Lotame Solutions, Inc.

Lotame Solutions, Inc.

Columbia, MD

www.lotame.com

Grade: A

SummaryFamily-culture, P2P Employee award program, “You are your own CEO,” great perks and people-first atmosphere, health/nap room, hackathons and solid training.
Intro: We like to call ourselves the “Lota-Family.” Based on our belief that you have to keep pursuing new interests and make time for a healthy and active personal life in order to be your best at work, we put our people first, and place emphasis on a happy work-­life balance.

Impact statements: 

  • After starting out running client media campaigns, then moving up the ranks of the Client Success Team for the last five years, one person decided to make a big switch and is now our current VP of Product.
  • There is no downside to making our employees smarter—it is beneficial to everyone.
  • Managers have biweekly Manager Training meetings.
  • We have a Peer-to-Peer Employee award program, where any employee can nominate another for anything they would like to recognize them for.
  • We give people the flexibility and freedom to define their own hours and attend to their families and personal lives. Our CEO, for example, leaves early on Tuesdays and Thursdays during basketball season to coach his daughter’s basketball team!
  • “You are your own CEO,” meaning if you don’t like the way something is done, you can find an alternative solution and propose it. People are encouraged to accompany their challenges with an idea ready to resolve it.
  • At our annual Hackathon, our engineering team takes 48 hours to focus on work outside the “normal” course of business. Anyone can suggest an idea, and the 48 hour window drives quick, competitive thinking among teams of people who don’t normally work together.
  • Lotame is more than just a technology company. We are a technology company with humanity; a family.
  • We put our people first.

Compensation:

Contributions to their teams, their commitment to build continuous value for themselves in the market at large, and the success trajectory they’re defining and building for themselves within the company (which we go over in regular evaluations).

Advancement Opportunities:

There has been a lot of movement both sideways (between departments) and up the ladder at Lotame, depending on how people want to grow. In the past few months, we have seen some of the following examples: After starting out running client media campaigns, then moving up the ranks of the Client Success Team for the last five years, one person decided to make a big switch and is now our current VP of Product.

The former VP of Product is now VP of Market Solutions. Members of the Client Success Team have also come from elsewhere in many cases; sometimes they were Implementation folks, other times Technical Account Managers, Sales Engineers and more. We make room for movement and growth to ensure Lotame employees find a place where they’re happy, learning new skills and being challenged.

Training opportunities:

All Lotame managers have biweekly Manager Training meetings, where they share learnings and lessons on effective management. We also hold continuous webinars with other partners and experts in both our own industry and other topics. The goal is for people to spread and absorb knowledge, not just internally but also across sectors, because there is no downside to making our employees smarter—it is beneficial to everyone.

Medical benefits:

Our benefits include heavily company-­‐subsidized medical, dental and vision coverage (choice of three plans), Healthcare and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts, an Employee Assistance Plan, company paid Short-­‐term/Long-­‐term Disability Insurances, company paid life insurance, supplemental life insurance and supplemental health/income protection insurance.

Special accommodations:

We aren’t micro-managers; as long as the work is done and team members feel supported, we trust our employees to be responsible adults and to manage their time as they need. Some people work remotely, and top performers are regularly rewarded with spot bonuses, gift cards and other gifts outside of our regular compensation and incentive plans.We also provide support and flexibility for time off and complex schedules, especially for those with proven track records of success.

Community service/charitable causes

Cause

Action

Children’s hospital in Maryland

Every year we hold an arts & crafts drive where one of our employees was treated as a child for Childhood Leukemia.

Toys for Tots

Toy Drive

Measuring satisfaction:

We conduct employee engagement surveys and follow-­up “pulse” surveys to measure employee engagement. We also conduct exit interviews for employees who exit voluntarily, for feedback on their Lotame experience.

Creative meeting places:

New environments are great for incidental inspiration!

Museum for Jewish Heritage

Diamond Horseshoe at the Paramount Hotel

MEET on Chrystie Street

Edgewood Country Club in NJ

Bowling

Dave & Buster’s

Chelsea Piers

Perks:

Lots of our perks come from feedback and requests!

Free snacks, drinks, a beer fridge

An in-­‐ office kegerator (another product of a past Hackathon)

Local health club discounts

Chili Cook-off

St. Patrick’s Day Event

Pre-­‐Thanksgiving Potluck Lunch

Summer picnic

Winter/year end event

Massage therapists onsite to give free massages

Fun:

It all depends on how the person likes to unwind, but we give them options: A health/nap room, ping-­‐pong, foosball, and Xbox and a Wii. (We also have books for the readers, in case you wondered.)

Collaboration tools:

At first glance, our MD office may seem quiet, especially compared to the hustle and bustle of NY. But there’s a lot of chatter happening behind the scenes (virtually!) via HipChat, which connects our employees around the world. We also are also big fans of Google Drive, which we use to drive collaboration for pretty much everything we use—from RFPs to press releases to sales collateral.

