- Darshan Jani
- JPMC (culture)
- my first manager (you always remember your first)
HK and APal
- Speaking about this officially for the first time.
- Have spoken and discussed about this with multiple organisations; examples of which will be covered.
- But it was in bits and pieces. I will be connecting the dots, and hopefully I will be able to.
So, let’s get started?
- What comes to your mind when I say culture?
- What is it usually paired up with?
- Indian culture, coding culture, literature, dating culture, tech culture, organization culture
- I will be speaking about organizational culture.
- Which is the parent to all the cultures we were speaking about.
Why should you listen to me?
- Because I have worked in and for organisations; asynchronously striving for a good culture.
- And I have failed in the ones I was leading.
- But maybe that’s why I am standing here.
- I have been able to observe and identify differences in culture —
- when I was a part of GDSC TSEC, TSEC CodeCell
- when I speak to my brother about ICICI, or my father about departments in RBI
- during my time at JPMC
- When my final year started, I was thinking about a plan of action about what to do, and there might have been a hundred things, but one thing that I want to do is explicitly (not implicitly) improve the coding culture of my college (charity begins at home).
- “Officially”, I am a part of CodeCell and Entrepreneurship Cell of our college; but I am trying to work towards organizational culture of these committees.
- But again, this is something that I volunteered for and not something someone asked me to do.
How do I try to influence culture?
- By giving “gyaan”, yes.
- This is a very broad question. You cannot just speak about culture - when you want to change culture.
- We start asking questions about their interactions or just giving feedback on their decisions.
- But if we zoom out, it is less talking, more listening.
- The way to do is to understand people, understand perspectives, understand why certain decisions are being taken;
- And there onwards potentially try to find flaws in the system or tweak their thought process.
- Discussed this approach with Aayush Pal (engineering culture at market.xyz)
- TODO: A picture about dealing with things. A tree of decisions, nothing is right or wrong, it is about doing things the correct way — morally and ethically.
What will we cover today?
So, this is not going to be a checklist.
- like most of the things I speak about: design, documentation, culture.
These are the answers you will find for yourself.
- My job is to help you question things and how certain things can be looked at?
This is just going to be my take on culture.
- And trust me I am not “experienced”, I will be just showcasing my naive experiences, thoughts and opinions about culture.
- To help us think about culture when next time we look at an organisation.
- The illustration: decisions and interactions at a potential organization.
- These are all subconsciously influenced by culture.
- Culture plays a major role in the way:
- we speak
- we take decisions
- we work
- we take responsibility
Types of culture
- working/organising events
- CodeCell, GDSC TSEC, ICICI, JPMC, RBI
Types of Culture:
We are so much surrounded by it and it influences a lot of our decisions subconsciously.
- It is true what they say right — you are influenced by the people and the kind of ideas we are surrounded with.
- Like even yesterday, when I was building these illustrations, I found a potential UX bug in tldraw.com, so I opened a bug report.
- Again, no one asked me to do it, but it is because I have been “raised” - raised in the tech world; there were people like Kartik Soneji and Harsh Kapadia.
- Where you can improve software, and improving software is in your hands; even if it is smallest of the help.
Types of Culture (continued):
- Coding Culture
- Tech Culture
- In terms of firms
- Engineering blogs (cult.fit)
- Supporting open-source (Razorpay)
- Conducting in-house Hackathon (JPMC, Razorpay)
Talking about goals
External motivators/externally driven:
- Collaboration/Competition driven culture
- Result/Fear/Incentive driven
- Carrot and the stick story
- College Committees
- Tech Firms like Amazon
- Non. Tech firms like ICICI Bank
- Placement talk
- Goal-oriented Culture
- A tight knit family with culture
- Working towards a single goal
- Engineering team
- hackathon spirit blog
- “Getting done with things” attitude
- Resorting to temporary solutions
- Tenure based work
- Delegating work and being delegated
- open conversations
- hearing and respecting opinions
- how to be empathetic and practice empathy
- smallest case: empathy starts from within
- think thrice, not twice — before you say something (Or do anything or text or email.)
- When I say this, I am not asking to hold back — I am asking to review your answer/response/way of receiving and sending it from all angles. It gives a good practice of empathy.
- And of course, something that is reviewed thrice is better than twice.
- It might save you from some trouble, someday.
After working there for a few weeks;
- Communication Gap
- Accountability Gap
- to build a good team:
Character over Skill
- holding accountable/responsibile
- Building a good team, teaching them
- Encouraging questions
- Being approachable
- We all think we are open-minded, until we come across a different culture, a different opinion, a different perspective.