Mateja is an ordinary woman accomplishing extraordinary things, as she likes to put it. With a rich experience across various stages of digital product development, from ideation to execution, her passion lies in helping teams find the combination of a customer-centric approach, flexible product development, and entrepreneurship mentality through agile approaches.
Armed with a Ph.D. in Computer Science, she transitioned from academia to the dynamic world of startups and entrepreneurship, where she honed her skills and expertise at Zemanta, Kendu, and EqualEyes, ultimately kindling her passion for product management and engineering. Presently, Mateja finds her professional home at Databox, an American company with Slovenian roots, where she holds the position of Director of Product.
As an advocate for perpetual growth, Mateja passionately explores productivity, mental models, critical thinking, and leadership practices, helping teams foster innovation and achieve their full potential. Leveraging her extensive experience and a commitment to give back to the community, she actively mentors startups, participates in hackathons, webcamps, co-organizes events and other workshops committed to advancing diversity and gender equality within the IT sector and beyond.
The Improvement Movement: Navigating Between Predictability and Flexibility the Agile Way
In the fast-paced world of scale-ups, striking the right balance between predictability and flexibility is crucial for achieving success. On one hand, the bigger the company, the more structure is usually needed for effective functioning, but on the other side, structure and predictability may slow down the pace of innovation, experimenting, and flexibility needed to avoid ending up in the red ocean of cutthroat competition.
We will delve into the dynamics and duality of this challenge by presenting our unique formula: the Improvement Movement. During this session, we will explore the common struggles faced by teams attempting to ensure compliance with rigorous processes and those striving for absolute no-rules autonomy, both of which can hinder strategic company progress and innovation if taken to extremes.
The session will demonstrate how Databox's practical approaches have been instrumental in navigating the ever-changing landscape of product development and engineering. Through the "move + improvise + improve" approach incorporating all four types of diversity - internal, external, organizational, and worldview, we have successfully fostered a culture of continuous improvement, enabling our organization to adapt, innovate, and mature.
- Learn how we found a good balance between predictability and innovation in product and engineering processes.
- Discover practical strategies to promote flexibility while maintaining structure and order.
- Gain insights into fostering a culture of continuous improvement to drive organizational growth and success.