If you’ve been following our blog posts long enough, or if you’ve ever even taken a casual spin around our company’s website, chances are that you’ve probably come across several references to gap intelligence being a "values-led" company. Our five core values (accountability, professionalism, willingness, passion, and transparency) comprise the driving force of everything we do here at gap. And while all of our core values are considered equally important in the eyes each and every gapper, one value that seems to make itself the most constantly obvious around the office is accountability, or the belief that we own what we do.
Taking Ownership …
As a data specialist who is responsible for the data management of two different product categories, I can vouch for the ownership concept that is so vital to gap intelligence. On a weekly basis, I am responsible for the handling and accuracy of several huge data sets, and it’s something I take very seriously. I hold myself accountable for making sure that the data I churn out is top-notch. I own it.
I hold myself accountable for making sure that the data I churn out is top-notch. I own it.
… And Deferring Ownership
Recently, I had to temporarily defer that ownership to my esteemed colleagues, but for the best reason ever … I got married at the end of September, and traveled with my wife to Italy for 10 days to celebrate our honeymoon. Now I’m sure there are some people out there who also "own" what they do, but might be reluctant to leave their workplace for any prolonged stretch out of fear that the job wouldn’t get done in their absence. However, at gap intelligence, and with my coworkers, my feelings were just the opposite. That’s because we ALL exude our values-led culture, so I knew my fellow gappers had my back.
Pizza, Pasta, Gelato, and Data
So while I was exploring Rome, Sorrento, and the towns along the Amalfi Coast, my coworkers were demonstrating accountability by taking over my several data processes and ensuring that each one had a designated owner while I was away. While I was eating WAY too much pasta, pizza, and gelato, they personified professionalism by doing quality, A+ work that met the high standards all gappers have for themselves and what they produce. While I was visiting the Coliseum, Vatican City, the Pantheon, and enough other historical monuments to fill the pages of a college textbook, they exhibited transparency by being honest about which of my responsibilities they could handle, and allowing me to trust in them that it would all get done. While I was taking in all of the amazing sights and sounds that make the Italian way of life truly unique, they displayed the passion that gappers have for each other by stepping up to help a coworker in need. And last but certainly not least, while my wife and I were having the honeymoon of a lifetime and enjoying our first days as newlyweds together, they had the willingness to take on the challenge of covering all of my work in addition to their own to make it all possible.
All gappers are busy, there’s no question about it. However, the values-led culture that exists here is one that fosters and promotes a sense of community and support for one another. As such, we know that we can count on our fellow gappers to help step up when needed, and that we’ll be ready to do the same when called upon.
The values-led culture that exists here is one that fosters and promotes a sense of community and support for one another.
What a Values-Led Culture Should Be
When I returned back to the office after the honeymoon, I gathered several of my coworkers who had been particularly instrumental in covering my duties while I was away and, in true Italian fashion, shared a limoncello toast with them to thank them for all of their hard work. However, words and booze can never fully express the gratitude I have for being a part of such a great team. And while they would probably never expect any additional recognition or credit for their help, the support they showed me is a true testament to what a values-led, culture-first company should be.
So here’s one more toast to my fellow gappers. Grazie for taking on the "Italian Job" so that my wife and I could enjoy the honeymoon of our dreams together, and for creating a community I am both thankful and proud to be a part of.