First Day at School

(Peter Benton our product manager describes his experiences of starting with Pisys)

Some things are etched on your mind forever. Like taking your child to their first day of school. The overly-breezy conversations on the journey, all the hysterics and tears as you wave them goodbye at the gate, only to hear them say, “Get a grip, Dad: I’ll be home this afternoon”.

Starting at Pisys was the same, except I didn’t talk much on the way.

But I needn’t have worried. No trauma, no drama. Of course, it takes time to get to know people, but even in those first few days, I had the feeling that everyone was genuinely interested in me as a person.

My overall impression was of quiet efficiency and understated creativity. There is a sense of purpose in the air. There is urgency but no panic. There is order but not rigidity. There is candid discussion, but not point-scoring. There is a focaccia and avocado sandwich in the fridge, but no culprit. For goodness sake.

A new person inevitably brings new ideas and new ways of working, and in some organisations, there is a (quite natural) resistance to change. I have to say that I haven’t found this so far within Pisys. Suggestions are weighed for their contribution and potential, and not looked on with a jaundice based merely on their novelty. In fact, new ideas and perspectives arise naturally among the team and somehow, they seem to get sifted so that the useful ones survive, whilst the weaklings dutifully obey the laws of natural selection.

For an incomer, first meetings with clients are often a telling sign of how an organisation is perceived. Whilst this provides useful information, it also means that there is a degree of trepidation about the experience. But the welcome I had from customers was (to be frank) a dream. Almost all of them were supporters of the products and services that Pisys provide, and I experienced nothing but courtesy and generosity at each visit. This told me something about the quality of the products and the relationships that have been built over the years. And I have amassed quite a debt in terms of cups of tea.

That’s not to say that there aren’t problems and issues, but I do sense a trust, and the willingness of those involved to work the problems in good faith.

It seems to me that trust is an essential, probably the essential, pre-requisite for good business. With trust, most obstacles can be overcome, and trust accelerates and augments progress. Without it, every interaction can be a slog, and a drag appears that reduces efficiency, stymies creativity and fosters disillusionment. My impression is that the value of trust is recognised by Pisys, by its clients and by other stakeholders. Long may this continue.

So, four months in and the rose tints are still on my spectacles. Maybe it’s the glorious summer we’re having, and the winter will yet wash the shine off, but somehow, I don’t think so.

Ask me in February.


Beyond Cyber Essentials
Small beginnings