Thoughts Over the Wire

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From Startup to Scaleup: How did you come to start at ThoughtWire?

This is a very special summer for ThoughtWire; on August 25th, our company will hit it’s ten-year anniversary! Join us over the next few weeks as we celebrate #TWTURNS10 and hear firsthand from early employees about our journey From Startup to Scaleup. 

If ThoughtWire were a marriage, it’d be time to think of a gift made of tin. If it were a person, we’d be gearing up for a rad pizza party at laser tag or glow-in-the-dark mini golf. As it is, Canadian statistics show that fewer than 50% of businesses even survive for 10 years! It’s a huge milestone for us.

With that in mind, we sat down with four of our veteran employees who’ve been with us since the start or close to it: Jose Nunes, David Faria, Kiril Strax, and Yang Jiao. We had a few questions for them about where ThoughtWire has been so far and where they see us going, and now we’re going to share the answers with you over the next few weeks in the #TWTURNS10 series From Startup to Scaleup


First and foremost, we had to lay the foundation:

How did you get started at ThoughtWire?

Jose, Distinguished Engineer: I had worked with Mike and Stephen before, and I was impressed with Stephen's commitment to quality software development and testing and so forth. Mike and Stephen left, I stayed, the quality of work progressively got worse... (laughs) I got in touch with Stephen and said "Look, if you have any opportunities upcoming please keep me in mind." Some months later he asked if I wanted to meet him and Mike for coffee. They sort of explained what they were planning, and I decided to come along. For the first month or two I was still a contractor, but then I started working full time.

David, Senior Software Engineer: Before ThoughtWire, I worked for a financial school. We were working on the website to let students enroll and take exams, and it started spiralling out of control after a number of people had left. I went on a 5-week vacation and when I returned, nothing had been updated at all. The manager decided to bring Stephen in to run the project, and it actually got somewhere and started to work and started to deploy. I built up a good working relationship with Stephen from there. Afterward, when he started this ThoughtWire venture he wanted to bring me along. And he did, once it was stable enough to pull me in. He got me out of the boring financial sector and into the exciting world of semantic technology.

Kiril, Software Engineer: When I came to ThoughtWire for an interview, I got to meet Stephen and the entire development team (although “entire” consisted of only 4 people back then!). I was impressed by the professionalism and friendly attitude of the management and the entire team. Interview lasted for over 2 hours, and although I answered many questions, I also received answers to my questions. It was a professional conversation, rather than a stressful interview. The creative startup atmosphere, truly agile development process, commitment to quality shown by management team, and nice office location made my decision to join ThoughtWire easy. 

Yang, Director of Customer Success: Kiril and I used to work together, and that company was acquired. Kiril decided to move on to ThoughtWire, and I went on to a company specializing in hardware and construction. One day Kiril asked if I was interested in a position at a startup and the rest is history. 

Check in later this week for another instalment of the #TWTURNS10 series to hear more stories from the early days of ThoughtWire. You might even see a few early photos - true gems from the startup scrapbook. 

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