain to me why she did it. That meant the next time I wouldn’t repeat the same mistake. I’ve seen too often work just get changed with no explanation, which means the person on the receiving end doesn’t know why it happened. I try to explain every thought that I have, whether happy or frustrated. This way, I can have real expectations of my team meeting expectations.
What are your top 3 tips for being a better leader?
1. Shut up and listen (I suck at this).
2. Remember that the work we’re doing isn’t saving lives, so focusing on team happiness takes priority over any deadline.
3. Push your team to be better, because they want to be better and it’s easy to get complacent.
What conventional corporate wisdom no longer applies in today’s workplace?
Counting hours worked doesn’t feel productive to me. If you get a ton done by focusing your time in 35 hours a week, that’s fantastic. I’d rather my team have flexible hours and work only when they’re feeling sharp and focused. No need to sit in front of the computer waiting for 5:00 to roll around.
Workplaces are changing, I predict…
Open floor plans will slowly die out. Whether it’s because remote becomes big(ger) or, more likely, leaders realize that their team needs to have quiet, focused space to work. I’m still amazed at how many people I interview who tell me they want to work remote because they get their best work done at home AFTER work. It’s not because they’re more productive when home, it’s because home is where they have quiet, focus time. Instead, their workplace should protect them from distraction so home can be where they relax.
P.S. From Mark, you have to check out Wildbit’s website and you’ll see / feel instantly why they are different.