Modern Enterprise – People – Culture
There are different schools of thought regarding the formation of corporate culture. The author of “Rework” says that culture should form around the people as they join the company. He argues that there is no need to “create” culture because it gets created as people add to it. That sounds good to me.
The diametric opposite of his argument was given by a “Forward Deployed Engineer” from Palantir. I respected their stance as well. They wanted to hire only the smartest people they could find. Their culture was guarded heavily and it was shunned to try to change it. Although they had a relaxed environment that had a “startup” feel, in order to keep it, they had to guard it. Another thing that kept my attention was their resentment toward “cancerous” cells, or otherwise known in a culture of successful hard working people as slackers. They said that like a cancerous cell, low yield producers infect everyone else around them.
What stance should an enterprise builder take?
Our culture has taken shape around our passion which helped form our mission. Culture is more than a personality, such as the founder or CEO. Our culture grows but it stems from a foundation. Our culture is highly dependent on people who believe in our mission, vision, and recently our core values. We work toward a mission greater than our company. We may not get there. It is inexhaustible by design: “To empower people to create a better world through the Internet.” This mission itself attracts a certain type of person. Those that don’t understand or believe such a mission don’t make a good fit for our culture. The next piece of our culture is our Vision. Our vision is tied directly with our core capabilities as a team. We are moving toward our mission with a vision for an easier way to create businesses and run them through easy to use software. While we work on it, we provide services. If a person can’t or doesn’t understand where they can contribute to that vision, they will not make a good fit in the team or the culture. People are either “on the bus” or “off the bus.” People “get” it or they don’t.
Finally, people should be inline or willing to accept the core values of our company.
Integrity – we must be honest, reliable, accountable, and responsible to the team and our customers. Mutual respect – we must honor and respect all those we work with inside and outside our company. Great team – we are committed to building up human capital to be the best in the world at what we do. Empowerment – we will empower our customers with our products and services to add positive value to society. Leadership – we are a team of leaders that lead by example, serve others, and influence others to do the same.
The core values were recently formed at our company around what I’ve observed and what I believe really shows what we cherish within the company. The core values formed as a function of our mission.
The lesson learned?
Culture forms organically but one must prime the team with a good direction, strong mission, and a good shared vision that everyone can see in their minds.
So that’s it from Anant for the today! Are you looking for help right now with strategy to push your own business through the startup phase? If so, drop us a note here and let’s chat! We specialize in helping small business leverage the power of the internet to scale their business from an early stage.