Fast forward five years. I’m living in Johannesburg, South Africa with my husband. A billionaire decided to build an online automotive marketplace in collaboration with the Automotive Association. It was a smart, clever idea that derisked buying second hand cars in a crime ridden country.
They had the C-suite cowboys, the rock star tech team and needed hired hands to build the business. After selling the solution, I headed up the build team of 120 consultants. The juniors on my team were the same age I was at Priceline. I knew what was ahead and that team culture was imperative. We rocked it!
We worked, we played and we batted curve balls. The tech team didn’t read the development docs. Status updates were opaque. There was factionalism between suppliers. Close to launch, the 74 year old billionaire flew in to meet the cowboys. He cut short the chit-chat, hijacked a system tester’s computer and proceeded to break the system. He only left when he was done. It was after midnight. If the devil is in the detail, I’ve learnt so are the billionaires.