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Dig In Episode 36 | Paul Teshima @ Wealthsimple on Startups that ‘Fail’, Rocket Ship Growth & Building Happy Teams

In this week’s episode of Dig In, we chat to Paul Teshima, the Chief Client Experience Officer at Wealthsimple about startups that ‘fail’, rocket ship growth & building happy teams.

We’re so excited to share this week’s episode of Dig In where we chat to Paul Teshima, the Chief Client Experience Officer at Wealthsimple. In his role, Paul leads the client success, operations, portfolio management and Work teams. And he’s got a crazy cool background, previously co-founder and CEO at Nudge (acquired by Affinity in 2020) and a founding team member at Eloqua, which grew from $0 to over $100 million in revenue, IPO-ed, and was acquired by Oracle for a cool $957 million.

Tune it to learn:

  • What it was like to join Wealthsimple, and how that’s changed in the last 8 months

  • The key challenges and opportunities that Paul is wrestling with in Wealthsimple’s category

  • How Paul and his team approach recruitment and keeping employees happy and fulfilled

  • How Paul would boil down the lessons he learned at Eloqua and Nudge

  • What Paul learned from a ‘failed’ startup (not quite a failure, in our eyes, very much his words!)

  • How Paul uses his previous experiences at Nudge and Eloqua to be a better leader at Wealthsimple

If you’re keen to understand how someone like Paul thinks about business growth, starting a business, and perhaps most important, retaining high-functioning teams, tune into this episode!

A Few Highlights From the Episode:

Ian: What were some of the biggest challenges that you had to overcome when you first arrived at Wealthsimple that you had to keep up? 

Paul: Well, I think there's a couple of things. Having gone through two different startups with different outcomes, I've developed a bit of a thick skin through adversity. So through this process, I try to break it down, and maybe it's on my engineering schooling, to break it down to the parts that we could manage and what we could control. And I think one of the hardest things is, and this is in all services type organizations, is this idea of "How quickly do you hire versus maintain a certain quality process in getting those hires?" because it's that balance that really is going to make a difference for the client that they're talking to.

And for us, it was really challenging because we were so behind and there were so many clients on board, we couldn't hire fast enough. Everyone in the entire team, including myself, were doing front line single call interviews and then making decisions. So we get these people in the door and get them trained and get them helping our clients.

And I remember one time when things were getting really rough and we were not getting the clients fast enough, our CEO was asking me, “Do we slow things down? Do we not let new clients join the platform because our service levels in responding to them are bad?” And I said to him, “You know what? The most interesting thing if you take a step back and think about context is only one in eight new customers ever call us. And so seven customers are getting the benefit of our platform without any problems, any need to talk to our support organization. And so why would we turn off the ability for them to do that?” And so that was kind of the guiding Northstar for us through that tough time. And we managed to get through it by focusing on getting the right people in as fast as we could, but knowing that most of our clients were still having a great experience.

Find the rest of the episode here.

If you connect with Paul, reach out to him on LinkedIn.

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