High Ambition: Tammy’s 2022 Outlook

A blue and white celebratory chocolate.

It’s been a busy beginning of the year at Connected; however, we made sure to take some time to pause and celebrate a successful 2021, the most impactful year in Connected’s history and to kick-off of 2022. When we gathered the team to kick-off the year to collectively align on our 2022 company objectives and KPIs, the overall sentiment amongst Connectors is one of excitement and optimism for the future. Where is this excitement coming from?

To me, it couldn’t be more obvious. 

From building autonomous vehicle software on behalf of one of the world’s leading automakers to creating the flagship app for one of the world’s leading connected fitness brands to developing systems that conduct breakthrough research to advance children’s healthcare globally, we’re privileged to build products that will impact the lives of hundreds of millions users around the world. 

And I am privileged to work with and learn from the diverse and distinguished team that makes that possible every single day. Never have we had more talent, motivation, or diversity to build the next generation of amazing products. 

It’s why I am so full of optimism for 2022 and beyond.

So what got us here?

It was adhering to our methods. Our proven approach to the toughest challenges continues to allow us to write the playbook on product development, and because of it, we have a historic roadmap of innovative products that we’re helping our partners bring to market. And soon, through our certification program launching this year, inspire, teach, and empower them and others like never before. 

I can confidently condense our vision for 2022 down to a single phrase: doubling down on our strengths. That means doubling down on our people, our methods, and our client to continue to build impactful products that people love. 

Doubling Down on Our People

When your mission as a company is to build category-defining products, the story of how you get there begins and ends with your talent. Without exceptional people behind every line of code and every design decision, every product feature and every user experience, we wouldn’t have the reputation for excellence that we do today. 

For that reason, we’re committing ourselves even more to attracting, developing, and retaining the greatest collection of talent that product development has to offer—designers, engineers, strategists, researchers, and beyond.

But I would be kidding myself if I didn’t acknowledge the challenges that lie ahead. Competition for talent has never been more fierce, pandemic-related burnout is high across the globe, and people are quitting or changing jobs like never before

That is why, to address the risks of stress, isolation, and other mental health forces brought on by the pandemic, we recently rolled out a number of wellness-focused initiatives, including no-meeting Tuesday afternoons, mindful mornings for group meditation, and wellness afternoons where we have lunch together as a company with the rest of the day off prior to every long weekend. In the weeks to come, we’ll be rolling out more comprehensive mental health coverage, providing Connectors with even more holistic support for mental well-being, ensuring professional and personal peace of mind. But wellness isn’t all we’re doing.

To continue supporting our talent, we’re unrolling more flexible working models. As many of you know, toward the end of 2021, we proudly announced that we are officially a remote-first company, giving Connectors the freedom to work from home, or at the office, or a mix of both—wherever they can have the most personal and professional impact. By giving people the freedom to choose (rather than by going fully remote or fully on site), we hope to attract and retain the best.

But remote-first is just the beginning. At the beginning of January, we announced the rollout of our Work From Anywhere in Canada and a 90 Day Work Abroad program, giving employees even more autonomy to work where and how they want, and allowing us to draw upon an even wider pool of talent without compromising our standards. 

These are just the latest in a long line of investments back into our talent that we have made over the past few years. Others include a $300 annual home-office credit; 5% salary increase across the board; performance bonus plan for very Connector; $1,000 annual education credit; Connected Playbook certification program; $300 annual health and fitness credit; 5% RRSP matching; a new and improved benefits provider; and an ever-growing list of rituals and practices that make Connected an incredibly rewarding (and award-winning!) place to work.

Above all, it’s the amazing clients we get to partner with and the innovative products and technologies we get to work on that continue to attract top candidates looking for diverse, high-impact, and skill-accelerating work. This leads me to my next point.

Doubling Down on Our Methods 

Our methods, by which I mean our Product Thinking Playbook. 

As a firm matures, it becomes more and more confident in the soundness of its methods, and our playbook is no exception. That’s why this year, and by popular demand, we’ll be launching an external certification program to share our methods and empower product teams to build products that 1. drive business impact, and 2. their customers love. 

We launched an MVP this last year with one of our longest-standing clients, who exclaimed, “With Connected, you not only get a talented team experienced in all stages of building especially early-stage building – you also have a team that expertly navigates ambiguity and builds programs. They exceeded our expectations, delivering a top-notch playbook to help us scale, all the while mentoring and upskilling our teams & partnering with us to build strong products!” 

Our playbook has been our ultimate system of success, and we can’t wait to share it with the broader Product community. We are confident in our principles, methods, and practices like never before. And as we continue to write the playbook on product development, I’m excited to see our thinking ripen even further.

Doubling Down on Our Clients 

Coming into 2022, it’s an honour for Connected to be a trusted partner to some of the world’s most recognizable brands and a privilege to help design and develop dozens of meaningful products, impacting the lives of hundreds of millions around the world.

The best part is we are just getting started. Every year, the quality and calibre of product we build gets bigger and better in part because of the deepening relationships we have with our clients. Building those relationships takes time, and I am excited to continue to deepen these relationships even further in the years to come. 

This is especially true as more and more organizations invest more and more into their digital futures. So many of our clients are doubling down on software-powered products; we are privileged to help them grow and grateful for their continued partnership. 

So here’s to doubling down on our people to develop and grow in career-defining ways, our methods as we step deeper into the great product roadmap that is 2022, and our clients for trusting us with building their products that have shaped the lives of so many.

President, Connected

Tammy Chiasson

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