How Ozan.com is building a company culture across several locations, time zones and cultures.
When we started this company we had one thing in mind: “Think global. Produce products that will be used globally and therefore; hire globally”.
When you have a global vision, the work automatically becomes global; from our benchmarking to your competitor lists etc. But when it comes to growing a global company, things get tricky.
Our old strategy was to hire locally because we thought that would give us control. But that didn’t quite go hand in hand with our worldview. We always felt as if we needed to have more and get more of what is out there.
So, we had to employ a new strategy;
- Follow talent wherever they are.
- Live on Skype.
And that is exactly what we are doing. With offices in four countries and six cities (no plans to stop there either) we are living on Skype, and we have followed and got the best talent there is out there.
We don’t only not regret, but we recommend you do the very same. Don’t limit yourself with physical boundaries or time zones. It will only get in the way of your universal outlook.
Culture is an evolving set of shared beliefs, values and attitudes. That is why it may have a direct impact on the strategic direction of your business.
So this is how we deal with the distance and different attitudes;
- Be nice. Number one rule. To everyone. Be understanding, and nice.
- Always make sure to schedule calls so we know when everyone is available.
- Be available, always.
- Talk everything through. Ask “What do you mean by that?” and genuinely mean it.
- Focus on work. Don’t clutter your life with unnecessary cr*p. Gossip and the like results in an unhappy workplace and low productivity. When people focus on work, there is no time for the trivial. Celebrate together and congratulate together. Feel like one team multiple teams at the same time.
- Get involved with people. Ask about their work and their lives, develop relationships.
- Finally, create opportunities to put actual faces to the names every once in awhile where people dine, drink, mingle and show off their dance moves.
There you have it! That is how we are building a company culture across several locations, time zones and cultures.