Tiiu Särkijärvi // April 03 2017
Who is the typical Digitalist?
I have been working at Digitalist in different kind of roles since September 2007. When I was asked “What is the typical Digitalist like?” it still was a difficult question after all these years. Why? My spontaneous thought was that at Digitalist we all are individuals. Everybody’s strengths are different and respected as such, we are not tried to be forced to some ready-made model.
My gut feeling
When I slept overnight and tried to think what we have in common, I came to the conclusion that our individuals quite often have several strong competence areas where we have gained experience: There are combinations like Full stack developer-Most convincing pre-sales consultant in one person, as well as Service manager- Supervisor, Project manager-Process owner or Account manager-Thought leader. And when you get to know your colleagues better, the scale of different skills they perform outside the office hours is wider than you could ever imagine. We have everything from body pump instructors to sailing coaches or performing musicians. Digitalists also seem to have quite sensitive radars: We are closely following what is happening in our own competence areas, we are keen to keep our skills up to date. We always give our support to our fellow Digitalists, and we tend to not only support them but also to challenge them to exceed their own limits and fears, especially when going outside the usual comfort zones. And without this network, would I ever have gone outside of my own cozy core skills area so many times? Would I ever have learned so much? As a company, we are often building something totally new, preparing our customers to the new era, solving future challenges in advance, – and that’s why going unknown paths and somewhere beyond is so important. This is what I think, but the question was if I could find any proof for my gut feeling?
If it is easy, it is boring
Because of being responsible for Internal communications for over a year, I’ve had a privilege to ask the question “What gives your work meaning and purpose?” from one Digitalist every week. I went through most of the answers. The themes that keep repeating were “to face our customer’s challenges and to be able to solve their problems”, “to be able to learn about new industries, technologies and businesses on a weekly basis” and “to be able to work with so competent people every day”. Digitalists seem to love challenges. They keep us going.
What about the data?
In our HRM system a typical Digitalist is competent in technology, design or business administration. This average Digitalist is around 40 years old, but the range of ages varies from people in their 20’s to people over 60. So, every age is the best age, who cares!
What do the customers say?
As Quality Manager I am also the person who sends the customer satisfaction surveys. My next plan was to check if I could find the typical Digitalist from that feedback. Listen to the results from last six months very carefully: According to the surveys a Digitalist seems to be a person who our customers consider enjoyable to work with, is provided with expertise that is valuable for the customers, understands well their expectations and delivers end-results with high quality. As Quality Manager I am doing waves because of my humble respect every time I am reviewing feedback about our people.
After going through all these facts I think I got my gut feeling confirmed. The Digitalist mindset means understanding our customers’ business and industry and how to create value for them. It means being communicative: We are active listeners, really caring about getting the big picture correct, and we use clear phrases, take the lead when needed and convince the customers with our expertise. We appreciate given feedback. We work in collaborative teams where we foster openness and encourage everyone to build on top of other’s ideas. We keep our promises and support each other. We cherish curiosity, open minds and hunger for developing our skills. If you found yourself in this description, maybe you could be the next typical Digitalist. Check our open positions from our Careers page.