Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Casual Connect 2013: Building an Amazing Sutdio Culture: There is More to It Than Free Lunches

moderated by Chris Ye, founder, Uken Games
·         Summary: Co-locate the team for face-to-face communication and keep them motivated.
·         Note: I only caught the first half of this panel.
·         Panelists include Joshua Nilson (Co-founder, East Side Games), Tim Teh (Co-founder, Kano Apps), Emily Greer (Co-founder, Kongregate), and Sonia Ryan (Outreach, A Thinking Ape).
·         Culture outlasts every company and allows them to be innovative and creative.
·         East Side Games printed their three pillars and posted it on the walls near the entrance. Their pillars are “fiercely independent,” “community,” and “fail faster.”
·         A Thinking Ape is decentralized by product. They make their core hours 1pm – 4pm, and everything else is up to the team itself. The teams can choose to work from 1pm to 11pm if they choose to. They try to centralize the company through town hall meetings and “Ask a Founder” Fridays where anyone in the company can ask the founders silly questions.
·         General tips – stress communication between employees, put people in the office at the same time for that face-to-face communication, deencentivize people working at home, give employees rewards if they’ve been there x months, have annual all-company off-site meetings if your company has several offices.
·         There’s no silver bullet for company culture. Everybody will organically grow their culture in their own ways.
·         Hiring out of the player base will ensure very loyal and passionate employees.

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