“Company culture” is a phrase thrown around the internet quite often these days. Organizations are competing for the best employees in a fairly tight talent market, and “culture” is a term used to attract that talent.
What does culture really mean? Is it the cold beer that flows from the breakroom kegs? Is it the edgy graffiti on the walls? Maybe it’s an office full of fancy standing desks? While these are considered fun company perks--and there is nothing wrong with having fun perks-- “culture” runs much deeper than a craft brew on tap.
Think of it this way. What do most prospective employees care about when looking for a new job? They want to be heard. They want to grow. They want a team they can connect with that shares similar values. They want security and work-life balance-- elements that can’t be found in a paycheck. What’s important is intangible, and it can’t be bought. It can’t be consumed, spray painted, or made to go up-and-down like the standing desks we all love. A healthy culture starts with bringing awesome people to your organization and allowing them to build upon a culture that attracts more awesome people.
TransLoc takes great care in how we approach culture, and we’re continually evaluating our total rewards. Here are a few of the culture initiatives we’ve been working towards as we strive to make transit the first choice for all:
Freedom to Experiment
Allow your people to initiate company experiments and have the freedom to fail. That may sound crazy, but you hired them for a reason and you should give them the freedom to make decisions in their areas of expertise. Without vetted experiments we wouldn’t be able to maximize the wisdom of our teammates and try new things. And without failure we wouldn’t discover new opportunities to learn and grow. There’s no room for innovation if employees aren’t allowed to try new things or expand beyond their comfort zone.
At TransLoc, we’re expanding programs that enable our people to self-organize and make more decisions. Decisions about our software, project prioritization, and even their own compensation. When we fail, we fail fast and together which allows us to iterate quickly and efficiently. Not only does this allow for more innovation, but it also empowers our amazing people. We believe that when there is a challenge, we can rely on the smart people in the hallways to uncover innovative solutions. Empowered employees are happy employees, and at the end of the day happy employees mean more success for the organization.
Our Twist On Performance Reviews
At TransLoc, we believe data isn’t the only way to measure a person’s success and contributions to the company. One of our latest initiatives is basing performance reviews around TransLoc’s values. Sure, hard data can be a decent indicator of performance, but it certainly isn’t everything. So, we discuss our company values: how do our people aspire to greatness, move swiftly and smartly, do the right thing, embrace challenges, be grateful, and take ownership? We’ve found that while employees can have bad months or bad quarters, those who excel the most in their respective roles are the ones who align with what we, as a company, care about.
This, in turn, opens up many doors for our employees. Knowing they’re making a difference at TransLoc almost always has a direct correlation to performance. Additionally, our goal is to help our people become even more awesome. With true engagement of the whole person (and not only using metrics to determine that), we aspire to help TransLocians evolve to their own greatness. We want to see our talent grow and gain new skills that make them progressively more successful in their career and life. We have a variety of ways for our team to grow including a continuing education stipend, lunch-and-learns, Toastmasters Club, book clubs, conferences, professional speaking opportunities, etc.
When our employees are connected to how they impact the organization and why their contributions really mean something, it almost always leads to career mobility. We prioritize career growth, and we work together to create pathways to take our people toward their goals. Through this process we proactively set up a plan to get employees to where they want to go, and set benchmarks to help them get there.
Diversity and Inclusion
At TransLoc, we have found a mindful diversity and inclusion program has impacted us in countless positive ways. When our people come together and share their variety of backgrounds and experiences, magic happens for our customers and products. Diversity brings new ideas, fresh perspectives, and exciting new solutions to problems. Not to mention, studies have shown that companies with diverse demographics tend to generate up to 2.3x revenue per employee over a 3 year period and are 70 percent more likely to capture new markets. Diverse teams also tend to be significantly more productive overall. TransLoc strives to attract diverse talent and we are purposeful about celebrating diversity throughout the organization. It’s truly amazing to see what our teams come up with when they collaborate, iterate, and use their collective areas of expertise and backgrounds to produce something revolutionary that has such a tremendous impact on the community.
So, what is culture? Culture is the intentional intersection of diversity with empowered employees who have a vision for their future, both personally and professionally. Simply put, culture is empowering your employees to do their best work and lead their best lives. Here at TransLoc, it’s not just what we do. It’s who we are. Come ride with us!
Want to join our growing, diverse, collaborative team that’s changing the face of public transit? Check out our open positions here. We’re growing every day and would love to have you join us!