“The way we do things around here” – a guide to 365 Technologies’ culture
“Culture” is the environment that surrounds you at work all the time. Simply put, it’s “the way we do things around here” at any business.
At 365 Technologies, we believe it’s the key to our business, and (quite literally) the writing on the wall.
Whenever we have visitors to our office or post pictures of our office online, people ask, “What’s up with the words on the walls?” In a nutshell, it’s the expectations and behaviours that drive our culture.
We could’ve created a cultural guide and distributed it to our employees. However, like at most organizations, the guide would only be news for one day, placed in a drawer the next, and ultimately forgotten about.
We want our culture to be a part of our DNA – what drives us, shapes our behaviours, and sets our core values. If we sound a bit like Obi-Wan Kenobi describing The Force in Star Wars, it’s because we expect our culture to be the force propelling our workplace: the behaviours on the walls remind our employees and visitors who we are, the expectations, and what we strive to be.
In addition, each morning we have a daily huddle, where we read and discuss one of our 20 expectations. When employees know and understand these expectations, there’s a new level of agreement and cooperation in which a team can operate.
Here is our 20 emotional and expected behaviours. Enjoy!
- Think like the Client: If you ever have a question about what should be, just ask yourself, “If I were the client, what would I reasonably expect and what would exceed my expectations?” Every action should reflect the Service Vision of our business: “Worry‐Free IT.”
- Be of Service: The reason clients come to us and keep coming back is that we serve them beyond their technical needs. Many times our clients’ biggest problems are not technical problems. If we can help them in any way, lend a listening ear or point them in the right direction, that’s what we want to do. So look, ask, listen and be perceptive.
- Show that You Care: Other team members and clients know that we really care about them as people because we are interested in them as individuals. We put people first in our business. Personal concern can be shown in many ways. Show them that you really care.
- Take Problems to Their Source: When teams mature and work together, sometimes there may be differences of opinion or misunderstandings. Those can be times of great growth. If you have a concern, go to the person it involves. It is unacceptable, in our office, to spread gossip or talk behind a person’s back. Always go back to the source and find a solution so the team can grow and move on.
- Acknowledge Others: Our team recognizes and acknowledges each other for contributions and performance. Take personal responsibility to thank team members who help you. Find ways to acknowledge those who do things that may otherwise go unnoticed. Congratulate clients for their accomplishments. Everyone likes to know he or she is important and appreciated. Do that for someone each day.
- If You Don’t Know, Don’t Say: We work to keep everyone informed about what is happening in the business. Occasionally, you may be asked about something you have never heard about or that you are unclear about. If in doubt, be honest. Just tell them the truth, that way you’ll never have to try to remember what you said! Also, never just say “I don’t know”, tell them “We will take care of it.”
- Be Solution Minded: It doesn’t take much to identify a problem and tell everyone about it. It takes a great team member to identify possible solutions and act on them. In our organization, we all agree that if you identify a problem, you will also identify possible solutions, preferably three possible solutions!
- Respect: We always treat each other with respect. Even though we may not always agree with each other, we work out our differences and always give the benefit of the doubt to the other person. We keep all of our verbal and non‐verbal communication on a respectful level, and treat each other in the manner in which we would like to be treated.
- Leave Your Baggage at the Door: Everything that happens in our office every day has an impact on each team member and influences how we interact with our clients. Team members bring the best of who they are to work each day by “leaving their baggage at the door” and not allowing past or present, personal or business issues to negatively affect other team members.
- Do What You Say You’ll Do: The reason our team works well together is because everyone can depend on everyone else 100 per cent. When you commit to do something for a team member, client, or vendor, make sure that it gets done, when you promised, as you promised. If you are not sure how to do something or you know there will be things standing in the way of getting it done, say so. You always have permission up front to say you can’t do it. But once you have committed, it belongs to you to get it done… so make it happen!
- Follow Up: Team members form the habit of following up on actions they have initiated or things for which they have taken responsibility. For example, if you have responded to a request, following up by asking if the person got everything they needed would be appropriate. Do whatever you can to make sure there are no loose ends and that you get closure on the things you are doing.
- Be Early: Everyone wants to work with a team where everyone can rely on each other. It starts first thing every day. That’s why we all agree that, “When you’re early, you’re on time; when you’re on time, you’re late; and when you’re late, you’re lost.”
- Work Environment: We believe that people work best in a professional environment where they feel comfortable. Keeping our office clean and organized is everyone’s responsibility. If you see something that needs to be picked up, do it. If you see something during the day that needs to be cleaned up in order for others to feel comfortable, just do it.
- Appearance: When you are with clients, you represent the business. Your appearance, behavior, and your personal habits create the image clients will remember most. Team members come to work each day properly groomed, dressed and ready to make a great first, second and never ending impression. If you wonder if something you want to wear is appropriate, just ask yourself, “What kind of impression will this leave with our clients?”
- Speak Up: We believe in involvement and participation by everyone. Speak up, give your opinion, and make suggestions for new things we could be doing that will get better results with our clients. Don’t wait for anyone to ask your opinion. Jump in and make a contribution!
- Change: Changes are always taking place. Don’t worry about them. We consider them healthy and positive. Participate in changes without fear. That is how we grow and learn.
- Create Clients: Whatever your position in the organization, you have the responsibility to actively look for and cultivate prospects for future business from our new and current clients. From the way you interact with every client whether in writing, on the phone, or in person, every team member can create engaged clients.
- Be Happy to Do It!: Everyone likes to work on a team with individual members who are willing to do whatever it takes to make things happen. When asked to help or contribute, team members frequently respond by saying “Glad to help!” or “Happy to do it.” Having a willing attitude makes teamwork happen.
- Be Nice: Everyone likes to be treated with respect. Saying “please” and “thank you” to fellow team members as well as to our clients demonstrates an attitude of respect and cooperation.
- Make It Fun!: We believe that what you do every day should be fun and exciting. Find ways each day to make our work fun, exciting and entertaining while staying “on purpose.”
About 365 Technologies
365 Technologies provides IT-managed services for small- to medium-sized businesses in Winnipeg, Manitoba. To learn more about our fully managed IT service, visit 365Care+ or contact Steffyann Bisnauth, our Business Development Coordinator.