A New Year Reflection

fireworksIt’s the end of 2015 and a good time to look back and look forward. This year Sparv has grown from a one-man operation to engaging about six persons to varying degree. We sure have come a long way during 2015. One side of our mission is to develop our weather measurement product Windsond. This has been our main focus. The other part of our mission is consulting in embedded sensor systems, were we also had success. Our Windsond customer base has grown a lot which allows new development. Read more about it on the Windsond blog.

We now move to a bigger office, still in the very center of Linköping. The old office could house a maximum of three persons and we’ve increasingly been three or even four persons there. Together with a growing stock of equipment and supplies it’s about time to move! The bigger office also enables us to take on student thesis projects and interns.

Naturally, not everything about launching a company is easy. Most new companies fail and there are many good reasons for that. There are challenges every day, like doing the best of limited money, understanding the market and solving technical issues under time pressure. With tasks as diverse as negotiating prices, buying furniture, working on the company strategy and arranging an afterwork, it can be hard to focus on the main idea to develop great hardware and software. You can never do “enough” and finding the time to write blog posts is a luxury.

Above all, building a company takes perseverance. When your big attempt fails, what will make you try again using another approach? For me, its a strong strive to bring all great product ideas to life. I’m convinced we can build great things, be economically sustainable and have lots of fun doing it.

The change in roles is a large step from being a developer but not fundamentally different. Software developers envision a piece of software, then deal with the mechanisms to make it real. Often the process involves learning a lot of protocols, libraries, algorithms etc since every new project requires different building blocks from the excessively wide range that technology offers.

Building a company is the same thing. The difference is, the building blocks of a company are people: people buy and use your products and people develop and manufacture those products. While technological prowess is a given requirement for tech companies, managing relations is the means of building the company. That is a bigger learning curve than new pieces of technology.

For 2016, we continue with the two-pronged approach of developing weather measurement systems and offering our consulting services in battery-powered embedded sensor systems. With more employees, better facilities, better understanding of the market and the technology and a bigger budget, 2016 will surely bring many great experiences and milestones for Sparv Embedded. I’m really looking forward to it!