If you read my last 2 LinkedIn articles [1, 2]on my entrepreneurial journey at Zebel, you may be thinking of Zebel as just another tech startup with great ambitions to take over the world and build an empire. I don’t blame you if you did think that way, the world map behind us in the picture may have very well signaled that kind of intention and solidified that thought. When I started writing this post, I recalled a quote from the Netflix show, Narcos Mexico. Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo, the head of the Mexican drug cartel looks over a desert where he is going to turn into the largest cannabis farm in the world and says “What I’m doing here…is building an empire”
You may hear most entrepreneurs in the Silicon Valley saying their goal is to “make this world a better place,” but what they really intend to do, or most of the successful ones end up doing, is actually build an empire. That may be true for many entrepreneurs but while we have ambitious goals, we are NOT building an empire.
This article is about what we as a team stand for and believe in. Our team members have lived in different countries and worked at companies of varying sizes from small startups to large corporations in different industries. We’ve seen The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, and have set out to build a different kind of company that belongs in the 21st century, where employees are considered the company itself, not its asset, that gets better everyday, and treats customers as business partners. Zebel is founded on values that we sincerely believe in and cherish.
We believe participating in equity is a right of anyone on the team who contributes to the success and growth of the company, not a privilege exclusive to the leadership team. Unlike common business practices, we do not downgrade our high performance employees to “our most valuable assets” but offer them a path to become owners of the company they dedicate their professional lives to build.
Our org chart is inverted with employees at the top and leadership team at the bottom. We believe employees are at the forefront of our business, get things done, make customers happy, and create value for the company. We are committed to develop and enact policies that ensure everyone receives a fair share of the growth of the company and there will be no absurd economic inequality between the leadership and the rest of the team.
We believe work should be an enjoyable part of life and a rewarding experience, not a burden you wish you didn’t have to carry. We recognize unique contributions of every team member and are committed to accommodate their unique needs.
Zebel was born out of innovation and will continue to innovate. We believe in keeping an open mind to new ideas, always looking for smarter ways to run our business, and continuous innovation. We aspire to beat our strongest competition, “our current version,” and become a better version of ourselves everyday. We seek innovators with inquisitive minds to join our team and keep the startup spirit alive.
We recognize the key role our customers play in our journey. They pioneer the adoption of our products and sponsor our cause to make a long lasting impact in the industry. We would not be able to make progress and achieve our goals without their continued support and trust. Our product development is driven by the real needs of our customers and aims to solve the real problems they face and create maximum value for them.
Stay tuned on what we are building in the next article.