Company Culture: The Making or Breaking of an Office

By Jim Anderson, August 20, 2015
Company Culture: The Making or Breaking of an Office

I think we’ve all walked into that office: it’s hip and happening. Smiling employees are running around getting things done. You may pass a lively foosball battle as you make your way down the hall. There’s doughnuts in the breakroom and classic rock blaring in the bathroom. Classic rock people. In short, there is a sort of rhythm in the air, an unmistakable cadence inviting you to join in, get real work done, and have fun along the way. You can’t help but smile and think to yourself: “this is what work should be like.”

We’ve all walked in to that other office, too. You can feel the energy draining from you as soon as you enter into the dated lobby. A sad employee shuffles out of a dark corner and saunters down the hall as you wonder if you’ve just stepped foot into a scene from The Walking Dead. Kind of makes you want to run for the door, if only you had the strength.  

So just what is it that sets apart our tale of two offices?

At BrainStorm, Inc., it’s all about company culture. The culture can have a huge impact not only on an organization’s productivity, but on employee health and happiness as well. “Culture is something that we do focus on. It’s intentional,” says John Wade, Principal. “I think the most unique challenge that we have is in assembling the right team.” Culture is something that is carefully considered during BrainStorm’s highly selective interview process. “Oftentimes we’ll have an A player come in, but if they are not a cultural fit, that is not a hire,” adds Eric Farr, Principal. “It absolutely has to be a fit.”

Here are a few things that we consider as we go about building our company culture:

Create a Space.

A quote board where employees are encouraged to let their true colors shine invites them to take ownership in their work and feel a part of the company. Plus it’s freakin’ hilarious.

It’s Visible.

Culture is not only felt. It’s instantly seen on the faces of employees. You can tell if someone wants to be at work and if they are happy and full of positive energy.

Culture Creators

Eric and John have laid the groundwork for a fun, vibrant office where people want to come to work. These days, they rely on others to continue to perpetuate that same culture throughout the company.

Have Fun. On Purpose.

Want in on a BrainStorm secret? It’s making sure there are plenty of opportunities for employees to take a quick break and have some fun together. There’s even a culture committee that plans events and company getaways!

Set the Stage.

One of the things that makes Propellerheads want to come in to work is the office environment. From a drum set to a foosball table, there are many things that make the environment drive company culture. Besides, why sit in a chair when you can swing on a ski lift?

With so much riding on company culture, how can you influence culture in your organization?

What Now?

  • Want to become part of our company culture? See what we're hiring for.
  • Our culture enables us to create some awesome training solutions, see more of what we do here.
  • Learn how Yammer can change your organization in this whitepaper.
Categories: BrainStorm News
Jim Anderson

Jim Anderson leads the Product Development team at BrainStorm, Inc. and is passionate about technology and learning. He puts his pants on one leg at a time, just like you. The only difference is that once his pants are on he makes gold records. He also loves cinema, photography, and getting outdoors with his wife and kids. Drop him a line at 

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1 Comment(s)

  1. Ivor Davies Monday, August 24, 2015

    What a fantastic organization - a true model for others to follow!

    Company culture is huge - and BrainStorm has nailed it!

    Kudos to Eric Farr & John Wade for taking their company to the next level.

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