Photo by Ethan Weil on Unsplash

When I’m the CEO

At some point in my career I’ll start my own company based on an idea I or a group of like-minded friends come up with. Here’s how I’d like to think I’d run that company as it grew.

  • Our name will be cool.
  • Our logo will be simple and elegant. Something you’ll want to stick to your car window or MacBook.
  • Our website will be clean, dynamic and fun.
  • We’ll use agile methodologies, but adapt them as we grow to best suit our underlying principles.
  • We won’t post specific job openings — just that we’re hiring smart, cool people who may apply when interested. We’ll always hire candidates we love, even if we don’t know exactly what they’ll do or how they’ll fit in. They’ll be awesome and will help us figure it out.
  • We’ll be located in a locale where others go on vacation.
  • No one person will ever be able to make/break/grease/block a co-worker’s career.
  • There will be family-oriented company events in addition to adult-only outings.
  • Everyone gets every other Friday off.
  • Biking/running/walking/skating etc. to work will be rewarded somehow…chocolate maybe…
  • Every quarter will have 1 week where individuals or teams can work on new ideas, projects, campaigns etc. that they feel could add value to the company. All the projects will be presented at a company BBQ the following Monday.
  • 401K matching up to the legal maximum.
  • Everyone gets unlimited vacation — up to 4 weeks of which can be taken all at once if desired.
  • Everyone will get an office if they want one.
  • We won’t pay any bonuses — we’ll pay people what they think they’re worth then hold them accountable for their ROI.
  • Everyone gets equity.
  • We’ll pay 100% of all employees’ health insurance.
  • Everyone gets $3000 to spend on additional training/education/gear each year however they see fit to use it.
  • Everyone gets to go to 1 conference of their choice each year, regardless of job applicability.
  • If you are selected to speak at a conference we’ll fly you there 1st Class.
  • We’ll have an on-site massage therapist.
  • There will be an on-site martial arts studio with daily classes available for free. (maybe Yoga/Pilates stuff too, we’ll see…)
  • There will never be fixed shipping dates. It will ship when it’s ‘finished’.
  • ‘Finished’ will never have a fixed definition; it will be defined by team-wide confidence in the product.
  • Nobody will be confined to a silo. Everyone will have the freedom to work outside their primary role as needed/wanted.
  • Everyone will have a voice.
  • Everyone will be trusted to make good choices.
  • If you suck or you screwed up, you’ll be told, and privately. We’ll work with you to get it right next time.
  • If you consistently suck or screw up, we’ll hook you up with a recruiter.
  • If you’re mean, uncouth, lazy, inconsiderate, false, deceitful, conniving, back-stabbing, contentious or cruel, you will have no place with us.
  • If you don’t have an opinion and the strength to voice and fight for it, you will have no place with us.
  • We’ll focus on one idea to start and be freaking awesome at it.
  • Over time we might add to our portfolio, but we’ll never scale so much or so fast that any of the above are held in jeopardy.
  • We’ll make so much money at the acquisition that everyone will get at least 1 million dollars or we won’t sell.
  • We’ll not only change the lives of our employees, but we’ll change the lives of our customers because we’ll be THAT AWESOME.
  • Perhaps we’ll change the world.

So you say “but all of that will cost a TON of money!” Sure it will, but can you see a team that works under those conditions succumbing to failure at anything? I bet we could start a company without any idea what we’re going to build for what or whom — staff it with people driven to work for a company like this, and in a month we’ll have so many amazing ideas we’ll have trouble narrowing it down to just the one to start with. All we need is the capital to start hiring. Any angels out there wanna join me?