Our mission is to help people lead a better life. We want to build a company that’s more than just a collection of cool apps and websites. We want to build something that can have an impact on the world.
Who are these people? Why do they work here? What do they do when they aren’t working? Why is your company better than all the rest?
These are some of the questions we at Elephant hope to answer.
Elephant was founded in 2001 by a small, highly motivated team of like-minded individuals who had many years of experience building web sites from scratch. We’re a privately held company with a strong commitment to our employees and their families. Our success has been built on the idea that happy employees create happy customers and are more productive than those who aren’t enjoying their work. We believe that technology should be used for good, not evil, and that you can have great ideas without being a jerk about it. We believe that the world is constantly changing, and that some things shouldn’t change along with it.
Elephant is an internationally recognized design and innovation company that works with leading U.S. and global companies to create compelling brands and digital experiences.
Elephant’s culture is unique. We’re a tight-knit group of people who are passionate about what we do. We’re pragmatic idealists who approach every problem with creativity and originality, but always with one foot grounded in reality. You’ll find us in our office building at the intersection of 7th and Chestnut streets, in the heart of the Philadelphia Art Museum complex, or exploring the city’s museums, parks, sports teams’ stadiums, music venues, restaurants and night life.
We attract a diverse group of people who tend to be more interested in what they can create than in simply doing their job description. We also have a lot of fun together as a team and individually. In other words, this is not your typical “corporate” environment.
We offer competitive salaries and benefits including 401k match, profit sharing bonus plan, paid vacation time and sick leave, flexible hours and working from home opportunities when needed.
In the early days of the internet, before the dot-com bubble burst and the word startup lost its sheen, a company called eGroups.com took over a small, one-story building in downtown Palo Alto, California. There were no desks or chairs at first — just boxes of computers. Before long it became clear that this was going to be one of those rare companies that changes everything.
One of the founders, Jim Barksdale, told us that “once we had the right people in place…we began to explode after we all realized that we could do something groundbreaking.”
What they did was create a way for people to communicate and collaborate online — before Facebook or Twitter. It was only one part of a much bigger idea, but it was a big part: “to make eGroups as ubiquitous as email.”
The company quickly grew to over 200 employees with revenue growing 30% month over month — until September 11th happened and put an end to their meteoric rise. As Barksdale explained: “I remember standing in front of my employees on September 12th and saying ‘what do you say we move on?’ We all knew we were onto something big and we were going to get back up and try again.”
We are a different kind of company. We are a group of people who want to be here, and we are trying to make the best product we can. This means that most important decisions are made by the people who are most directly involved. Of course, sometimes you have to go with your gut.
Trial and error is how humans get smarter. If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re probably not doing anything! The important thing is to be ready to learn from your mistakes, and more importantly, to be ready to recognize and avoid fatal errors before they kill you.
Doing things the right way is more important than doing the wrong thing. Here at [Company Name], everyone works really hard at doing things the best way possible, rather than taking the easy way out. This means working long hours without overtime or complaining about it. It means that instead of asking for permission when something needs to get done, people just do it.
“Be nice until it’s time not to be nice.” We like each other here at [Company Name]. We like each other so much that we can occasionally tell our bosses when they’re being jerks! Oftentimes this isn’t appreciated at first (because they’re still jerks) but after some time
A “manager” is a person who breaks a complex goal into simple tasks, and then makes sure that those tasks get done. (I’ll be using the word task and goal interchangeably.) A manager does not need to be a genius or super creative. He just needs to be more competent than the people he is managing.
Tasks are things like: “install the server”, “update the website”, “draw a cartoon for our blog”. Goals are things like: “sell 1000 copies of this game”, “make 50000 dollars this month”.
A goal can be broken down into many different tasks. For example, the goal “sell 1000 copies of this game” can be broken down into tasks like: “send out review copies”, “do an ad campaign”, or even just “build a fun game”.
All tasks have costs, and all tasks take time. So if you have one thousand dollars and one month to make your game sell well, you probably can’t send out review copies, do an ad campaign and build a fun game all at once. You have to choose which one you will do first. It might depend on what your strengths are; maybe you are best at making games, so you should do that first. Or it might depend
The Art of War is an ancient Chinese military treatise attributed to Sun Tzu, a high-ranking military general, strategist and tactician. The text is composed of 13 chapters, each dedicated to one aspect of warfare. The Art of War has been studied and applied throughout the ages by generals and businessmen alike. It has also been applied to various other aspects of life, including business and politics.
The text is somewhat terse and filled with historical and cultural references unfamiliar to the modern reader. It can be difficult to translate its ideas into a modern context without losing their essence (e.g., “The skillful leader subdues the enemy’s troops without any fighting; he captures their cities without laying siege to them” or “Throw your soldiers into positions whence there is no escape, and they will prefer death to flight.”). A number of modern commentators have tried to simplify the work by breaking it into smaller sections, or combining translations from different sources or writing their own commentary on it.
Tzu Sun never had the opportunity to meet Laozi or Buddha. In fact he lived several centuries after both sages had died. Nevertheless his book contains many passages which could be interpreted as being influenced by Taoism or Buddhism.””