Human Hodgepodge and a Culture of Hustle
Andrew Tuzson – Founder / CEO
I work my ass off. My day typically begins without the use of an alarm clock at the wee hours of 4:00AM. I slowly rub my tired eyes and meander my 33 year old ass down the stairs to satiate my ever growing caffeine addiction. Once the sweet nectar hits my lips, I fire up my MacBook and take a peek at what’s in store for me for that day. The morning solitude is an opportunity for me to not only get shit done, but to reflect on what we are building, how are we growing, and the cult that is Evol Empire.
I say cult for two reasons. First and foremost, we are a tight knit group and we are stupid selective of who we let into our circle of nerdom. Second, we are a group of weirdos who work hard to play hard. The amount of projects that our teams juggle is insanely impressive. Because of the Agile methodologies that we have applied to not only our web design efforts, but our marketing deliverables has allowed us to hack and scale our agency without needing to blow our doors open to anyone who wants to rock an Evol jersey.
Leading by Example
So, how the hell do we attract the talent that we have been able to hire and retain? Shit, that’s a great question. Our work speaks for itself and to be honest as hell, I have removed myself from the screening process. I am way to easy to get through. If you give me a subtle whiff that you are digging what we are building, I am ready to extend you an offer. I am a lay down and unfortunately, it led to a few bad hires in the early days of Evol.
So, in keeping spirit with celebrating our failures, a methodology that we fully embrace at Evol, I looked at how I could spin that into a positive. How could I use this shortcoming to grow? My leadership team is comprised of some of the most badass people I’ve ever met and I trust them to the nth degree. I have off-boarded the screening and interview process to my leadership team and the results have been rad as hell.
Hire Slow and Fire Fast
I have heard this phrase countless times at conferences and in the pages of “motivational bullshit book XYZ.” This really hit home for me when I finally cut the cord with a few of the bad apples from the early epoch of Evol Empire. By cutting those who are bringing down the organizations’s productivity, quality, and output, we have increased the expectation and standard of excellence. We have also demonstrated that we don’t tolerate bullshit. Our culture is incredibly laid back and I am so proud of what we have built. That being said, at the end of the day we are a company that manages an insane amount of money for out clients – so come to work, get your shit done, and be proud of the work you put in the marketplace.
I also fully believe in the mindset of leading by example. This is exactly why I roll out of bed at the hours that I do every morning. I could very easily boot my PS4 instead of my MacBook. I could work on finishing my book. I could make some serious progress with committing Japanese to memory – which is tough as shit btw. But I choose to be a force multiplier every single day. I choose to set the tone for our agency. I choose to work my ass off, because guess who notices that? My team, my clients, and other folks who work in my industry. To create a culture of hustle, you have the be the shining beacon of hustle yourself. Stop making excuses. Stop making yourself seem busy. Get up, grind, get shit done, and be fucking awesome. You are the only human who can influence your output.