Could you please explain how NERD is managed by you both? I know that Jérôme isn’t always working here in Paris.
Although Jérôme may not be here, the strange thing is that we are often in agreement before we even speak about a problem. So generally discussions go very quickly without the need to synchronise our thoughts with each other all the time. We are side by side on issues, we just react and exchange half words and quickly get to the point.
I think there is a kind of magic that works between us. Of course we do discuss things, but it’s much quicker than with anyone else I’ve met.
I don’t think it was this strong in the beginning, but we built this relationship and with experience we learned how to make the ideas progress between us. But the company is not composed of just the two of us, so we speak a lot between NERD employees and take time to challenge each other’s ideas in a scientific way, stating the reasons we think they are wrong. We have a lot of “NERD”s here who are very aggressive about their opinions on technology and that helps us to find ways to tackle problems.
So people with different knowledge, experience and perspectives all came together, and what wasn’t possible alone became possible together.
In modern science it’s not possible to have a single person do everything in every area, like Newton20. Engineers from different areas teach each other a lot of things. You may not be able to use what they teach you in your own area, but it gives you ideas on how to improve your plan.20. Sir Isaac Newton, a noted physicist and mathematician who lived from 1643 to 1727 and formulated the laws of motion and universal gravitation, among others.
It must have made your work very exciting once you found such an approach.
Yes, it did. When we understood that, there is a kind of synergy that’s more than just the individual people you assemble – we focused on gathering people who have the same philosophy. People who think that working together is much more efficient than working separately.
I have to say it’s a pleasure to manage a company with only engineers because it’s a bit like Disney Land. Everybody is nice and cooperative and nobody tries to take someone else’s work. We know that sharing enables us to improve together.
Our engineers also know their own strengths and those of their colleagues. They recognise that they have weak points and strong points, weak skills and strong skills. They know that if they need special skills, they can go and talk to a colleague who has those skills and learn from them. Thus we can improve each other.
It’s also a benefit of being a small company that you only have to walk 10 metres to find an expert in any specific area. I think when engineers first come to the company they can be shy because they are intimidated by all the experts around them, but then they see how much they can learn and they soon adopt our company culture.
Ah, so NERD was created by the two of you with your individual strengths in mathematics and programming, and then you were joined by experts from various other areas. And then these engineers could learn from and support each other, and you were able to expand the areas in which your company excels.
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