A tribe called VEED: How our bootstrapped startup became the global scale-up to join in 2022

Code’s Not a Competition (Which is Why We’re Winning)

From the very first email exchange I shared with our CTO Tim while interviewing, he made it clear: “we have a no-blame culture, instead encouraging enthusiasm and making mistakes.”

Pairing up with Stan
Cross continental virtual tours now given free of charge. 👩‍💻🌎👨‍💻
Coding with VEED’s female engineers and London’s best IPAs
Brewing quality code with Josy and Sandy in London

Greater together than the sum of our parts

At VEED, we make it a point to look beyond the sum of a person’s product or the output of their specific role. We ask ourselves: how can this person contribute — not just to what we need to grow our bottom line, but our community as a whole?

Getting sorted into our coding ‘house’
I identify with the house that kicks down the door. 😂

Carving a Slice of that (Product) Pie

When I started, I was the sole engineer working on our Screen and Webcam Recorder. As breakout roles go, it was a lot of responsibility, and I had to work largely independently through a complex, yet-to-be-optimized technical ecosystem. We were still small, with a limited budget for hiring more experienced devs to take the lead on all our features.

recorder redesign comparison
Big changes from the initial recorder redesign
VEED Open house graffiti class
Painting the town VEED during the October open house

Psychological Safety and Emotional Fearlessness

This isn’t to say we don’t trip up. We’re still a pretty young company, developing processes and learning what works. This occasionally includes who we hire, how we manage people, and what we communicate. Sometimes it’s learning how to tell your team that someone will no longer be working with the company. Or deciding how to brainstorm tough questions, like why code isn’t being shipped faster. Sometimes it’s making and sticking to workflow pipelines, keeping the direction of product development consistent from dev all the way to CEO.

  1. I was a stakeholder in the future of the company, and as such was able to feel confident in articulating the role I wanted to play.
  2. A strong bond of trust had been gradually established over time through collaboration, friendship, and VEED’s overall approach to work, described previously.
  3. That trust made it easier to assume best intentions — whatever it was that I felt, it wasn’t caused by purposeful exclusion or ill feelings, but limited resources, inexperience and (at worst) perhaps some level of thoughtlessness.
  4. Trust also made it easier to feel safe psychologically to work around any imposter syndrome and occasional feelings of unworthiness. In previous conversations providing feedback or asking questions (technical and cultural), I was taken seriously, so experience dictated that was the likeliest outcome.
  5. Being valued for both my technical and emotional intelligence meant I could conceptualize this was an opportunity not just for Stefo to help me, but also for me to help Stefo. We were both in the process of starting something new, and while he could help me become a better developer, I could also help him become a better PM.
If the table moves, move with it fortune cookie
Grogu knows best.

A Tribe Called VEED

As this rounds out, I’m heading back to New York, flying home from a quick stint in Florida. Four of us — Sandy, Stefo, Diana (our Head of Content, living in Fort Lauderdale) and I had planned to meet there Saturday evening, but on Friday at 5 PM, I found out my Saturday morning flight had been canceled. In a whirlwind I snagged a last minute flight for later that evening. Diana welcomed me into her home at 1 A.M. that night, and we stayed up talking like middle school kids until crashing around 3:30. Sandy flew in from Toronto the next day and we met Stefo for dinner off a 10 hour flight from Belgrade. The next day, Sandy and I headed to the Keys, and spent four days camping on the beach before flying back together to New York to ride out the winter.

Meeting up in Miami
The tribe takes Miami

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Stacey Eliuk

Stacey Eliuk

Software engineer by way of public service working with the full stack. Yogi & traveler. Karaoke & outdoor enthusiast.