3 Principles of Startup Culture (or How InsightSquared Celebrates!)

[image source_type=”attachment_id” source_value=”33302″ align=”right” width=”203″ height=”300″ quality=”100″] Startups are frequently featured in the news – whether it’s former startups-turned-powerhouses like Facebook acquiring more companies (Hello WhatsApp! Goodbye $19 billion), hot new tech companies going public (King Digital, we need more candies to crush!) or hit new television shows satirizing the entire startup industry (HBO’s Silicon Valley premiered this past weekend), it’s clear that startups are here to stay.

But all the scuttlebutt around these companies in the thriving tech startup industry isn’t just about algorithms and applications and dollar signs – no, one common thread between all these companies is the idea of “startup culture.” The perks, the work-life balance and the other ways CEOs look to improve the overall experience at work all falls under the umbrella of “startup culture,” something we take very seriously here at InsightSquared.

Case in point: to celebrate a record-breaking quarter, we hosted a small rock concert at our office, where our employees could dance, sing along and generally let loose and give each other (and themselves) a hearty pat on the back.

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Which takes us to our first principle of startup culture…


Startups are known for their transparency among employees, harping on this as a core tenet or value. After all, if CEOs and Sales VPs expect total honesty from their workers, they have to deliver the same.

Here at InsightSquared, not only did we know that we had a record-breaking quarter, but we also knew the exact specifics of what contributed to this new record – how much we booked in deals, where our largest deals came from, which sales rep performed the best, etc. We could track the exact moment when we broke our previous record for a quarter. No employee could claim ignorance in regards to how the sales team – not to mention every other team – was doing. Our founders strongly believe in open-source information sharing, and that mentality permeates every level of the organization.

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Unified teamwork

There are many disparate branches that form the tree of an organization – except here at InsightSquared, we strongly believe in the concept of “1 team.” This record-breaking quarter in deals booked was not solely the work of the sales team: after all, marketing generated leads that converted into pipeline opportunities, the customer service team did yeoman’s work in keeping clients happy and preventing them from churning and, of course, product had to engineer the award-winning software in the first place! All facets of the company had an equal part to play in helping us sell more software than ever before.

The concept of unified teamwork isn’t just about celebrating – it’s about working together and collaborating to get to where we all want. We all have the same goals; now let’s figure out how we can support each other in collectively achieving those goals, so that we can…

Celebrate good times!

Which brings us back, full-circle. We worked hard – really hard – this quarter to hit our goals. Next quarter brings with it even more demanding goals that will require more from each employee at InsightSquared. Until then, before we look forward, it is important to look back and acknowledge what each employee has done to get us here.

The rock concert isn’t just about hitting one number once. No, the larger point of the concert is built around a theory that our founders stress – that they want to build a company where its employees actually want to be, over everywhere else. Having a ping-pong table, arcade machine and kegerator in the office certainly helps in that department. We enjoy hanging out and socializing with each other. We enjoy working together. Clearly, we enjoy partying together.

Startups are not an easy business. They are under a never-ending pressure to grow, and grow faster. However, amidst all these pressures and stresses, and all the hard-work that everyone puts in, startups can also be pretty great places to be at. Make sure you have the right tenets of startup culture in place, and you too can celebrate just like us!

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