Sylvie Gélinas, Founder of Noos
At Middle, we are fortunate to be surrounded by passionate women in our professional and private lives. As an agency that is composed – for the time being – 100% with women, we felt it was important to highlight these inspiring women.
What is Noos?
Noos is a tool that allows its users to have access to resources, methods and Saas tools to optimize intelligence time through continuous quality information.
At Middle, we use it as a business intelligence tool for our clients. Thanks to its search criteria and parameters, Noos allows us to stay on top of the news within each of our clients’ industries.
Interview with Sylvie Gélinas, founder of Noos.
What is the vision behind Noos?
Noos is a summary of a lot of wills, including the will to do something meaningful. Not just a company, but an impact company with an obligation to succeed. Our mission is to leverage the intelligence of people to enable them to contribute effectively and accelerate sustainable decision-making processes.
We are passionate about revolutionizing how we can support all people in an organization or group to generate meaning, share knowledge, analyze and make better decisions. We engage people’s intelligence, analytical and collaborative skills to accelerate sound and sustainable decision-making. Our goal is to be recognized by our clients as the benchmark for optimizing collective intellectual capital.
What is your exact role within Noos and how has it evolved since the beginning of the adventure?
I am the Founder and creator of the Noos methodology and I have been acting as President and CEO since its beginning in 2017.
We have gone through several stages of development, including the initial project in 2016 and the filing of the patent in 2017 (patent pending) thanks to the collaboration of Denis Poussart, professor emeritus and retired from Université Laval.
We then carried out a first pilot project thanks to a program of the economic service of the City of Quebec, then various projects that validated the product. We are now part of the Vitrine project, also a program by the City of Quebec. This has allowed us to validate, improve and promote the tool with partners who have implemented the solution within their organization, including Québec International.
What difficulties did you encounter in the creation of your company and what resources did you use to overcome them?
Challenges? Shortage of qualified workers specialized in our sector, Covid, financing, recession, radical innovation…
It’s hard to describe how difficult (and motivating) this period was and how it represents a tumultuous context forcing us to constantly improve. Through these external factors, and as a blue ocean innovation, we really had to do all the demonstration steps the hard way to validate that a real problem exists and that there is an urgent need to assist everyone in the organization to make better decisions.
We also had to develop our solution sufficiently to validate that it is a real solution to this empowerment problem, and then develop a platform capable of scaling to meet the needs of large organizations with a large number of employees… Now that the technology is here and the pioneer customers have confirmed our ability and their need, we enter the mass marketing challenge: How do we make people understand the important and unique value proposition provided by Noos and release a traction strategy that accelerates the sales cycle?
I can’t overlook the result of an incredible IT team, which was finally brought together after four years of effort, the support of the community – including the City of Quebec, MEI, NRC-Parti, CED, Le Camp, Datapreneur – and the guidance of our pioneering clients, including Quebec International, the MRC des Chenaux and the Borrowing Fund, to name a few.
Are there any women who inspired you to get into tech entrepreneurship?
We are fortunate to find ourselves in a social context where it is possible to rely on skills to advance and stand out. As a society, we find ourselves at a pivotal moment where gender differences must be overcome to simply work better together to create our future.
The inspiring role models for me are therefore those who wish to use their intelligence and power to influence organizations through values of sustainability, and a global vision, in respect of people and society. Any organizational leader who does not aim at an economic profit at all costs, but seeks to balance viability and impact for the community, the people and the environment are those who inspire me the most.
An incredible consultant in impact-driven business strategy, Ghani Kolli of Credo Impact in Montreal, provides an excellent summary of the type of leader we are looking for: we need to move from “how to be the best in the world” to “how can we be the best for the world”.
We know that the technology field is often male-dominated. Do you have any advice for women who want to get into this field?
Any great business and innovation project requires the combination of many skills. As individuals, we can’t have them all. I believe that you can’t do great projects in technology without one of the following:
- Being an expert in the technical field in which you start OR
- Have a trusted and long-term collaborator who has these skills – which was my case. My expertise could be combined with technology and it is the mix of the two that allowed us to create a real innovation with Noos!
Middle is very proud to be able to work with women like Sylvie, who provide us with solutions to develop our skills in our business and who inspire us and lead the way for women in technology by representing women in leadership positions in the industry.
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