The Making of an Awesome Company Culture
At NordPass, we believe that company culture isn't something you can simply measure. There's no recipe you can follow. It’s all a bit more complicated and requires some magic. And that magic often happens when everyone contributes and collaborates — that’s when a fun and effective workplace materializes. When people feel engaged and connected to their company culture, they become more productive and proactive, which in turn yields very tangible results.
Every organization has a certain culture, whether it’s been consciously developed or distilled naturally over time. At NordPass, we have developed a culture that prizes individuality, creativity, and freedom. We are not afraid to fail and encourage each other to turn any failures into valuable lessons. We take pride in what we do and how we do it. Knowledge sharing and collaboration is what makes us as a team and NordPass a great product. In light of a recent interview, our CEO Jonas rates a few ideas related to company culture.
Definitely underrated. Too often books are not only underrated but go overlooked as a vessel of knowledge. There are tons and tons of great books by experts in their fields that can be useful not only on an individual level but on the collective as well. At NordPass, we have something we call the Best Book Club. As the name suggests, it’s a reading initiative where we tackle a certain book as a team and discuss its ideas or how those ideas could be applied here at NordPass. It helps us get on the same page with regard to certain ideas and their implementation. Sometimes this highlights the differences in our perspectives, which is a great way to see the same thing from different angles and check our biases.
Pro tip: Invite people within the company to create a reading circle where everyone feels free to discuss any given topic. Make room for recommendations to discover new ideas and perspectives.
No one’s perfect and nothing can be perfect. When taken to the extreme, perfectionism can be detrimental to the individual as well as the company. If you’re too committed to being perfect, you might end up doing nothing. Because doing anything with the perfectionist approach means that you have to sacrifice the magical idea in your head for what it really is, and too often ideas that enter the real world are messy. Getting the idea out without the never-ending grooming and the fear of failure is when we make progress. We get to see the idea for what it is and how it fails in some points and succeeds in others. It becomes tangible. It’s more about testing and improving the idea rather than coming up with the perfect one.
Having fun at work: underrated
Fun is another key component here at NordPass. We take what we do seriously and professionally, but an environment where you can have fun and feel relaxed at the same time yields the best results. Because of the pandemic, our weekly Monday meetings have moved to Zoom, but that doesn’t stop us from having fun in the chat section. This is often the place where the most interesting and sometimes crazy ideas materialize. And it’s not always about the ideas — sometimes we just like to share the funniest GIFs that will put a smile on everyone’s face.
When you're in search of QA guys. Like in a very big search
Individual responsibility: overrated
NordPass is a team effort, and we pride ourselves on taking our failures as well as wins as a team. We make an effort to not single out any one of us.
Placing the blame on an individual in case of a failure is the easiest way out. However, when you examine all the details, what you often see is that any single failure contains a complex set of factors. The attitude of embracing failure as a collective responsibility allows us to grow as professionals and individuals in a fear-free environment. It’s when people are not afraid to fail that creativity shines and yields results.
Fostering company culture during the pandemic
Since the COVID-19 lockdown, fostering company culture has become a rather challenging task. What we noticed during the lockdown is that communication is the key to maintaining our awesome workplace culture. Most of the communication efforts are virtual nowadays. And while it’s not the same as having a face-to-face chat or a stroll around the office, it allows us to feel a part of the team.
During the lockdown, we were able to start the Best Book Club, hold awesome team building events, and have happy hours on Fridays. These initiatives have allowed us to stay in touch in a casual rather than formal way.
For instance, a few months back we held a virtual STEAM team building playing a popular multiplayer game – Among Us. The game was loads of fun, but we also had an awesome time with our username generator. Needless to say, JohnTheLionKingOlive was the star of the night!
It may feel challenging to devote time and energy to maintain a workplace culture over the pandemic. Still, at NordPass we believe that successful organizations are those that foster a welcoming and otherwise awesome atmosphere and culture. Keep in mind that it’s the simple things that make up the big picture.
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