By Michelle Rousseau, Head of Culture, Kyrio, Inc.
Building Kyrio “culture first” was one of Mitchell Ashley’s highest priorities when he took the position as President and GM of Kyrio last summer. Evidence of this decision is that his first Kyrio hire was me as Head of Culture. My blogs will reveal the impact a steadfast focus on culture has on bringing the value of proven technologies to new customers, markets and industries served by Kyrio.
Head of Culture at Kyrio
Creating a unique psychological space and developing an environment that supports our unique business and talent goals is a more straight-forward responsibility when you start fresh, but starting from scratch wasn’t what we were blessed with. Knowing that we were migrating several services born in CableLabs into Kyrio along with their teams, I was tasked with creating a unique culture congruent and fluid with our parent company. Employees of CableLabs would actually be sitting at their same desks but moving under the Kyrio brand, becoming Kyrio employees, along with new hires and talent from other experiences and industries. We had to increase the pace, create and align to the Kyrio vision, and increase transparency and communication that’s needed in a customer and service focused organization. Most importantly, we needed to understand what it meant now that we are supporting paying customers relying on Kyrio for technologies essential to their business success.
Basic ingredients that helped define our culture were shared beliefs in customer love, forward-thinking contagious passion, courageous and grounded integrity and a strong, diverse community. Our bias to action is unstoppable and our promotion of the entrepreneurial spirit makes everyone feel like they can make a difference without asking for permission. We defined five characteristics using input from all of our employees, which led to our cultural foundation; Customer, Community, Speed, Passion and Integrity.
Our culture is truly one created by our employees. This collaboration took place using a variety of methods. We used official change management frameworks paired with social experiments, experiential culture-immersion sessions, a lot of whiteboard space and a few new tools based in positive psychology to help embed our collective cultural understanding. I would be remiss to leave out blood, sweat and tears plus a lot of hard work by everyone.
As I write this blog on May 12th, 2016, 8 months after we began, I can say we created a strong cultural foundation that’s taken root, yet the work is far from over. I will write a series of blog posts that will look historically at how we developed our culture, including lessons learned and offer useful advice. I will also touch on what still lies ahead for us in building, maintaining and enhancing our culture at Kyrio.
Culture is a big reason why our customers and employees love working with us. Our focus on Customer, Passion, Integrity, Speed and Community drive this home. Future blog posts will take you behind the scenes so you can witness how our approach to each of these characteristics adds true value back to our company and, most importantly, our customers.
“Kyrio: powered by culture.” – Michelle Rousseau, Head of Culture