My First 30 Days at Vendia

As anyone who works at a startup knows, that is about 6 months in ‘normal’ company life. It’s been a fast few weeks but diving right in is the only way to get started.

So with that mentality - let’s go!

Onboarding

I was a little worried about starting a job remotely. It’s hard to build bonds and rapport over Zoom, not to mention getting access to all the tools and systems. Luckily, Vendia loves processes - and there is a straightforward and simple onboarding toolkit and workflow.

And then when it came to building bonds...well that part is easy with all these kind humans.

During my initial meet and greets with the team I learned that...

  • A product manager just moved into a new house in Austin that happens to be across the street from my elementary school
  • I share a love of silly movies (aka anything in which Will Farrell yells) with a solutions architect
  • A member of our sales team has cats named after fictional Parks and Rec characters

So all in all, onboarding was pretty easy thanks to the systems and kind people at Vendia.

Company Culture

Confession: I’m a company culture junky. I spend way to much of my internet-time reading pieces about the culture and teams - like this trendy one or this business school classic one.

Company culture is hard to pinpoint. It’s not solved with a policy, rarely does it come down to just leadership, and most often it’s talked to death without much action.

Kind Human

However, the Kind Human Policy seems to actually be real. From the top down and from left to right we are kind humans first.

Here are just a few ways I’ve seen the kind human policy in action:

  1. I had a migraine on day 3 and 4 and I took the afternoons off to rest. No worries about making a bad first impression.
  2. A solutions architect jumped in to help the marketing team publish a white paper to help us meet our weekly content goal.
  3. A developer took the time to in explain in detail “Smart Contracts” to me.
  4. After I mentioned in a company meeting that I liked board games I was invited to the #board-game Slack channel.

While some of these things seem small - it really adds up.

Though we are 'kind humans' that doesn't preclude us from having a healthy amount of debate. Everyone's passion and POV has led to plenty of meaty conversations that ultimately end with better outcomes for our customers. And the Kind Human Policy serves to make sure we discuss in a deliberate and respectful way.

Connect Meetings

Every other week the entire team jumps onto a Zoom call for some company updates but also just to connect. In my first meeting the newbies played two truths and a lie (see below for mine) where I learned that someone has an avocado allergy (TRAGIC!).

By the time the second meeting rolled around I was giving a brief overview of our content strategy - complete with some Office Space memes.

Sometimes company meetings just serve to put faces to the names you see on Slack - but in this case, I felt like I was part of the talented (and a little silly) team smiling back at me.

Ok, so what about the actual work?

The beautiful thing about growth marketing at a start up is that you basically build from scratch. I didn’t have some funky HubSpot system I had to figure out, there wasn’t a clunky project management software to decipher, or any sort of “this is how it’s done” mindset.

The tough thing about growth marketing at a start up is that you basically build from scratch (see what I did there?). I’m finding myself trying to quickly build programs that mimic the mature programs from my previous roles. For example, I am launching a “baby ABM” program - complete with automation, customer segmentation, and a bunch of new ads on LinkedIn.

I also got to experience working with our co-founders first hand at an offsite in Seattle. I observed how Shruthi and Tim think about Vendia and our customers. There’s always something exciting about working with founders - their passion and insights are on a whole other level.

They were anxious not just to share their thoughts but to also get mine - it made for a dynamic and energetic two days. We talked about everything from strategizing short-term content strategy to crazy ideas around our first user conference - Shruthi wants to drive a monster truck!

What’s next?

I’m pretty excited to see what the next 30 days at Vendia holds. We are working on building out the marketing team (see open roles!) and continue to build our marketing engine.

My two truths and a lie...

  1. I’ve been to every country in Central America.
  2. I had a pet sheep growing up.
  3. I’ve lived in every state on the west coast of the continental US (yes, there’s only 3 but still!).