Portland is often recognized for its culture. Sometimes that's good and sometimes that's bad. But whatever the case, it's a town driven by culture---no matter how fleeting.
But culture can also be a key ingredient for startups. From hiring to preventing burnout to getting the most of your work, concentrating on culture can help startups reap any number of benefits. But how?
As luck would have it, two takes on startup culture came to light this week. And as luck would have it, they both happened to have come out on the same day. Out of Urban Airship. Sort of.
You’re going to spend a full third of your life working. Why not do it at a place that challenges you with hard problems, let’s you have an insane amount of fun and has a real business model in a burgeoning space? While these are the tactical elements that make up the Urban Airship culture I think the ethos of “work hard, play hard” is at the root of who we are. If you get a chance to stop by the UA offices in SF or PDX I’d be happy to show you what it looks like in practice and you’ll see for yourself that Urban Airship really is a special place to work.
So take a some time to figure out your culture. It's more important than you think. And it can make a noticeable difference on any number of fronts.
But as you're concentrating on that culture, bear in mind that "culture" is not synonymous with "perks."
In fact, some cultures---like "we work 20 hours a day, seven days a week"---are arduous at best. But they're still components of the culture. And hiring and managing to those components can be the difference between making it and losing it.
Now, get to it. I mean, unless your culture dictates you take Fridays off.
(Image courtesy David Burn. Used under Creative Commons.)