The Maestro Mindset: The Agile

Table of Contents

    The Maestro Mindset is a list of the twelve (12) most important traits we want our team to embody. From the outside looking in, it can be difficult to fully envision what these traits looks like in action. Without the proper framework and perspective, the Maestro Mindset may seem ambiguous or theoretical at first. To further add color and context, we asked some of our team members to highlight tangible examples of how the Maestro Mindset manifests in their day to day.

    Here’s what they had to say about The Agile Maestro Mindset.

    The Meaning of 'Agile'

    I think of it in the literal sense of being able to turn on a dime and run in the opposite direction. In the context of Maestro, the big thing with agility, at least in my role is having a lack of ego and knowing that this is a constantly changing industry and we're also constantly innovating on the product. Therefore, we need to be constantly innovating on the messaging. So if I write a beautiful blog post that I'm like, “this is my Manifesto,” but the product team is like, “actually, we're gonna be marketing screen capture in this completely different way now,” I have to be OK with pivoting and redoing that work. A big part of that is not having an ego over your own work and feeling like you are capable of changing things, iterating, editing, and throwing away work for the greater good.

    Agile to me, comes down to efficiency and speed or how quickly someone works. When they're given a new task, how quickly can that person figure out what the end goal needs to be? How quickly can they figure out the key points of that task as well as the best way to accomplish them in the quickest way possible without sacrificing on quality? Additionally are there any learnings that needs to be done as part of it? For example if there's a new web page that we're looking to build and it features some type of function or technology that I'm not familiar with, I would basically play chess and try to figure out what needs to be done, to accomplish that task.

    Why being Agile Matters

    We are in a startup space that is constantly evolving. From the time I came on as an SDR at Maestro about a year and a half ago, we’ve been constantly evolving. Now the product that we sell is pretty much entirely different from the product that I was pitching back then as an SDR. So because those changes are happening, it's important to be agile to be able to adapt to those changes.

    A lot of what we do is based on customer research and really understanding our customers. Just really iterating quickly and getting that feedback from customers. And I think one thing that we do really well compared to other companies is that we are trying to get better information consistently. Being agile is part of making sure that we're reacting to the best information possible and whatever the best information is, is changing from day to day by the hour.

    What Agile Looks Like

    If I'm doing any sort of product marketing, I'll create a whole web page on the KPI dashboard, and then three days later, Robby will tell me that we developed this entirely new thing. We are in constantly in update mode and constantly shifting. That all comes back to the product team, and the product team is listening to the industry at large and what our customers are looking for, what our potential customers are looking for, and what breakthroughs in technology are available.

    It's changing up sales tactics to be in line with whatever's top of mind for people like Vasu and Jon at the moment. As an example, our trial motion, how and when we bring customers into trial before they buy the things that we're focusing on now are different than what we were focusing on a month ago. Vasu takes in a ridiculous amount of customer data and then spits answers back out to the rest of the team. So agile for me in the day to day would be changing up my demo script, trial script, and overall just how I'm communicating with customers based on whatever Vasu sees as being most successful from all the research that he's doing.

    In the broader Maestro environment, we take a very customer-focused approach. A lot of other teams have that same kind of agile mindset in terms of we change what we do, depending on what's going to make our customers most happy. On the sales side of things, it's obviously before they become a customer and getting them to become a customer. But then on the broader team, i’s the same mindset, but just applying that to keeping customers happy and making sure that they're excelling and being successful within Maestro.

    It’s building pages in a way that I'm able to spin up future pages quicker without having to build everything from scratch every single time. I'm able to reuse certain classes and layouts that saves me time so I can get more done, quicker.

    In the general Maestro environment, it is spinning up things quickly for customers faster than other startups. If people are used to a general tech company or corporate company, they're used to working slowly. They're able to screw around and be distracted in general. But when it comes to Maestro, you really have to hustle, focus and get work done. We're not like any other startup. We're trying to be the best. So you have to keep your head down and work fast and hard.

    It’s being prepared for a change in not only the content of what I'm working on but the actual projects that I'm working on. It looks like being prepared to drop something and go to the next thing if it's a higher priority and having that mindset of not being attached to any one thing.

    In the broader Maestro environment it looks like continuously seeking out better information and feedback on what we're doing. We're reacting to our product in the real world rather than reacting to our idea of what it does or how well it works.

    Why we Love Agile Teams

    There is a lack of ego, because there's an agreement between all of us. Also it keeps things interesting. The content doesn't get stale because we're not just repeating ourselves over and over again.

    We give each other energy. When everyone's hustling and pushing each other to be better, we build off each other. It’s like being on a sports team.You're all working towards this end goal and you're not afraid of the competition.

    People are open to change and not stuck in their ways. We'll do something and even if it doesn't work, we don't dwell on it. Instead we’ll find a way to keep fixing things and improving them and iterating until it does work. We're never stuck on a certain path. We can actually get better results by not being decisive but instead being open to changing circumstances.

    Examples of being Agile

    There was a trial play Daniel Walsh ran with a mock customer. He pulled up all the metrics they were focused on at that time. He asked them to share what they liked or didn’t like about those metrics and in an ideal future world, what other metrics would they have to supplement them. This strategy worked really well. We won the deal. Within a week, Vasu wanted other sales folks to be doing the same thing because if it worked once it might work again. The effects of it? Still to be determined.

    Starting out I was doing about one to two pages a week. In my third month at Maestro, my team and I came together and we pushed out four or five pages in one week. Everything in the stars aligned. We had a webinar page and a few different product pages. Haley, myself, and Lauren really pushed through to knock them out. Haley did a great job of coming up with the general idea of the pages and then I came in, polished them up, and then coded them out and developed them.

    A good example of being agile is how we've been handing our performance dashboard. It’s become a core feature of our product, branching out from something that was really an experiment at first. The scope of the feature and what it did and who it was for changed and expanded pretty quickly as it started to gain traction and form a vision around it rather than going with what the original intention was.

    I’d say the result is that we're continuing to invest and expand. It’s a sign of success when we see early signs of adoption with customers like Draftkings and even Wealth Simple begin to pilot it.

    Final Words

    Our team has a deep understanding and acknowledgment that as with all things, balance is important. We do not simply make changes, for the sake of it. If decisions are made to pivot, it is usually backed with deep research that supports that change. We operate with the mindset of not being overly attached to a task or an outcome. We are flexible. We are agile. And that's how we compete.

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