Being fast and lean was important to us, so I spent time reading about lean principles in books like Selling the Invisible, which explains why speed of service and speed of acting are so important. I had also been recommended Delivering Happiness, which is about creating a happy culture and a profitable business.
On top of this reading list, I looked at the values of companies like Basecamp, MailChimp, Atlassian, InVision, who were kind of ‘breaking the rules’ back then, in terms of not really sticking to the status quo and to the typical way companies had been built before. A lot of these were either bootstrapped, capital-efficient, or remote, so I knew we had something in common.
Of course, I had to remind myself that Hotjar was still really, really small. Values that inspire hundreds of people in a big organization might not make sense for a tiny group of people who are putting in hard work to survive. It’s a big mistake I’ve seen before: small companies get carried away with inspiration and then end up with these fluffy, amazing-sounding values… that mean nothing to the team.