How corporate vision is communicated:

This all comes from the top down, and CEO Andy Monfried is great at communicating where we are going as a company and what we are focusing on. He does this during our monthly all-hands meetings (where the whole company around the globe calls in), and by sending emails to the entire organization whenever he wants to share an update from a client or an anecdote to encourage the team. There are constant connection points with people; managers are encouraged to communicate with their teams weekly, and check in on a personal level.

Empowering employees:

Our “You are your own CEO” catchphrase encourages people to make their own decisions and provide solutions. We are a transparent company and our execs have open doors; motivating them to work things out on their own before coming to management leads to personal growth, better leadership skills across the board and the assurance that they aren’t relying on the validation of just a few people to get things done. Ultimately this is a smart long-­‐term strategy for a company that wants to stick around for awhile, and it also produces more mature, highly capable employees with diverse skillsets.

One of our current contests revolves around how we work as a company to procure client case studies. We’re offering financial incentives to teams in which someone brings a customer forward who is willing to disclose a case study, with the financial reward changing based on how long the case study takes to complete.

We have a Peer-to-Peer Employee award program, where any employee can nominate another for anything they would like to recognize them for. This can include acknowledging someone who helped out with a particular project, or someone who works tirelessly every day and deserves a little love. These awards are shared with the entire company on a regular basis.

We also recognize employees who have work anniversaries at Lotame, and other employees that any manager would like to recognize, during our monthly all-­‐hands meeting. Often this recognition is made personally by the CEO.

We have an open floor plan that allows easy collaboration between employees. Those with offices have open door policies, and everyone is encouraged to speak to whomever they need to, whether it’s an engineer, an account manager or an executive.

Our CEO has an open door and welcomes ideas from people at any level. We value transparency and love to work collaboratively. There is a saying at Lotame: “You are your own CEO,” meaning if you don’t like the way something is done, you can find an alternative solution and propose it. People are encouraged to accompany their challenges with an idea ready to resolve it. That helps us become better as a company; every opinion matters, and great ideas can come from anywhere.

As a tech company, one of our other favorite ways to effect change is through our annual Hackathon, when our engineering team takes 48 hours to focus on work outside the “normal” course of business. Anyone can suggest an idea, and the 48-­‐hour window drives quick, competitive thinking among teams of people who don’t normally work together. Some of the best aspects of our platform were born in hackathons, and many came from people who don’t work in engineering!

Ensuring well-being:

We offer flexible working hours so people can take care of themselves and their families first, because we understand that team members with a healthy home life are more effective at work. This includes providing adequate time off to deal with any loss or death in the family, “adequate” being determined by the individual who is going through the loss.

Oftentimes our CEO is the first one to hear about an employee who is going through any sort of tough time, such as a death in the family, and he responds by calling those people directly to check on them. During those times, we also send meals to employees who are grieving in lieu of flowers to help them get through the tough days and take care of themselves.

A healthy work/life balance is critical to Lotame’s values, so we give people the flexibility and freedom to define their own hours and attend to their families and personal lives. Our CEO, for example, leaves early on Tuesdays and Thursdays during basketball season to coach his daughter’s basketball team!

We believe our employees are adults and they can set their own hours. As long as they get their work done, we support flexible hours as they need them.

Since we are a global company, we have people working all over the world, so it’s critical to build flexibility into our model in order to work together effectively. This can go both ways: Sometimes, someone in NY will be on the phone at 9pm with folks in Singapore and London to get a task completed. On the other side of the equation, parents who have daytime childcare responsibilities might be found online at 10pm for their “work day.”

Lotame has an unlimited vacation/PTO policy. Our employees work hard and deserve time off, and we encourage them to take as much as needed so that they remain valuable, productive and happy team members.

Team Work:

From our roots as a start-­‐up, every department at Lotame is used to working with many others to get things accomplished. We work hard to discourage silos as we scale.

For a recent RFP, we included sales, marketing, sales engineers, product and engineering from the very beginning; they all collaborated on a single document simultaneously to get the job done and meet our deadline. Our open door policy and transparency carries over to our work style—we love engaging teams across competences, so people aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeves to help out on new tasks when asked.

Longevity:

We’ve only been in business for about 10 years, but our average tenure is about 2.6 years. Two employees will celebrate 10-­‐year anniversaries this year and over 20% of our employees will have tenures of 5 years or more years in 2016.

Closing company statements: Lotame is more than just a technology company. We are a technology company with humanity; a family. Our mission is focused on humanizing advertising—that is, bringing a human 1:1 touch to the very impersonal world of digital advertising, and that carries over into the emphasis we put on treating our employees as humans. We put our people first.

Back to the entire list of TMCnet 2016 Tech Culture Award winners.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *