#1, Best Places to Work, 2011 Biz Journal
Best Places to Work
#1 Medium Company
The Nerdery hosts week-long summer and winter Pentathanerd competitions. Above: The winning team in January's inter-office 'Olympics for nerds' celebrates.
From the desk of Mike Derheim, CEO...
What are some benefits and/or rewards that help keep your employees motivated and engaged?
You are a Co-President. You are bigger than your defined role ... Play your part - transcend your job title, be a hero."
We empower everyone to make their mark on our company and culture. We want them to aspire to be a co-president. The late greatLuke Bucklin was the only president we'll ever have, and co-president was what he called us - all of us - before we lost him. In one of Luke's last all-staff e-mails he wrote: "Put your business card on the desk in front of you. Look at it. ... This card does not define you.
How do you celebrate employee performance?
Every week we compile a video of shout-outs, with employees publicly praising their fellow nerds for going above and beyond. Five shout-out recipients are chosen for free lunches the following week. We play our weekly shout-out video at our Friday afternoon Bottlecap Talk, where we also celebrate the successful launch of a recent project with a show-and-tell demo led by the rockstar developers who made it happen.
What are some of your workplace gatherings?
We have an all-company monthly meeting called The Nerdery MindMeld at which we discuss everything from company direction to emerging technology to workplace culture. MindMeld agendas are shaped by the most pertinent inter-Nerdery staff discussions happening in real-time on The Buzz, our internal online forum where we speak our minds with respectful candor based on a social contract we have with each other. The senior leaders of our company firmly believe in distributed leadership throughout The Nerdery, and to achieve this we crowd-source solutions by tapping the considerable brainpower and passion within our community.
Name companywide or company sponsored charitable endeavors:
Besides The Nerdery Overnight Website Challenge, we also support a distributed computing initiative called World Community Grid, in which people around the world download and run software to band together large supercomputers that work to further scientific research. World Community Grid's mission is to create the world's largest public computing grid to tackle projects that benefit humanity. While World Community Grid has multiple initiatives, we are investing in servers and programs dedicated to furthering cancer research.
What does having fun at work mean to you? How do you carry that energy over to client relationships?
We're doing what we do best and loving it, and that's infectious in a good way. Our vision statement is: 'We will be the best place in the world for web nerds to work - a destination employer for the brightest people with a reputation for putting cutting edge technologies to work on interesting projects.' Striving toward this is as big a win for our partners as it is for us. We want people who blur the line between work and play. To us, partnering with creative minds and big thinkers to engineer and execute their interactive projects is also just the simple act of following our bliss.
"It starts with loving what we do, and this is incredibly infectious." - Bill Stephenson, chief financial officer of The Nerdery
Office: (952) 948.1211 x1069
Cell: (612) 850.3178