In the last decade, I documented my journey of ups and downs and all arounds. There are a series of lessons I have learned about how to interact in a team, how to keep out of the small stuff both personally and professionally, and how to capture today’s value in a way that increases my total value overtime. Based on the lessons I have learned, I decided to draft this page. A manifesto. The things I know are critical for the life of an organization.
The evolving list of cultural principles are the core values that guide me in life. These are the reasons I do what I do the way I do. I am customer-centered and results-driven both personally and professionally.
One of the first things I look for in potential cofounders or collaborators of any kind are whether our values are aligned. I find this to be a primary step in building movements and organizations because once you find the people who are aligned with your values, you compliment each other’s strengths and weaknesses then it will not matter whether you work on this project or that project. The right team eventually succeeds.
Projects come and go. People last forever.
Working in a high number of team environments in corporations, universities, and social sector organizations has exposed me to a range of personalities and organizational cultures. If anyone on the team is excluded it begins to foster mold and decay within the organization. Any leadership or management level employee who enable, cause, or support exclusion should immediately be addressed. Not only does the future of the company depend on it, but we are also talking about human lives here.
Building off inclusion is the concept of transparency. I find that an effective method for instilling a consistent level of inclusion comes from an organization that is completely transparent. Communication between employees, regardless of hierarchical position, is open and accessible to all involved. Things that take place in any department or meeting are documented and shared with the rest of the organization so that all members of the team are caught up. Furthermore, by empowering the entire team with access to such basic information also empowers the organization with increased innovation capacity. Members of the team who missed a meeting can review notes and provide new ideas that may have been missed or neglected otherwise.
I look at empathy as something we are able to learn and cultivate over time. I continue to develop a deeper sense of empathy for friends, family, colleagues, and strangers. Having the ability to gain an empathetic of my customer provides me with a unique advantage over my competitor. I invest adequate time in the beginning of a project to focus strictly on the problem my customer is facing. A comprehensive understanding of the unsolvable problem is the first step towards outlining the ideal solution.
Can’t we all just get along? It is much easier to just be nice. I am interested in working with individuals and for organizations who function as a team. Business decisions are made through democratic prioritization.
A team is a team. The sum is greater than the parts. Nothing great was ever built alone.