How does mission influence company culture? 5 companies weigh in

by Liz Warren
November 14, 2018

A good mission statement is concise, powerful and reflective of a company’s value. But if a company’s mission doesn’t line up with their actions, it’s just that: a statement.

We talked to four NYC tech companies to learn how their missions influence team culture. See how they turn their statements into actions.


image via tpt

Edtech company Teachers Pay Teachers helps educators share classroom resources. Product Manager Jesse Bentert explained that, while that’s a big part of their mission, what it really boils down to is making one person’s expertise accessible to all.


What’s your company’s mission?

Our mission is to empower educators to teach at their best. We want to give educators the resources and support they need so they can inspire our next generation of learners. Teaching can be isolating, each teacher coming up with lesson plans, resources and classroom ideas on their own and reinventing the wheel each time. We want to create a world where the expertise and wisdom of all teachers in the world is available to anyone, anywhere, anytime.


How does your company culture reflect its mission?

To achieve this mission, a tradition we’ve developed is regular classroom visits. Each year, everyone at TpT gets the opportunity to spend a couple of days at a school and observe what it’s like being a teacher. We sit in on their lessons and watch them teach. This helps us deeply understand and empathize with teachers’ experiences, see first-hand how the classroom is evolving with more technology, and gives us ideas on ways to better empower educators to teach at their best.


image via resy

Hospitality startup Resy’s mission statement is deeply integrated in their company culture. Director of Sales Development and Inside Sales Cara Felleman walked us through all of their company traditions inspired by the restaurant industry.


What’s your company’s mission?

Resy powers the world’s best restaurants using technology to imagine the future of hospitality.  


How does your company culture reflect its mission?

At Resy, each Friday we convene over lunch for “family meal” — a tradition adopted from restaurant culture, in which the staff eats together as a team before service begins. It provides us with an opportunity to connect with other departments during a shared meal, typically from one of our Resy partner restaurants.

Also, instead of traditional happy hours, Resy leverages our relationships within the hospitality industry to switch things up. We’ve hosted notable experts for classes and tastings — we’ve had a whiskey-and-cheese pairing by Macallan; a lesson in how to navigate a wine list by a seasoned sommelier; and a mixology class led by one of NYC’s finest cocktail bars!


image via smartling

SaaS company Smartling provides translation management software for companies looking to expand their global position. HR Director Beatriz Ruiz Albini explained how the company’s culture club helps follow through on their mission internally.


What’s your company’s mission?

Today, you can pick a playlist, book a flight and swipe left or right. It may seem like an ordinary experience, but the technology and thought that goes behind the user experience is extraordinary. Smartling enables companies to easily translate their content so that the products and services we've come to love are accessible in any language.


How does your company culture reflect its mission?

Smartling wouldn't be anywhere without our great people, who themselves represent many different nationalities and languages. We take training and individual success seriously, so we bring the team together every quarter in NYC for three days of training, individual coaching and social gatherings. This year, we started what we call “culture club.” It's now led by a rotating team of 20 individuals who come up with activities like trivia, bowling, pumpkin carving and a ping pong tournament. And finally, every summer the company comes together in Central Park for fun and games.


image via handshake

E-commerce platform Handshake is dedicated to helping B2B companies get closer to their customers, so it makes sense that the company itself prioritizes strong connections. Director of Account Management Monica Orrigo explained how they encourage an open and welcoming culture.


What’s your company’s mission?

Handshake is all about bringing easy B2B commerce everywhere. Our platform helps manufacturers and distributors be closer to their customers by taking orders and getting paid, both in person and online.


How does your company culture reflect its mission?

I am fortunate to be able to live out our mission by working closely with our customers to not only help them get closer to their customers, but also to use Handshake to drive more revenue for their business. That said, moving B2B online is no small feat, and requires Handshakers across the organization to work collaboratively every day to help our customers succeed.

To make sure we’ve got the strongest team, we lean on our company value of  “only hire ’em if we love ’em”. Our commitment to our customers and each other has helped to create a close-knit community in our Noho office where we work, win and even volunteer regularly together as a team.

Here at Handshake, we celebrate with weekly shout-outs, cowbells and beers at our office bar where some of the best ideas (and friendships) get their start!


Image via dailypay

Fintech company DailyPay gives users instant access to their funds. Director of Marketing Jaime McDougall explained how it’s this prioritization of clients that puts their mission into action.


What’s your company’s mission?

To give people their first steps towards financial security. Our product — instant access to earned wages — helps employees control the timing of their pay so they can meet their financial obligations in between paychecks. This allows employees to keep the thousand dollars in late fees and interest they would otherwise spend.


How does your company culture reflect its mission?

One of our company values is to put our clients first. One of the ways we do that is by always making sure that we display the best versions of ourselves. DailyPay has an obsessive training culture where leaders and subject matter experts inside and outside of the organization will host lunch and learns or training sessions aimed at coaching and teaching skills across the organization. I love that DailyPay is constantly trying to raise the standard.


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