Leadership principles at Speechify

At Speechify, leadership is not giver, it is earned. Everyone can develop into a leader - they come in all shapes and seize and use different languages, tools, and incentives to create great outcomes. At Speechify, we hire for and cultivative the following attributes in particular.

Our mission is to make sure reading is never a barrier to learning for anyone

Extreme Product Quality

  • We are world-class in our attention to detail. We believe that the difference between good technology and great technology is all in the details. We always want to make great technology.
  • We maintain extremely high standards. From the codebase to the product experience we acknowledge that quality is not a one-and-done, it requires consistent application and maintenance.
  • We constantly dogfood our own products. Our bias to action means that we are always innovating, We are our own most passionate focus group when it comes to product quality.

Speed

  • We have an extreme bias to action. We prefer to make a choice and fail quickly rather than stay mired in procrastination or indecision.
  • We understand that speed is critical for success. We believe we have the best product in the market and we want it to stay that way. We never rest on our laurels.
  • We take calculated risks. Innovation means doing something that has not been done before. If we can accommodate the potential downside, we will take a small risk.

Deliver Results

  • We are numbers driven. Every team member at Speechify owns a KPI. We understand the importance of that metric towards the ultimate mission.
  • We focus on high leverage problems. Speechify is all about working smarter not harder. So we look for the most efficient places to invest our energy.

Leading with Love

  • We always think of ways to improve the lives of our teammates, stakeholders, & customers. We spend a lot of our lives at work, so we want it to be something we can feel good about.
  • We treat others with respect and care. If in a small period of time we can significantly improve someone else’s life, we do it.

Frugality

  • We accomplish more with less. Our frugality helped us survive through leaner times, it guarantees a future lifespan of the company and leaves us more budget for innovation in serving customers.
  • We understand the constraints breed resourcefulness, self-sufficiency, and invention. Important decisions don’t necessarily come with big budgets.

Customer Obsession

  • We work backward from customers. It takes a little imagination to put yourself in the customer’s shoes, but it’s worth it every time.
  • We pay attention to competitors but obsess over customers. We like to win, but the things we work hardest to beat are our customer’s expectations.

Ownership

  • We take control over each problem. If we see a problem, we aim to fully own it and reduce delegating the solution.
  • We don’t sacrifice long-term value for short-term results. We want our business to last, so we build for the long term.
  • We act on behalf of the company (and our team) rather than just ourselves. The best result is the one where the team wins. This is always more important than ego-gratification.

Always be Hiring

  • We recognize that a company is by definition a collection of people. Tallent is a bell curve. Top performers are more than twice as good as the merely good. It’s worth taking the time to find the best.
  • We bring great people together to do cool stuff. Whatever the problem, our ability to solve it depends on having the right people in the conversation. If we find someone who is good-hearted, hardworking and learns fast, we can find a job for them.

Reducing Scope

  • We start simple and test first. Everything starts with testing a minimal viable product (MVP). When an MVP proves itself valuable, we can double down and build in a robust manner.
  • We live by the 80/20 principle. In any given situation, 80% of the output is determined by only 20% of the input. We optimize our time based on impact.