Widen Enterprises Inc. builds software that empowers organizations to create compelling, meaningful and measurable digital experiences.
Its digital asset management platform serves more than 450,000 people at more than 600 brands globally. The 72-year-old Madison-based firm employs 160 people.
How do you keep your team focused on Widen’s goals and mission?Teams use an objective key results model to set their quarterly goals. Teams map their quarterly goals to the annual focus areas and continuously update progress on those goals throughout the quarter. We continue to message and explore the best way to realize our 2032 vision of becoming the most admired organization in the world. One element of this is revenue growth and the other is to be studied in business schools throughout the world as a case study for good growth. By frequently communicating this, more people opt into our vision and help us realize it.
How do you inspire confidence in the direction of your company? Transparency leads to accountability and the combination of those two principles give people confidence in our direction. Sometimes things don’t go as we planned, but as long as we are communicating properly and taking proper ownership, we can continue to build confidence. We’re proudly imperfect. Employees know exactly where the company stands. I lead weekly standups, discussing everything from budgeting, financials, competitive intelligence, market information, and customer wins/losses. Employees are welcome to sit in on other department meetings to learn technical direction, product vision, or customer activities.
Creativity is a necessary part of your work. How do you strike that creative spark and stimulate new ideas?Creativity is about understanding the boundaries and working within the constraints of those boundaries to optimize the outcome. If the boundaries are too tight, too many things are prescribed. If the boundaries are too loose, there is too much confusion about how it connects. We operate on a pendulum setting forth a freedom-centered structure consisting of purpose, vision, values, brand, and strategy. Creativity is unleashed through this structure, although we still navigate the gray area between rigidness and flexibility. As Orson Welles stated, “the enemy of art is the absence of limitations.”
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