Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Introducing Rightpoint Michigan - The People

Jesse Murray, SVP, Employee Experience

By Jesse Murray

In the last post I introduced how the connections came about between myself, Brad and Ross to get the discussion started.  From the onset it was clear culture was critical and in this post we'll delve into the people of Rightpoint

The Right Time and Person
>>The Right People
The Right Space - Location
The Right Space - Making it Home

Rightpoint leadership is fanatical about hiring and retaining the right people, ensuring not only that a colleague is highly competent in their field but equally as much they will be a fit for our culture.  Our interview process has 3 legs, culture, consulting and expertise and each potential hire will have to interview with a number of people who are assessing one or more of those aspects.  These interviews take place at our office, typically in Chicago, as each potential new colleague is given firsthand exposure to the company culture and environment. 

It is this visit that truly provides the first understanding of our culture, we work hard but we're fun.  Our space is energetic and creative and diverse, reflective of our team of diverse skillsets (creative, user experience, technical) and backgrounds.  It was my goal during the interview process to judge the culture of the organization by asking everyone I spoke with the same questions. Why are you here? 


To a person the responses all came back to the core values, with different aspects having higher or lower degrees depending on the person.  This was my moment of clarity, or shall I say my first moment so far.  Though diverse in skills and background, everyone was united around these core values, the reason why Rightpoint exists, the WHY of our profession. 



Well obviously my journey continued beyond the interview and in December of 2012 I made the leap to join Rightpoint to lead the expansion to Michigan which brought me to my next moment, the new business card.  What likely seems an innocuous point really drove home a cultural point, no titles on business cards?  Having had so many different business cards and titles over the years this simple point caught me off guard.  It's not that I particularly care for titles, to be honest I've largely ignored such labels in my career.  But to simply not have them was a refreshing moment for me where I felt the culture.  However, at this point I was still in Michigan.

This leads us what has definitely been the most eye opening moment in my time here, the 2013 Kickoff Company meeting.  I've been to more of these than I can remember and though I was very excited to meet everyone and spend some quality time discussing 2013 I can't say I was really prepared for what I was about to see.  For some context I had been preparing for this meeting with other leaders as I was asked to speak and discuss our goals for Michigan in the coming year(s).  I had slides ready and was fairly confident in being ready to go, and then Ross kicked off the festivities with company vision and what I can only describe as a truly emotional presentation.  This was not leadership talking to employees, this was something different, something quite a bit more collaborative and engaging.

And so it was when my time came to speak I cast aside my slides and tried my best to join the team discussion.  I shared my immediate reaction, our plans for Michigan and thanked everyone for entrusting the Rightpoint name to me.  This was like no company meeting I'd ever witnessed before and by the end of the day, and after conversations with many a Righpointer, the importance of our culture and magnitude of my task truly set in.  I return to Michigan with a mission to recreate and protect that culture!