Sometimes, there are so many things you’d like to say that it’s hard to know where to start.
Which is exactly how writing this post feels.
Thoughts flashing through want to tell out loud the big announcement. Speak about all the once-in-a-lifetime-cool stuff that happened throughout the past 2.5 years. And also, share the reasons for leaving the Head of Marketing role in Bolt to go back to freelance consulting.
I joined Bolt 2.5 years ago, my months-long reluctance to getting hired for a full-time position having softened up after meeting the core management team at a startup conference. These guys were having tons of fun while growing the company, opening one new market after another. I wanted in.
I spent my first year in Bolt as a full-stack marketer, focusing on scaling the paid acquisition strategy and helping out wherever I could. In the early days, we only had one designer in the company, so I ended up designing my first Facebook ad campaign creatives on my own. Talk about scrappy and hands-on…
In the past 1.5 years, Bolt expanded to hundreds of new cities, launched e-scooters and Bolt Food, and closed new investment rounds. As the company grew from a startup into a unicorn tech company, we needed the Marketing team to keep up. Keeping up with such a rapid growth meant that we had 3-4 new job openings to the global Marketing team open at all times, with 5+ interviews per week.
Also, there were many new projects that nobody in the company owned yet. Being the scrappy growth marketer that I am, I particularly enjoyed the ad hoc projects that at first glance seemed challengingly impossible. Like designing, printing, and delivering 400 waterproof e-scooter stickers to Paris for a launch just one week ahead. Or making the rebranding from Taxify to Bolt happen in just a few months once we had settled on the name. Or getting the @bolt Facebook and Instagram handles that were owned by Facebook itself. I bet everyone in the company has a similar story of their own.
It’s been the most challenging, fascinating, and eye-opening two and a half years of my life. And I couldn’t be more grateful for having been part of this journey, growing together with people who’ve become close friends and have shared unmeasurable know-how.
So, naturally, giving up the global Head of Marketing position in one of the most successful European tech companies isn’t a decision I made overnight. Throughout the past three months, I’ve had (almost too many) moments of doubt.
But I know it’s time for me to move on.
In my heart, I am still the scrappy marketer who enjoys working on hands-on projects and growing startups. Managing a team of 30 people, my role in Bolt has shifted to that of a team lead, with most of my time spent on meetings, analyzing the reports, and working on budgeting. At some point, I realized that this is not what I like to do: 9 to 5 schedule, not enough time for creative projects, and no days to type away on blog articles.
I know there are many great marketers who enjoy leading a big team, it’s just not for me. At least not yet.
I have grown very close with the team, and feel that in the past 6 months, we’ve finally grown into a mature marketing team with a strong tracking and reporting structure. In a way, we’ve only now reached the point to really start doing world-class marketing at full speed. On one hand, thinking about this makes it even harder to leave. On the other hand, I know the team can handle all the upcoming challenges on their own, and keep growing results without my input. Whomever the torch of leading Bolt’s global marketing team will pass to, will be lucky to join.
From January 2020, I am switching back to freelance consulting + working on my blog and a book on growth marketing.
I am both thrilled and cheerless thinking about it.
I know I am going to miss the Bolt team and working on such a high-impact global project. Yet I am also excited about soon being able to work on personal creative projects, this blog, and consulting new soon-to-be-unicorn (:p) brands.
And, as Markus, the CEO of Bolt told me, the company is here to stay, it’s just getting started. So who knows… Maybe I’ll get a chance to re-join full-time in the future. As for now, I will stay working on some Bolt projects on a freelance basis. Seriously, thanks for bearing with me. 💚