Entertainment, like friendship, is a fundamental human need; it changes how we feel and gives us common ground. We want to deliver culturally diverse entertainment globally.
An extraordinary customer experience is central to everything we do. To deliver this we strive for an amazing and unusual employee culture. This document is about our Pzaz culture
It is our aim to become leaner, faster, efficient, innovative and better – all the time.
If you want to work for us please read this carefully. We understand the way we do things is not everyone’s cup of tea, we do take it seriously and reading this document will greatly facilitate your understanding of how we choose to do things at Pzaz.
Note | In line with our open and honest culture Pzaz ascribes to, we want to say upfront we shamelessly plagiarized a lot of the Netflix culture outline. We want to thank them immensely for sharing their experience in the No Rules Rules book, we hope they don’t mind. We felt there is no point in ‘reinventing the wheel’ and at Pzaz we feel standing on the shoulders of giants will facilitate our own success in establishing an amazing business.
“Obviously Pzaz is different in many ways which are reflected in this document, but I have been running startups for 25 years and the Netflix Culture book closely aligns with my personal beliefs, values and philosophies on how the ideal company should run. We are possibly less ruthless in letting people go and put in a lot of effort working on personal happiness outside of work. But honesty and openness, ownership, accountability, commitment and passion are parts of our core beliefs.”
— Vincent Weberink, CEO. January 2021
Our core philosophy is people over process. More specifically, we have great people working together as a dream team. With this approach, we are a more flexible, fun, stimulating, creative, collaborative and successful organization.
Like all great companies, we strive to hire the best and we value integrity, excellence, respect, inclusion, and collaboration. What is special about Pzaz, though, is how much we do the following:
Pzaz team members are decentralized around the world, and united in terms of goals. Our ideal team is one where people are superb at handling operations by themselves, yet know what it means to be part of a team. Together, we will learn more, perform better, improve faster, and enjoy a work-life balance that is both fulfilling and rewarding.
To get closer to our dream team, we need to be certain that the people joining our organization have the same mindset as us. We aim for a working environment where collaboration and open feedback are embedded into all of our daily routines. Just like a sports team, we model ourselves to be competitive and united in our pursuits, because we care.
Constant feedback is fundamental to our team’s culture, where honesty comes before kindness, and mutual respect is everything. A ‘no-surprise’ environment is our ideal, where opinions are stated in the open, and mistakes are accepted as being part of a constant improvement process.
Stability is essential for success. If individual performance takes a temporary dip, we stand by our team members, offering encouragement, but also asking for the same in return. We grow together during the good times, and we stick together during more challenging periods. We’re also being realistic that unconditional love is not a part of a business environment. We are a professional team, not a family.
Our idea of a dream team might not be the ideal choice for you, and if that is the case that is OK. Our vision seems too innovative for anyone that prefers business environments where the risks are limited.. Pzaz addresses the ones who are unique because they think differently, and are ready to put their differences aside in order to achieve more. We are looking for those that are on a journey of growth.
Within our dream team, trusting one-another is a must. We believe in each-other’s skillset, mutual support, and active involvement in helping others succeed in their tasks, or integrate within a new environment.
We care about our success and the success of each team player. We foster a vision of growth where individual qualities put together will offer the best results.
We’re looking for the ones that want to grow and develop with and within the company. In order to do so, we still need to make sure that new team members are a perfect match for the team. Each member must have the potential to become an indispensable asset for our company. Those who make the cut will look forward to a fulfilling career. The ones not quite there might move on to pursue other careers, but will be fully rewarded for their efforts.
With stability there is also sustainability, this being the true measure of success. With us, it’s less about the time involved to achieve a task, but more about achieving results in a more sustainable, scalable manner. Effort will always be appreciated, but it’s results that truly define who we are.
There’s always a need and desire to improve and do things better. We’re completely aware that the ideal Pzaz team is a concept for tomorrow, where every experience shows us how to achieve excellence, or get closer to it.
Brilliant minds will always be appreciated, but that’s not the biggest factor in terms of choosing or keeping our team members. We’re made of highly capable individuals that thrive in a collaborative environment, and we’re looking for the same creative, shared approach that will translate into common success.
Your financial benefit is based on skills and achievement, being boosted in times of growth and success, where better results drive better rewards.
Feedback is a normal part of every business journey. Yet, the way you express and receive feedback will make the difference between us building a trusting, positive environment or a team environment.
We believe that a team will develop faster and produce better results if a trusting relationship is built based on honest feedback.
Even when uncomfortable, feedback allows us to create a trusted work environment. Actively stating opinions encourages individuals and boosts team spirit.
Professional, constructive feedback is a daily routine throughout our organization, regardless of title or function.
We encourage honesty and value those not afraid of speaking their minds. Understanding that this might be difficult for new people coming from different backgrounds, we’re here to assure and encourage everyone, don’t be shy or afraid, your voice needs to be heard.
