For the past few weeks, we’ve been diving into Lawyerist’s team core values and why they matter. This week, we’re talking about why we value team members who jump in, take the initiative, and solve problems. We summarize this internally as: “Grab the Marker.”
Grab the Marker
We’re confident, bold, brave, not perfect, and ready to step up and jump in. When we see ways to improve or solve problems, we make it happen.
Why Team Core Values Matter at Lawyerist
We use our core values every day. In our hiring process, our core values are a litmus test of whether someone would be a great fit for our team. We look for ways to give feedback to team members using our core values. For example, instead of recognizing Sara for solving problem X, we’d share something like, “Hey team – Sara really Grabbed the Marker today when she noticed a problem with X and did Y to solve it!” The same goes for other feedback. We might remind a team member that they missed a Grab the Marker moment and could have approached the issue differently. By tying everyone’s daily work and progress to our core values, we emphasize the importance of our values. They are more than cute sayings we hang on the wall.
What Does Grab the Marker Mean at Lawyerist?
It starts with a story.
Once upon a time, our newest team member attended her first leadership team retreat after only being on the team for two weeks. During one conversation, she leapt from her chair, literally grabbed the marker from someone else’s hand, and began drawing on the board to better capture and define what the more tenured team members were struggling to say at that moment. She could have sat quietly and followed the lead of the other people in the room. But she didn’t. She brought her previous experience and knowledge to the team confidently. And it was perfect! Even if her idea wasn’t part of the final decision, she was successful in her role and how she approached working with our team.
And that’s why we tell team members to “grab the marker.” We want them to know we hired them for a reason. We want them to show up and share their brilliance with the team.
What Does Brave, Not Perfect Mean?
This doesn’t mean someone has to have all the answers or be perfect. Far from it. But, we want them to show up and try their best and learn—that’s why we talk about being “brave, not perfect.” (Hear more about that concept in Podcast Episode # 242: Brave, Not Perfect, with Reshma Saujani.)
Related, we’ve also realized that the best performers on our team are the people who aren’t afraid to jump in and figure things out. That’s not to say we won’t help or answer questions, but people can often find the answer on their own without interrupting another team member. And maybe they learn even more by going through that process.
Looking for Ways to Improve
Finally, we don’t expect team members to just sit back and do it the way it’s always been done. Along with our value of Experiment Like a Lobster, we’re always looking for ways to do things faster, easier, and better. If someone on a team sees a way to improve, we expect them to jump in and fix it. We talk about leaving the campground better than we found it, and we apply that concept to big projects that will improve the company and the minute details of our daily work.
Ready to “Grab the Marker” and work with us? Check our current job openings—we’re always excited to connect with new people who align with our team’s core values.