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As a kaleidoscope, CopyPress is full of different angles, mirrors, and patterns that twist and evolve in many shapes and forms, but always evolving within the same context.
CopyPress prides itself on its transparency, and we want to share with you the parts that make this a very special company. We’ve talked about what makes CopyPress unique in the past, but – like a kaleidoscope – this is a different image seen from a new angle.
The same way that the whole is more than the sum of its parts, a company is not just a logo, a corporate message, and a bunch of faces on the “about us” section of its website. The DNA of a company is made up by the team behind it. It’s real people with families or pets (or both) that work passionately day in and day out to bring home the bacon.
Dave and I have been discussing the following issue lately: through the last 12 months, CopyPress has grown immensely, hitting most of its goals and being successful in many ways.
But (there is always a but) our culture paid the price for such growth and our morale has suffered from the effort.
Building a company culture is not a mission for one person or two. It’s a company-wide effort that cannot be imposed and must be adopted. It doesn’t flow downwards through the ranks. Actually, for this to truly work it can only be a spontaneous reaction.
To be honest, the prospect of creating a healthy company culture is quite challenging, as its morale is intangible. It is hard to see it as something measurable, but you can feel it – like someone’s soul.
How do you take care of something like that? Well, I think the first thing we need to do is be aware that it is there and that it needs attention. The second part is to be aware that 99% of what we do at CopyPress is a team effort.
A few days ago, Dave and I had a conversation and decided to put an effort to bring back our culture, our personality, and our soul, but most importantly to do that by sharing our vision and our energy with everyone.
To make that happen, our approach was simple yet complex: make sure that we invest enough time in sharing our vision, values, and goals with every member of the company…
…and then get out of the way.
As the video from Jim Collins (Author of Good to Great) proves, you cannot motivate people. You cannot ignite their passion. You can only make sure you choose the right people for your time, and let them live their passion.
Our mission is to give them the tools to fulfill their passion and support the drive, and they will become self-motivating individuals. We must also be sure not to unmotivate them by the usual managerial shenanigans (ie. bureaucracy).
The absolute truth is that a company is the reflection of the personality of the people that make it, starting with the founders and ending with the last guy that came through the door.
This influences every single aspect of what we do, from how we treat people internally to how we treat our users and customers, to how we deal with the ever-present difficulties that any start-up has to face.
After a long discussion, we came to the conclusion that our current culture, although marked by time and difficulties, still remains strong.
Our culture is strong because we have the right people on the bus, who despite our mistakes as managers still hold our company values to their core, and believe in our original vision to the point that now it is also theirs.
While putting together the presentation that we shared with the whole team on Friday, Dave and I came to the same conclusion: we have an amazing company because we have an amazing team – a team that has achieved incredible things.
All of these revelations lead me to share my thoughts on this space, both for our external audience and for our CopyPressers. Therefore, I think the first order of business should be to put credit where is due.
THANK YOU, CopyPressers for an incredible, tough, amazing, hard, beautiful, and intense 2013. The company has done amazing things thanks to your hard work.
We cannot promise that 2014 is going to be easier, softer, or less intense, but we can promise you that we will continue to fight alongside each other, giving our 110% to make things happen.