Little Fires Everywhere, and Everything About Ops
By Maya Gurarie
Startups maximize productivity by using operations professionals such as operation managers, human resources, legal, finance, and sales. Ops can also mean failing, learning hard lessons, and trying again. Fintech and Operations expert Alex d’Annunzio works at a London-based startup. He’ll manage the Ops track during Boulder Startup Week (BSW) from May 10-14.
“You’ll get to meet lots of really friendly English people. It’s a great opportunity for you to learn from us, and for us to learn from you with a broad range of Ops experience,” said d’Annunzio, the Product Performance Lead at Onfido.
While working at Onfido, d’Annunzio joined a group called Ops Stories. Members meet every month to give each other feedback and participate in roundtables about operations. Networking groups such as these provide valuable information and connections about processes that empower people to perform well.
The incredible thing about BSW is that it can be both local and international at the same time. With his Ops background, d’Annunzio coordinated an amazing workshop in London about juggling competing priorities. He’d like to replicate that experience by hosting a session for BSW as well titled, “How to Pick Your Battles When There are Little Fires Everywhere.” This will be a collaborative session where people learn to prioritize goals based on what’s going on in their company. This session is for anyone who has tried to scale quickly and experienced growing pains in their startup.
Sessions in the Ops track will demonstrate how to implement a process that sticks. The key to starting a successful process is mapping out a startup’s future state and how that relates to its current state. D’Annunzio recommends taking into account how employees fit into that roadmap.
“The hardest thing to do is work with people—to mold your company process and work with people. You can have a dream process, but it won’t work if you don’t have people behind it,” said d’Annunzio.
Another session in the Ops Track centers on How To Ensure That The New Processes Stick. for Ops managers. Change management is hard. Operations professionals are constantly creating new pathways forward for the organization. Learn how to ensure your new processes are successfully established.
Finally, managing operations for a growing startup can be a wild ride. Remembering to take a step back and look at the bigger picture can provide long-term rewards.
“It can be easy to get distracted by the noise, but prioritize what’s important. Dealing with lots of things bubbling up isn’t a bad thing. When you’re growing quickly, you can’t always get it right,” said d’Annunzio.