March 8th marks International Women’s Day, where women are globally recognized and celebrated for their achievements. Although there are many successes that women have accomplished economically, politically and socially, we wanted to highlight a few particular individuals in the arts, culture and mental health space. This year’s IWD campaign theme is #BeBoldForChange, and it’s clear that the following women have made bold actions in their fields to foster inclusion and gender-balanced leadership.
I suspect that 2016 will be remembered as a year of significant change… for lots of reasons. We are no different. As I reflect on 2016, the first term that comes to mind is ‘change’. Change always presents businesses unique opportunities to adapt to better serve their customers. In our case, we changed in three significant ways:
We became a B-Corp.
We focused on our impact areas.
We saw a change in our ownership.
Recently, an article appeared in the London Free Press stating that businesses in London don’t want light rail. A few of us in the tech community wanted to state that clearly not all businesses are against light rail. As businesses in the technology sector (with over 1,000 open jobs currently), we know how important it is to be able to attract and retain talent.
The only thing that is constant is change.” - Heraclitus
The rtraction brand was not supposed to live long. We inherited it from vtraction, one of our founding partners. It was a temporary company name put in place to give life to our startup. We started in 2001, after the dot-com bust, as tech companies were crumbling. At the time, survival was higher on our priority list. We figured we could always rebrand, right?
London’s tech sector continues its exciting evolution with a strategic partnership between Engine SevenFour and FreePoint™ Technologies. Engine SevenFour (a division of rTraction Canada, Inc.) develops custom enterprise web applications, while FreePoint Technologies specifically creates productivity improvement software for manufacturing.
In early 2013, I was hired specifically by rTraction to help on a big new project for a Fortune 100 client. It was a from-scratch B2B web application for our client’s critical internal use, and we needed a framework. I was coming from a Zend Framework Version 1.x background, and I wasn't a fan of how it let you do anything 10 different ways: it meant that figuring out "the right way" was nearly impossible, because there wasn't one. The learning curve was steep, and I wanted something that would be easier to get people up to speed on. The rest of the team had some experience with CodeIgniter, but mostly Drupal and Wordpress, so I started hunting around.
... was a frustrating year for me because our story was stuck in an uncomfortable place. Actually, we were literally stuck in an uncomfortable space as our new office was yet to be completed and our temporary space was terrible. Soul-killing, team-killing, productivity-killing, terrible. We were producing excellent work and things were going well on the business side of things but our culture and our team development felt like it was on pause.