Q: How do you ensure alignment with your clients?
CJ: It starts with being accountable and having a stake in our client’s success; what Warren Buffet once referred to as “skin in the game.” We organize all of our operations around assuring our client’s success.
One such way we align value is by offering a pricing model that allows our clients to more closely pay for what they receive (actual delivered value) vs what they are promised (time & talent). We call it “pay per sprint” and it is our commitment to delivering value in each sprint based on a collaborative planning process with buy-in from both the client and Forte.
Of course, there are many other ways we align with clients, but the most important way is having a value mindset. Once you have that mindset, everything else changes for the better.
Q: How does engineer empowerment play into value-driven partnerships?
CJ: We are an organization for engineers by engineers and see it essential to establish engineers’ voice within our organization, particularly towards the betterment of our client engagements.
I often say that “engineers are people too” because the market tends to commoditize engineers and reduce them to a single dimension; generators of code or some simple output that is out of context and not necessarily tied to the value proposition of the product they are creating.
The people in an organization who understand this problem the best – and are directly impacted by it – are the engineers. So we ask our engineers how to solve these problems and then trust and support them in their journey. It not only creates an ownership mentality, we find that it gives purpose to our engineers who realize they are contributing to something useful.
Q: How does engineer empowerment benefit your organization?
CJ: By spotlighting our engineers’ voices, we show how deeply aligned everyone is within our company culture. Everyone plays an essential role in achieving success together, from entry-level employees to senior staff members. This is why establishing and amplifying the voice of engineers in any organization is crucial. It helps showcase their technical expertise and promotes alignment with organizational goals.