How We Start

• 2 min read

Handmade paper letter with handwritten welcome note to you. Photo credit: @rstephens

In yesterday’s news we talked about how to quit, in today’s news lets talk about how we start.☺Here is what we do at Assist (and the purpose) for every new team member that joins our mission.

Also, on-boarding starts the day someone says yes, not the day they start. It’s usually one of the biggest decisions people make so adding clarity and ease to on-boarding is often forgotten until they show up but we believe critical to start early. As Brian Chesky says,

Culture matters, don’t f*** it up.

Your founding story, how everyone got here, why you are where you are today, etc etc. Don’t forget that no one knows what you know. Repeat like a broken record. We try to educate ongoing for the weeks leading up to your start date. We do this using a Quip checklist and adding them to certain Quip docs before they start so they can read. This cost less than $100 per employee.

As a founder, you can create chaos or clarity. Choose the latter, it’s your job. Robert, Giovanni and I are obsessed with this and it’s awesome having a co-founder who has the same belief on creating culture.

Here’s our ritual at Assist. Would love to hear yours.

Robert Stephen’s welcome letter, he accepted ☺

We walk to the Wave Organ (one of the coolest sights in SF that overlooks Alcatraz) and give them a hand written welcome letter that is wrapped with a key. (don’t always do this walk if not in SF) The letter also comes next to an old Alcatraz lock which the key unlocks as we stand looking at Alcatraz. You never forget where you got the key, the simple reminder that we have everything we need to succeed. We then give them a box with our logo etched in it which opens to two hand cut metal keys (modeled after our logo)and a notebook with a personal letter engraved for them. One key signifies you and the other signifies the team. Together, we make the company. Welcome.

Handmade box with our logo etched in it.

Welcome letter from us stamped into a handmade notebook.

Metal cut keys of our logo.

Check out Assist here:

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