On my Interim CTO page I mention some of the issues that companies can have that having someone in an Interim CTO position can solve. In this article I want to talk about where I think I can provide value as a London based Interim CTO.
One of the reasons I love London is the energy that the tech scene has here. There are so many people who are excited to learn and try new things. As a result there are a lot of companies.
This is fantastic, and I hope it never changes.
One of the issues with lots of these young companies starting up in the various tech hotbeds in London (Shoreditch being the go-to example) is that they are just that, young.
Young companies haven’t made the same mistakes that an older company has made, and hasn’t had to go through the tech based growing pains you encounter once you are suddenly too big to fit on the free plan of any web service.
What has this got to do with London? And more importantly, what does it have to do with Interim CTO positions in London? I’m glad you asked!
London is a very expensive place to be doing business. Office space is at a premium and there always seems to be a company just that little bit more lean than you are, able to do things just that little bit faster or that little bit cheaper.
Because of this, it isn’t a very forgiving place to do business. If you go under you will soon get swallowed up and forgotten about as 3 other businesses take your place.
If you were based in a cheaper part of the UK (in Northern Ireland, for example) you would find it a lot more financially forgiving. Of course you would miss out on the networking and community that being based in London can provide.
London based Interim CTOs
If you agree with me that London has fantastic energy and enthusiasm and also agree that the cost of doing business is high. Then hopefully you will follow my next statement.
You need someone that will help guide you from making the decisions that will sink your business, whilst keeping the energy in your company high.
Lots of CTOs are fantastic technically, in fact I am sure many are more technically gifted than I will ever be. But technical ability only gets you so far before you see diminishing returns on it. You need someone who is incredibly technically competent but will not suck the life out of the room.
Unfortunately I’ve seen this happen before. A new manager will come in and shake things up in entirely the wrong way. It may save the company money in the short term, but if people don’t like working under the new manager you are going to have long term problems.
London is big, but news in the tech community travels fast. If your company is earmarked as having poor leadership you are going to have a hard time attracting talented folk to help create and maintain your product.
Working with someone like me, who is already in London means you don’t need to pay to get someone to travel in, and I can use my network in London to help introduce you to folk who could potentially help your business even more.
What makes you think people like working under you?
You can check my LinkedIn profile for some recommendations from previous folk who worked under me, here are some quotes;
he fully supported me from the day one. He is a great developer and even better leader. I never expected that I can grow so much during 2 years period that we worked together. I would recommend Toby to any leadership or dev role.
He was an amazing mentor for me and I learnt plenty of things with him. I cannot thank him enough for that
Toby has been fantastic to work along side. Always pro-active and looking not just for ways to do his job well but also to improve other company systems, from a simple keyboard short cut to a new process implementation entirely. Always approachable, full or ideas and a great team player
VP of Creative
You may wonder why I am not writing an article suggesting you should give me a salary to come and solve your technical and people issues. I cover this in better detail in my main Interim CTO post but the short answer is because for smaller companies you don’t need a full time CTO, and it would be dishonest of me to suggest you do.
Will you only help us if we are in London?
I am based in West London and will travel onsite anywhere within London. If you are outside of London but would like to bend the ear of someone with my type of experience, we should still talk. I offer my skills remotely as well as in person.