Letter from David, co-founder & CEO
To my potential future teammate and friend,
You read that right - friend.
Of the various dictionary definitions of the word “friend” I like these two the most:
1. A person whom one knows, likes, and trusts.
2. A person with whom one is allied in a struggle or cause.
This is what you can expect to be part of when you join our team. A team of friends. People who know, like and trust each other, solving interesting challenges together.
This sounds a bit different doesn’t it?
Let me give you a bit of background…
I was always frustrated with the culture of companies I had worked in. I wanted to spend my days with people that I like and admire. People who are authentic and care about each other. People I could really learn from. In these companies there was always a handful, but I wanted to be surrounded by them!
I also felt that I was never really able to make much difference in what I was doing. People were put into senior positions mainly because of their age rather than their capability. I didn’t want to sit around all day doing the same things over and over. I wanted to leverage the challenges in my work to grow to become a more fulfilled and impactful person.
The root cause of the problems with companies seemed to be that they optimise for financial outcomes or mission achievement as their primary aim.I believe it to be self-evident that an organisation optimised for the flourishing of people is not only the right thing to do, but that the other things like finances and mission will follow anyway in the long term. Everything will be better because it is all driven by a solid team of people who are enjoying the journey together.
This inversion of what is the ends and what is the means is a subtle yet crucial principle that completely changes how to design an organisation and make day to day decisions.
When we started Laminar this principle was embedded from the beginning and has shaped what we do ever since, starting with our vision statement which was first written when there was still just the two of us.
We exist to enable everyone in our team to flourish in a high-impact community that:
● Connects us with meaningful relationships
● Inspires us to develop ourselves to become better humans
● Empowers us to pursue our own learning adventures
We believe that, by first doing this, we can achieve the highest levels of value for the world.
I can’t guarantee that you will flourish. No one can make anyone flourish. That’s up to the individual but we will do our damn best to enable it.
I can guarantee you two things: you will have meaningful relationships and you will be challenged.
You will have meaningful relationships & will be challenged
Let me revisit that opening point around friendship now that you have a bit more of the picture.
In our team, we are all different in many ways but we have three things in common; we are all kind and authentic with an innate need to improve ourselves and those around us.
We are compassionately candid with each other. That means we put “Kindness” before “Niceness”. Kindness is acting for the long term best interest of the other. Niceness is acting for the short term emotional feeling of the other. Sometimes you can be both nice and kind but in many situations you can't be both. You have to choose. We aren’t the type of friend who tells you what you want to hear. We tell you what you need to hear to grow in the long term and help you to contribute positively.
Joining us isn’t just some “job”, it is a transformative educational experience. The people around you will challenge you to be your best self in all aspects of life.
You will be encouraged to see the daily challenges you face whether it be an ambiguous problem or a challenging client as exercises which you use to strengthen yourself as an individual. Skills that you can then apply in all aspects of your life.
Any role that you start with at Laminar is only as a starting point. Our fast growth means that there are many diverse and interesting challenges available. An our meritocratic principles allow you to guide yourself into whichever areas you are most interested in – we will enable it. You can even call me if you feel stuck.
“Isn’t this all too good to be true?” You might ask. My answer is both, yes and no. Yes, it is too good to be true in that we are new, this vision is not yet fully realised, there are many more things to do! But I would also answer No, it is not too good to be true as what we have done so far has already changed many people’s lives - those are their words not mine. I am frequently told by people that they were a bit sceptical before starting because it can all sound too good to be true. But that once joining, reality had far exceeded their expectations. So we must be doing something right.
We continue to build towards our vision together. The trend is upward and rapid. If this sounds exciting to you then you are on the right page of our website already. You know what to do.
If you have read this far then you are probably about to apply. Signify to us in your application by starting your cover letter with “Dear Dave” and show us your authentic self in your letter.