As a sales leader at AppDynamics, the last 6.5 years have been amazing for me professionally. Over these past 6+ years, I have been able to be part of an amazing journey, building a small company to disrupt a market filled with legacy competitors. The results speak for themselves - we more than doubled every single year, got acquired for a record multiplier, and today, AppDynamics leads the charge in a 35-year old hardware company’s software transformation. The best part? We did all that while working with the greatest colleagues and customers in the world.
With such an exciting and fulfilling time at AppDynamics, I knew it would take something seriously special to get me to take the plunge again. If a new opportunity presented itself, I always told myself I would evaluate it on three criteria: The Existing Market, Timing, and People.
When I first heard of ThoughtSpot, I was intrigued. Now, as I join ThoughtSpot as the VP of EMEA, I firmly believe this company checks all three boxes.
Large, Existing Market
When I joined AppDymamics in early 2013, Application Performance Management existed in the likes of CA, HP, Dynatrace, OpNet, OpTier, and more. Analysts and customers alike said it was a crowded space that did not need another vendor. However, while the idea of APM existed, it had a few massive downfalls in the new digital world. These legacy vendors could not scale, were difficult to use, and could not run reliably in business-critical production environments. AppDynamics was able to do these three things better than anyone in the market. The rest is history.
From my perspective, the existing business intelligence space bears a lot of similarity to the APM space of 2013. The market is saturated with vendors with many customers and well-known brands.
However, in today’s world where data is more valuable than oil, these vendors struggle in three major areas as well.
- They have not democratized the access to data as promised. Today less than 25% of employees access their data due to reports taking too long to produce or data being too difficult to access.
- They are drowning in the digital deluge. With platforms built before the era of cloud, IoT, and mobile, they have not been able to handle the mass amount of data that organizations are creating, to say nothing of producing granular insights from that in seconds.
- They’ve failed to help business users ask the right questions. The existing vendors have never been able to help organizations find answers to questions that they never even thought of asking by using AI or machine learning.
ThoughtSpot is well positioned to help organizations in all of these areas, making the company the logical leap for enterprises ready for the next big thing in analytics.
It’s not enough to have the right approach to disrupt a market - you have to time it right. We live in a world where business is moving faster than ever before, where digital natives are disrupting large enterprises not in years, but in months. And data is the secret to their success.
Enterprises know this, too, which is why they’re ready to invest in new technologies to change how they make decisions, engage with customers, and operate their businesses. The benefits of data driven decision making are clear - they help with cost savings, time optimization and ROI maximization. Despite this understanding, less than 15% of organizations say they have created a data-driven culture, with simple technology cited as a key barrier.
The desire to address this challenge is at an all-time high, while the technology required to change the status quo has become available for the first time. The iron has never been hotter! And on a personal front, the timing worked out spectacularly - my boys now get to use brilliant words like kerfuffle and knackered at the perfect age.
The last, and by far the most important decision criteria for me, were the people I’d be working with. To say every person I have met at ThoughtSpot throughout my process has impressed me would be a massive understatement. The character and unified passion of this team to not only build an amazing company, but change the way their customers run their business, is addicting.
The ability to join this team and learn from Brian, Sudheesh, Ajeet and more was something I could not walk away from. The ability to join Octavian, Dan, Christian, Benjamin, Hannah, Amir, Marc and the entire EMEA team fires me up as I type this.
Thank you to all the AppD customers and partners, I truly appreciate the opportunity to work together over the years. Thank you to all my colleagues at AppDynamics, I will cherish the friendships created for a lifetime. Finally, thank you to the ThoughtSpot team for welcoming me with me such warmth.