As a child of the ’80s, I grew up watching and loving Cheers. Ted Danson was always cracking jokes, and everyone drank something that I imagined tasted as good as Sunny D, my favorite drink at the time. I remember thinking that if I was really lucky when I grew up and had a job, I’d get to work in a bar like Cheers.
Decades later, I put my sitcom bartending fantasies on hold to work at Contently as director of people (that’s startup lingo for director of HR). Today, Contently was named one of the best places to work in New York City by Crain’s New York Business. The rankings looked at factors like benefits, charitable giving, perks, and company culture. For me, the most exciting part of this honor is that the majority of the scoring is based on confidential input from employees—and I promise I did not bribe their responses.
We’re growing quickly, and it can be tough to make sure that our company is a place where people want to come everyday. Yes, we have the cliché startup perks like snacks, laser tag field trips, and dogs in the office—which are all awesome. But it’s about a lot more than that. Our founders have three key values that they’ve instilled in each new employee since day one. When we have a decision to make that will have an impact on our company culture, we ask ourselves if it fits our core principles:
We only hire smart, talented, and driven employees. We give our team the freedom to take responsibility for their work because we trust them and know that we hired the best talent out there. They can take long vacations and work flexible schedules since we know they’re committed and will do what it takes to get the job done.
Be a giver
Giving is important from both a company and individual perspective. From the top down, executives promote a collaborative work environment. Many of our projects are interdepartmental, and employees are always encouraged to help each other to get work done.We founded Ladies@, a group that connects Contently employees with the larger startup and technology communities, to raise the bar for all women across the the tech industry. And through RaisedbyUs, a nonprofit, we set up payroll deductions to donate to hundreds of charities.
At Contently, we truly care about each other. Whether it’s karaoke on a Friday night, playing in our shuffleboard league, or meeting for our monthly book club, we choose to spend time together outside of the office. As we continue to hire new employees, it’s important that our team feels a sense of camaraderie and that we become friends with the people we spend most of our time with each day.
Our office may not be Cheers, but it’s definitely a place where everybody knows your name.