Posted by: teresitaabaykrueger | April 24, 2009

What I characterise as the best cultural environment to work in or What I desire after many years at a large rigid enterprise

I make it a point, as I search job sites, to review first the organization mission, culture, services tabs. This gives me an overall sense of what the professional work environment might be like. From these searches I’ve created my own list.
Inspired by a web site that aggregates intelligence about people, their skills and business needs.

1: A WORKPLACE TO BUILD A NAME FOR MYSELF
Ideally, an SMB that is going places – being part of it’s journey is a big deal.

2: OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN SOMETHING NEW EVERY STEP OF THE WAY
If I wanna, and I should, then the workplace to do it in is desirable.

3: WHERE I CAN BE COURAGEOUS (FEARLESSLY)
If you’re not making the occasional mistake, then you’re afraid to try. If the work environment is intolerant of the above – run away! If you can’t accept failure early – then you need to move on.

4: A PLACE TO BE INNOVATIVE
Independent thinking should be encouraged – heck, it should be expected, cajoled, dared.

5: AT OR NEAR THE TIPPING POINT (as described by Gladwell)
Growing fast, but still small enough to hear and listen (that’s the catch!) to ideas, and successful enough to have them implemented (i.e. have the money!).

6: “SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME” AKA GOT MY BACK
A place where folks strive to care of each other – but not baby-sit. A motto akin to “we all succeed when we strive together”. Also, in terms of benefits, from profit sharing to retirement investment plans, health, dental, flextime, family leave, partner recognition … a sense of social responsibility.

6: HAVE FUN WHILE WORKING (Whistle While you Work….)
Oh is this key! Life’s too short to drink bad wine. It’s also too short to hate your job. My ideal workplace employs a culture that knows when to turn it up and when to turn it down ( Chill out parties, recognition, practical jokes – in good taste, share the success with a smile ).

7: WORK WITH GREAT PEOPLE
And I mean people, at all levels. Hence my preference for a flatter hierarchy. I like diversity in thoughts, deeds, interests, ethnic persona. A place that employs young and younger, guys and gals, everyone from PhDs to moms, singers, jugglers and poets, rock climbers and accidental archeologists, oh, and knitting instructors. It’s the insatiable curiosity and knowing that the team (here’s a good term, team) is onto something big and driven by the expectation.

8: ATTACKS INTERESTING PROBLEMS
… With the support of the folks who want to solve them with me.

9: CHANGE THE WORLD
Whenever I talk about the future of businesses and information technology, I invariably mention how technology is a force for the better – that hidden inside these techno-wonders are the things of dreams, nuggets of knowledge for a future yet to be realised, of a fully connected world with neither time or space constraints, of the true fulfillment of human nature. Oh yes, and you can make money too!

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