I think we have an awesome company with a lot of awesome people so I wanted to brag about it...oh, and share my thoughts on how you could be as lucky as me : )
Step 1. Hire awesome people
-We hire some of the best talent that Chicago has to offer, but we also want to make sure we would get a long with everyone we hire outside of the office. If you consistantly hire people you wouldn't mind grabbing a beer with, when things get tough, you know the people around you are the type that can work together to get through it.
Step 2. Allow those people to keep being awesome
-Most of the people we hire have incredibly interesting hobbies, side gigs, and extra curriculars that has shaped them into the person that we hired. We take pride in allowing them a flexible schedule to come in and get the work done we need to for our clients and head out when they need to and check out a Krav Maga class, go rock climbing, attend local meetups, or simply enjoy the all Chicago has to offer.
Step 3. Provide awesome people with snacks & beverages
-Everyone loves snacks & bevs, especially free ones. Once a week we take requests on what the cupboards should be filled with and make an instacart order to make sure everyone has the food fuel of their choice. We also keep a couple kegs on tap for those long days, short days, or any day really!
Step 4. Listen to the ideas the awesome people you hired come up with
-When building a business sometimes building the culture takes a back seat, so we decided that we'd leave that up to the awesome people that we've hired to push a bottom-up culture. There can be some really great ideas like getting standing desks, work-from-anywhere policy, and personal growth stipends, but also some..not as great ones like personal robot stipends...we're not quite there.
Step 5. Implement the best ideas of awesome people
-As mentioned in #4, not every idea is going to be feasible or wanted across the company, but the ones that will benefit the majority and increase workplace feng shui, we're going to find a way to make it happen. Ideas implemented so far:
- Standing desks
- In-office massages + lunch every other Wednesday AND work from home Wednesdays in between
- Work from anywhere to extend your vacation
- Quarterly office outings
- Employee chosen benefits
- Monthly happy hours
- In-office hackathons
Step 6. Embrace leadership humility
-We have slack channels dedicated to burning each of the leaders with embarrasing quotes that come out of our mouth, crude photoshopped pictures of us in various situations, and other things not appropriate to share via the public web...but stop by sometime and we'll do our best to embarrass ourselves for your pleasure!
Step 7. Repeat!
-Hiring great people, keeping them happy, and allowing for bottom-up change to happen = success!
Bonus Step! Nintendo Switch + Mario Kart (pictured at the top)
After much talk around the Nintendo Switch, we finally convinced the team to jump the broom and make the purchase. We did not expect our entire team to jump on Amazon and make the purchase, causing the product to go out of stock in a matter of minutes. Sorry if we delayed the joy of getting one in your hands
If you've never played Nintendo before you are missing out on a nostalgic-ripened experience of life. It not only makes playing every adventure game exciting, but allows you to crush your fellow co-workers in a game like Mario Kart on the go. After inviting a few peers and clients over to share in the fun, we all engaged in some cold bevs and good snacks while aiming for the #1 spot!
This is by no means a one-size fits all approach, but it's working pretty great here at Rocket Wagon! I hope you can take away one nugget that will help you on your way to building an awesome company culture!