Why we’re changing CEO seats
If the product is changing and evolving and the branding is changing and evolving, then why can’t company roles change and evolve?
As founders, Idan and I realize that when we make changes, we must strive to make them from a place of success, strength, and a high degree of certainty that these changes are aligned with what we plan next. No change should be made unless we are confident that it aligns with Zest’s mission and values.
Change is something that we prefer to proactively create rather than be forced to undertake.
This refreshing change meets all of the above criteria.
When we founded Zest, Idan and I had a conversation about who would lead it. Although, I had some reservations, with Idan’s support I agreed to take the reins.
At that time, our business model directed 60% of our efforts toward business development and growth: building our brand presence, developing an engaged community of Zesters, and preparing to scale. Product and technology development absorbed the remaining 40% of our efforts.
Then, following our successful fundraising preseed round, we were able to advance Zest’s technology and product development and our priorities shifted.
Zest’s new business model is product-first.
The Zesteam is now unified in our focus on achieving dominance in our category through the development of superior technology and the delivery of a high added-value product.
Most recently, our efforts have focused on providing support for the latest product under development.
This product is called Zest for Teams.
Understanding that product-market fit is essential for the success of any brand, the next stage of Zest for Teams’ development, is a closed, paid pilot program. An exclusive group of super brands from among some of the biggest startups in the world have agreed to join this program and provide us with ongoing input as we construct Zest for Team.
As for the details of the product itself, I will make a separate post about that later. I’ll also announce the opening of our second pilot group soon. If you are intrigued, feel free to send me a DM.
Zest for Teams is the cornerstone of Zest’s next phase of growth and fundraising activity.
So, while I was building the model and meeting with the companies who will participate in the pilot program, Idan took over Zest’s investor relations duties.
Last month, along with managing the product department and building the innovative technologies that are the core of our solution, he flew to New York to meet with investors.
That first trip was an unequivocal success. He has now traveled back to the U.S. to visit New York and San Francisco to share Zest’s story with more people.
When Idan returned from his first trip to NYC, we had the “circles” conversation:
We put our capabilities + qualities into a virtual 2-circle Venn diagram. We assessed where each of our strengths overlapped and diverged and how that positioning affected our ability to impact our venture.
As we talked, it became clear that this was the best time to make a change that would reflect our increased emphasis on the technology behind our solution. We are confident that we now have the right players and conditions to take Zest to the next level.
As Idan tightens our vision, refines our messaging and leads us toward greater innovation, I will turn my attention to growing our business, leading our business development, marketing, sales, revenue, and customer support and retention efforts.
These are my areas of expertise and the ones that I spearheaded when Zest was formed. I am very much looking forward to turning my full attention to them once again.
These past months have been an amazing time as we approached our roles and futures with an open mind and a willingness to embrace change.
Switching commanders is something that happens in larger organizations all the time.
Idan and I are both more motivated than ever and eager to see what will come next.
We’ll keep you updated on what happens next.
A special thanks to our investors who support and believe in us and have shared our journey throughout this process. And, an extra special thanks to the wonderful Zesteam, Tonya, Karolis, and our development team. You guys are our anchors.