Who's who and what do they do?
Each area of the business has one Advocate that serves as the primary point of contact on all projects within their space, and who is responsible for individual team member performance in that area of the business.
We hired you because we believe you’re great at what you do and have a ton of value to add to the team. We expect you to create value in your area of expertise instead of waiting for someone else to tell you what to do.
Every person here exchanges value with the company. You receive your salary and benefits as well as all the intangibles of why we enjoy work. We like to focus on the three that Dan Pink outlined in Drive: autonomy, mastery, and purpose. Hopefully, the company provides value to you in those forms as well as just financial compensation.
In exchange, you loan your talents to the company. (As well as the intangible factors that the company needs - adding to the company’s purpose, team camaraderie, etc.)
We are a creative, “knowledge worker” company. You’re not a factory worker. You don’t receive a checklist and then just go through it over and over again every day. Every job here has structure, but every job also has a strong creative element. Not creative as in “artsy,” creative as in you are actually CREATING something, whether that’s code or a unique exchange with another human in the form of a customer service email.
All of this leads to how we structure management. Management is another way to say - how to structure the value that we all provide as individuals into the most useful form for the company.
We divide into teams, and each team is lead by an advocate. Within those teams, individuals also have their own areas of ownership.
Advocates are called that because they advocate for their team. At the company level, they make sure that their department is well resourced. At the team level, they make sure that you are getting what you need to get your work done. Information, tools, other team members you need to work with, whatever you need.
They also serve as the person who coordinates all the work on their team, and works with the other advocates to coordinate the priorities of their team in relationship to the company as a whole.
They also serve as the person who coordinates all the work on their team and works with the other Advocates to coordinate the priorities of their team in relation to the company as a whole.
Sort of - Advocates look at the Giant Team To-Do list and (with your input) determine how each team can be more valuable to the company. From there, you’ll work together to figure out what your specific priorities are every day (and week, and month, and quarter, and year).
You work with your Advocate to determine which areas of ownership belong to you, and how to create immense value in those areas. You are responsible for your own well being and your own success in these areas. Advocates are NOT your task-master, doling out a daily list and then checking your work.
Only when it’s helpful for you. Advocates are always keeping an eye out for best practices, on the individual and team level. They look out for inefficiencies and advise on how to get around them.