We aim to make nearly everything at White Rabbit open to internal staff by default–from financial information and operational metrics to job descriptions and work procedures. If there’s something you want to know but don’t have access to, just ask. It’s probably just that no one got around to giving you access.
Making this company handbook public is a example of the kind of transparency we value. Making it publicly accessible helps broaden awareness within the company and with the outside world. This kind of open transparency helps us recruit people that care about our values and allows us to get more feedback from people outside the company.
Communicate publicly. Direct messages on Slack are useful for discussing sensitive issues or for coordination that would otherwise spam other employees. However, to build a culture of belonging and inclusion, the rest of company communication should take place in public channels so that issues are surfaced and everyone relevant can give their input.
Direct messages discourage collaboration. Sometimes halfway into a conversation, it becomes clear that another person should join in, but they can’t easily see the conversation history when chats begin as direct messages. Use a public channel and mention the person or group you want to reach. This ensures it is easy for other people to chime in, involve other people if needed, and learn from whatever is discussed.
Being direct is about being transparent with each other. We practice “radical candor”, an uncommon cocktail of no-bullshit and no-asshole. Feedback is always about your work and not your person. That doesn’t mean it will be easy to give or receive it.
Be transparent to the right people (up) at the right time (when still actionable). If you make a mistake, don’t worry; correct it and proactively let the affected party, your team, or manager know what happened, how you corrected it, and how—if needed—you changed the process to prevent future mistakes.
Any past decisions and guidelines are open to questioning as long as you act in accordance with them until they are changed.
We practice transparency even when hiding the facts would be easier. For example, failing to provide a new hire with timely, meaningful, candid feedback denies them the opportunity to address issues which may hurt their chances of successfully getting through their trial period.