My girlfriend Irina sent me this delightful video a few days ago, and I remain mesmerized. I’ve watched it several times now – it never fails to crack me up (my favourite part starts after exactly one minute!).
You may rightfully wonder what this performance could have in common with life at our start-up. Well, for one, it’s the buzzing exuberance and enthusiasm we have for our vision of Mendeley and what it could become for the research community. When we’ve imagined, designed and specified a new feature, when there’s progress on our website, when something starts to work for the first time in our software, we go “WOW! How great is THAT! Imagine what a difference it could make if every researcher used this!”.
Then, everything happens at a breakneck pace. You’re trying to coordinate everything as best as you can and plan your next steps, but sometimes you’re still just goofily flailing your arms, juggling the myriad of tasks thrown at you all at the same time. Describe a new website functionality down to the last mouse-click and pixel placement, brainstorm about Mendeley’s strategy, design interfaces in Photoshop, find a new office, talk to beta testers, keep up with the latest research relevant to our technology, wrangle lawyers and legal affairs, find talented developers to hire, visit universities, hunt down the latest software bugs, and that’s just today before lunch.
Admittedly, I know the analogies are flimsy at best – mainly I was just looking for an excuse to smuggle this charming little video into our blog. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I do. On a side-note, Irina and I have decided that we just have to learn to dance Charleston sometime.