What is Startup Culture?

Companies of all sizes are on a mission to create agile, authentic environments packed with personality, passion and self-expression. We call this startup culture.

For the past several years, we’ve traveled the U.S., in partnership with Steelcase WorkSpace Futures, to talk with entrepreneurs and learn how they craft their teams, what they value and how they foster a culture that retains engaged employees.

Our research has also extended to include intrapreneurs — the disruptive, boundary-pushing innovators in leading organizations. These people work around organizational policies and legal structures on highly confidential projects, bringing an entrepreneurial spirit and startup culture to the large companies in which they work.

The four themes

Passion is at the core of an entrepreneur’s business. This passion, whatever it may be — passion for community, revenue or environment — becomes the heart of the business.

Personality is key for startups. For many entrepreneurs, this exhibits itself in the curation of unique items for their space: reclaimed or repurposed wood, rich materials and commissioned artwork. Feeling comfortable in the workplace is the first step to being engaged and productive.

Agility is critical for the fast exchange of ideas, strategy pivots and action items — all directly impacting business results. It’s also important for the physical space to remain agile and allow for workers to move between standing height tables, traditional desks and lounge settings to maximize collaboration and ideation.

Authenticity celebrates each person and the diversity they bring to the team. The freedom to truly be yourself without compromise is the holy grail of the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Entrepreneurial ecosystem

Entrepreneurs everywhere recognize that vibrant culture is driven by passion, personality, agility and authenticity. They thoughtfully fuel each of these themes to define their companies, carve out their place in the market and accelerate business results.

Intrapreneurial ecosystem

Intrapreneurs bring startup culture to life as innovation leaders in large organizations. With passion and determination, they leverage their roles and ecosystems to drive disruption and push boundaries inside established legacy companies.

360 Magazine: Turnstone Edition

Editorial from Brian Shapland, general manager
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Creating Conditions for Creativity
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Bringing our Favorite Places to the Office
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Igniting a Sense of Startup Culture
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Boosting Culture
Discover how Orbea, a high-end Spanish bicycle company, redesigned their physical environment to improve team culture and agility.

Digital Agency Finds its Groove
Groove, Baltimore’s award-winning digital agency, tells how they transformed an abandoned factory into a stunning headquarters for their growing business.

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