By Spencer Allee, VP Data Science
At Ascent we have a set of core company values – Integrity, Cooperation, Persistence, Innovation, and Customer Obsession. These values work across teams and departments and give our teams a short enough list to remember. However, as a tech team we spend a lot of time talking about what makes a good tech team culture; we’ve arrived at a longer list of values around which we’ve built our engineering team.
We are a Best Effort Community
good faith, proactivity, hardworking, accountability
Best effort means we assume everyone is always doing the best they can in whatever situation they’re in with the information they have at the time. Community means we’re all in this together, and we succeed or fail together. Everything we do is in cooperation.
If we had to sum up Ascent in a single idea, it would be this.
listening, feedback, positive feedback, disagreement
Learning how to carefully listen, respectfully disagree, and provide and accept useful feedback stabilizes and magnifies all the other cultural efforts we make.
curiosity, learning, teaching, humility, collaboration
It’s everyone’s personal responsibility to constantly improve, and to help others improve. Since we all have much to learn, we try to be humble and curious. Since we all have much to teach, we endeavor to be generous with our time and knowledge. The fastest growth comes from collaboration, when we have the opportunity to teach and encourage each other robustly and directly.
deep knowledge, rigor, predictability
A deep, detailed understanding of our systems, libraries, and tools opens new opportunities, encourages comprehensive solutions, reduces chaos, and creates the predictability that allows the rest of the organization to trust us.
context, ROI, concepts/mental model, simplicity
Conceptual crispness and concision provides the clarity necessary to focus our efforts on the most valuable activities, and accelerates our progress by anticipating tomorrow even as we build for today.
diversity, attribution, helping, documentation, “yes, and”
Diverse teams produce better outcomes and tech should be available and accessible to everyone. Soliciting engagement from underrepresented groups and actively removing the boundaries around technical participation allows us to increase the breadth of our best ideas.
humanity, empathy, emotion, impact
Allowing emotion and encouraging empathy, among ourselves and our constituencies, acknowledges that while we’re all professionals, we’re also inextricably human.
examples, data-driven decisions
Examples are incredibly helpful to clarify communication and expose assumptions.
When we enter the technical hiring process with a candidate, we share our Tech Team Values with them as a first step before proceeding with the rest of the process. We view values alignment and technical skills as equally important, and we’re proud to have built a team of strong, value-driven engineers. If these values resonate with you, take a look at our open roles below and feel free to reach out! And if you’d like to see how these values play out in our hiring process, take a look at this blog post.