5 days | 6 minutes

Meet our new VP Engineering

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We’re always excited when we welcome a new colleague on board. But every now and then we are truly over the moon. For example, when we manage to fill one of the most important positions in our company: that of VP Engineering. With Steven Noels as the new beacon for the Engineering team, the future looks extremely bright. We sat down with Steven and talked about his first months at Teamleader and his (ambitious) plans for the future.

*** Want to join Steven's Engineering team? Explore our Engineering vacancies here. ***


Hi Steven! Can you say in one sentence what your previous job entailed?

S: Sure. As the CTO of an enterprise software vendor I was responsible for the team that built and delivered the software and provided related implementation services, from architecture over development to QA and support.

How did you know Teamleader was the right choice?

S: I wanted to be part of a Winning Team again. I felt Teamleader was a Winner, with 12K customers and YoY growth, but also I felt it being a true Team, with a group of individuals jelling around a common spirit of can-do and shared growth and learning. Then, the day I joined we immediately ran into a technical issue and I saw everyone in my team rallying together, focused on the one common goal of reinstating great service to our customers. It all came together: a winning team obsessed with customer success.

What is the most important learning of your career so far? How do you apply that learning in your job?

S: Never stop learning. Most and foremostly about technology of course, and the many skills in our engineering craftsman trade. But also about myself, about my own challenges and growth opportunities, about the importance of quiet and stubborn perseverance - iterative small changes, patience and true empathy. I think social awareness and soft skills are what truly matter as a team leader and working with young(er) teams, so I try to spend a lot of time working on that people side, as much as I'm a tech geek at heart.



How did you experience the first two months at Teamleader?

S: Never a dull day :) There's leading my teams and working with Product, HR, Management and Leadership. And hiring! Lots of plates to keep spinning but the flow and variety of things keep me energized and positive. I'm over the moon being able to join people at our offices again and I've already developed a strong dependency on our phenomenal kitchen team.

How do you like working with the Engineering team so far? Any initial findings?

S: It would be dishonest trying to cover up the challenges we had during COVID keeping the team spirit and culture alive. But we survived and now are starting a phase of culture reboot, supported by the team but also by the surrounding organization and us, the management. So while morale is impacted and needs more tender loving care, I'm still and always pleasantly surprised in finding great maturity and commitment towards each other and the company in the engineering teams, and also - very positively - a certain willingness to embrace change as a fact of life. I am truly grateful for every person in the team and feel very responsible to take good care of the team as a whole.

What do you see as the biggest challenge for the Engineering team today? And for Teamleader in general?

S: On the company level, we need to focus on continuous YoY growth because that's what keeps our blood warm and flowing. We need to tackle new territories successfully. For the engineering team, we need to focus on planned maintenance work to keep our codebase under control, to support our company on its mission and to step up to the next level on an architecture for the future.

How will you help Teamleader meet these challenges?

S: I'm all in, with little ego. I'm here to support the team and to give the team a face and voice in the organization. I'm here to challenge our engineers on their individual growth opportunities, on how we collaborate, but also to keep the company and its leadership honest about our technical challenges, making sure we get the people that are needed to get the job done.

Finally, being an early riser, it helps that most of my focus work is done well before meeting mayhem kicks in. I figure that helps myself in helping Teamleader.

Thanks for your time, Steven. And good luck!