How did Conscious Culture begin?
Conscious Culture comes from our experience at Bolt. As the organization grew, we found that we needed to codify what made Bolt work well—and improve those parts of the company that didn’t. This created a whole series of discussions and conversations about “company culture”. Culture was important to our employees. So rather than just treat it as the always-pushed-back Google Calendar invite, we decided to invest in it, iterate on it, and link humanity and execution in our culture—then share the results.
Why these Foundational Principles?
Because we found these principles worked for us. They helped us take the sometimes nebulous concept of “culture” and turn it into something tactical and tangible, one that benefits both the business and our people. Sadly, “culture” has become one of those buzzy concepts that can basically be used in any circumstance. We wanted to make it more concrete—to give people a mix of culture principles and conscious tactics that worked. Importantly, these operating values aren’t set in stone. One of the virtues of being a small, rapidly-growing start-up is that we want to iterate on everything—including these principles, if and when change is appropriate. And we want to take you along on that journey, good and bad, so that we can grow consciously together.
Do I have to adopt all of the principles of a Conscious Culture?
No. The whole point of the Conscious Culture movement is that we’re providing an array of tools, techniques, and tips to improve culture, but doing so is a choose-your-own-adventure mission. No two businesses are exactly alike, and no two companies are going to adopt these principles in the same way. It’s up to you to say, “Hey, I like what Bolt’s done with how they organize meetings” and then take our playbook and use it for yourself.
What does it mean to commit to a Conscious Culture
The simple answer: it means that you’ve committed to turn culture from something that just happens at your company to something you make happen. Think about it: for all the time companies big and small spend on marketing, product design, engineering, and recruitment, how much time do we spend deciding what kind of place is going to do all of those things? It’s one of the funny paradoxes we noticed at Bolt. We had built a culture unconsciously, and we knew it could be better if we did it consciously. That’s why we started conscious.org, so that we could build a movement of companies committed to bridging execution with humanity.