We believe that focus and clarity are important enablers of high-velocity execution. OP1 ensures that there is always one DRI (Directly Responsible Individual) for every project.
The DRI takes full responsibility and accountability to drive the initiative to success. Our teams then mobilise to build support around the DRI.
OP1 enables us to bring a ruthless level of focus and discipline to every project that we get behind. It also enables teammates to take on real responsibility with real accountability.
In the years ahead, some of the most talented leaders within our business will be cultivated through our own ranks. Our goal is to build our organisations as social institutions that constantly invest in developing talent in-house.
We believe that developing talent in-house requires a set of systematic processes that enable teammates to grow with the business. From onboarding and goal-setting to MORs and performance reviews, our goal is to cultivate leaders in-house.
We believe that the starting point of a new teammate’s experience with us sets the foundation for their personal development. We plan to be highly selective in recruitment and then to over-invest in teammates at the time of their joining.
Through rigorous management training programs and internal processes, we ensure that managers are setting and documenting clear expectations. We believe that clear expectation-setting drives results.
On a monthly cadence, many of our teammates participate in and drive MORs with our C-Level team. By design, as discussion forums, MORs create a learning forum and help build bridges across various levels of the organisation.
At the end of every quarter, detailed performance reviews need to read as “growth pathways” for teammates on the receiving end. Performance reviews are designed to identify superpowers and encourage teammates to double down on their strengths.
At Apollo, we believe that speed of execution is often one of the biggest determinants of success. By moving quickly, we believe that the best companies are able to manufacture their own luck.
In order to manufacture speed, we believe that teams need to over-invest on the front end of processes. By spending a lot of time on getting the direction right, teams can move much faster than would otherwise be possible.
In building processes, products and organisational infrastructure, we need to be relentless in finding capital efficient ways of doing things.
Internally, we measure capital efficiency by dividing our annualised EBITDA with the total capital invested. We believe that a ratio of 20:1 of annualised EBITDA over capital invested is impressive.
With capital efficiency as a measuring yardstick for our company-level performance, we find that teams tend to think and execute in fundamentally different ways.
At the macro level, we are optimists. If we follow the right process, listen to our customers, and ship rapid iterations of our product, we view success as the logical outcome. We believe that getting the inputs right will get us to the desired outcomes.
At a micro level, we are pessimists. We like to challenge our thinking, question our beliefs and play devil's advocate at low levels of detail. We believe that this approach helps us build high-quality products, processes and teams.
We believe that solving problems is most effective when we limit the surface area. On a limited surface area, we can run rapid experiments, measure results very clearly, and iterate quickly.
Scaling our solutions requires a fundamentally different approach. When we think about scale, we rely less on experiments and more on capital-efficient ways of doing things that are highly replicable.
Autonomy is a defining characteristic of early-stage environments. We love to create an environment in which teammates can self-select themselves into projects, goals and execution sprints. We believe that people are able to do their best work when they have autonomy.
Alongside autonomy, however, we believe that having strong internal structures is what enables us to create an autonomous environment. Strong internal structures are found in having an advanced level of clarity around who owns decisions, the guiding principles shall inform various types of decisions, and having rigorous mechanisms to measure desired outcomes.
In our world of high-velocity execution, our requirements and environments change very quickly. In response to evolving situations, we must constantly adjust the sails and adapt our thinking.
At Apollo, leaders and people managers are charged with the important mandate of being change-makers. As an early-stage startup, the right way to do things today is not the recommended path for tomorrow. It is, therefore, imperative that everything we do stays in a constant state of iteration and adaptation.
As an early-stage startup, our bets need to be heavily concentrated in the right areas. We view focus as a critical pre-requisite to our success. When we pursue new ideas or ways of doing things, it needs to be paired with high-quality thinking and decision-making.
At Apollo, whenever we propose an idea for a new feature and/or a different way to solve a given problem, we require teammates to propose the most likely reason for why it may not work. This helps us build risk management into our core operating DNA.