Just to make things really clear ‘your verbal inaptitude is undermining our business’ is not acceptable. Whereas ‘improving your verbal aptitudes would give better results’ is a far better choice.
In terms of receiving feedback, an open mindset is the best approach, since we have a natural tendency to protect egos and opinions.
Knowing that dialogue is key, we have to decide for ourselves if the feedback is useful or not.
Giving feedback at Pzaz is helpful, active action, while receiving feedback is an opportunity to improve and share our views and respect the views of others.
As part of Pzaz, we encourage people to make the right call and, if necessary, use the leader’s guidance in making the correct choice.
You are always welcome to propose a better course of action where appropriate. Dialogue is always encouraged, since it allows everyone to be informed and aware of the decisions
made within the company. The only exceptions will be in urgent situations, where fast, critical thinking will be required for a favorable result, in which case the decision-making belongs to the team lead.
You are free to state your disagreement anytime, while explaining your reasons,
ideally in a written format. This will allow you to state your opinion in the open, and clarify your views, but won’t necessarily mean that we will reach agreement.
It’s the team leader’s call to make the decision, and it’s everyone’s responsibility to gather around the leader and drive the team’s efforts forward.
At Pzaz, we take pride in offering our employees flexibility and freedom. This is expressed in many ways, from flexible work hours, to being a distributed company with no central headquarters. However, flexibility means a unique standard of expectations, both in terms of individual as well as team effort.
We allow staff to work flexibly, so work can fit around their lives. For this reason, there is no time interval to ‘clock in’ each day.
The same flexibility applies to the amount of hours put into a certain task as long as it gets the job done. We believe work is better for everyone when people are trusted to manage themselves.
However, this attitude is a two-way street, and so we do ask everyone to be reasonable, and not abuse this trust.
If for some reason you cannot attend your shift, we ask that you let us (on Slack + a PM to your manager) know with reasonable time to spare.
Using Slack to announce this is fine, unless you’ve been told otherwise. We expect you to do this every day for every day of absence – unless you have been signed off work by a doctor for a period of time.
Being a fully distributed company comes with unique benefits, but also different challenges.
Keeping everybody connected and making sure the communication link is fully functional is one of the main logistical trials of remote working.
For this reason, we expect our staff to be reachable on Slack throughout the entire duration of their shifts. Short breaks are a natural, but longer periods of time away from a keyboard should be announced through a message in the #ops-whereareyou channel.
We understand that life happens, and there are emergency situations in need of our urgent attention that prevent us from doing our work.
If you find yourself in such a situation, don’t worry – we are inclined to allow you to take time off to deal with the issue, even if it hasn’t been approved beforehand.
Similar to sickness absence, we expect you to keep in touch regularly – this means contacting your manager every day that you are absent.
Emergency leave is usually unpaid, but
you and your manager can agree for you to use some of your holiday allowance, if this is mutually beneficial. However, this is strictly at the discretion of the company.
The private client information we receive through the provision of our services is strictly confidential at all times. You are obliged not to disclose under any circumstances the private personal details of our clients. You are expressly prohibited from accessing any system, database, records or other materials containing personal information without prior authorization.
Such examples include personnel records, medical records, bank account
information, credit card information, social security numbers, residential addresses, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, pager numbers and voicemail messages (including any recorded conversation) of our clients’ end-users.
In the event of a violation, any individuals involved may be subject to significant legal liabilities and even criminal prosecution.
Our company is resolute to a work environment free from any form of harassment that creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive work environment.
The notion of harassment can include inappropriate physical actions, as well as verbal and written remarks through inappropriate uses of technology.
This policy is mandatory and applies to everyone, including leaders.
One implication of being a fully-distributed company is that our employees will spend more time than co-located staff on computers and other display screen equipment.
This makes it even more important that our employees use this equipment in the correct way.
As a company, we have a duty to try and ensure that everyone uses their DSE in a safe, responsible and sustainable manner.
Some specific examples of what this means:
You need to make sure that you can carry out the repetitive movements needed to do your role without causing injury or strain, such as moving a mouse, or use of equipment such as a keyboard, phone or other electronics.
It is your responsibility to purchase any equipment needed to ensure that you can do this – for example, ergonomic keyboards or mouses, wrist-rests, etc.
Working in software development is a demanding industry, requiring focus, concentration and determination. For this reason, we expect our staff to be able to establish and maintain a working environment that is conducive to focused, productive work.
What does this mean?
Internet is the lifeblood of our business operations, being an essential asset of our lives, after food, water and shelter.
For this reason, we expect our employees to make having a reliable and fast connection a priority.
Your connection needs to be fast enough for the employee to be able to share/receive audio and video (for example, on a conference call on Slack or Google Meet); or to upload or download files as needed.
Since remote working comes with freedoms and responsibilities, we expect you to purchase and maintain all equipment needed to perform in your job attributions.
We will try to support you with this within reason if you require so, but just as with other expectations, you need to keep up your end of the bargain.
If your circumstances change and you find it more difficult to do this, you must let us know.