Creative + Innovative
Google wants to make all information accessible, we want to make all knowledge accessible.
The evolution of social networking has really moved towards self-promotion. You don’t post anything unless it’s good news or perfect. You find vacation photos on Facebook and sterilized resumes on LinkedIn, but no one shares their struggles or mentions job loss. While the internet has brought us together in many ways, it has also made people less willing to show vulnerability. Our goal is to help people develop networks that they can actually use, not just a network with lots of random connections. Your friends from home, former colleagues, and old classmates have so much knowledge and so do their networks but you can’t access it -- it’s a crying shame. It’s an age-old problem and we finally have a solution. We’ve already processed over 700 million emails helping people identify their networks and connect them to those who can help. When you need advice about fundraising, inspiration for an art project, or help hiring engineers, we’ll put you in touch with people you already (almost) know. Learn more and try it out today.
Team is Diverse
We’re pretty representative of the diversity of your network.
Everyone at BrightCrowd is incredibly passionate about our product. Our mission brings together a spectrum of races, gender, age, and experience. Andreas (co-founder and CTO) is quite literally a rocket scientist (he built satellites for his thesis in Aeronautics and Astronautics) and T.J. (co-founder and CEO) has degrees in Psychology, Law, and Business. Sophie, our machine learning engineer is originally from China and went to Duke to earn her Masters in Computer Science. Jim, our Head of Product, earned his CS degree from Yale, worked as a senior software engineer at General Electric, went back to school to get his MBA, and then worked at Groupon as a product manager. Kat is our front end engineer and visual designer. She has a fine arts background from Wake Forest, and was working in a sculpture studio when she decided to learn how to code. She now has an incredible visual eye with the ability to implement and build out her designs.
We bring diverse set of perspectives to the table making it not only an incredibly rich environment to work in, but also enables us to build the best product for a diverse audience.
Impressive Team Members
We have the best team members and board of advisors to get the job done.
We talked about the impressive backgrounds and work experiences of our team members already, so we wanted to highlight our advisors and investors as well. BrightCrowd isn’t the first business that our co-founders have started or built, and we have a remarkable group of individuals supporting our team. Not only do we have fantastic terms with our investors, allowing us to provide substantial equity to our employees, but we also have tremendous experience in social and professional network platforms. The expertise of our investors and advisors are exactly the right people to help us use machine learning on email to build out powerful automatically updating social networks:
- Head of Product, Facebook Messenger
- EVP of Yahoo Communications (Yahoo Mail/Messenger)
- Founder Plaxo
- Founder of BranchOut
- Co-Founder of Eventbrite
- Head of Growth for DropBox
- Senior Executive at Facebook (also helped grow Twitter and Quora)
- President of Stanford Research Institute (SRI International)
We are constantly in communication, it’s as if our remote workers are just in the other room.
Despite have a distributed team, we work closely together and continuously exchange ideas. Our open communication describes our day-to-day practices as well as how we collaborate to develop our product. We do an all-hands meeting every 6 weeks and fly our remote employees out from New York. Everyone contributes to our roadmap and 50% of our all-hands is a team-wide brainstorm. Our product sprints typically involve 2 days of brainstorming, 2 days of prototyping, 2 days of testing, and then we all meet to discuss what the implication of this new development is for each person’s role and what we need to do to execute it, then we implement.
Committed to Personal Growth
There is always something new to learn.
Everyone at BrightCrowd has a natural curiosity and thirst for knowledge. We are constantly sharing papers and interesting reads on Slack, and our team dynamic is one that centers around a cross-pollination of information. The desire to improve and grow has to start with you, the individual. We hope to continue hiring people who have that innate desire and our promise to you is to support and nourish it. Attend meetups. Take Udacity courses. We do, and hope you’ll join us.
Bringing together curious minds creates a unique team dynamic. While we don’t come from the same place or have the same educational backgrounds, the common denominator across the company is being able to leverage the knowledge of others. (Yes, this is quite literally our product too.)
We’re not fans of the stereotypical startup culture where it’s a badge of courage to work all night and play ping pong at 2am.
We all have lives and families, (Mike and T.J. have young children). The expectation is that everyone works hard roughly between 9:30am to 6pm, and then goes home. When you’re well rested and well balanced, you’re that much more productive. Besides, if you just code all day, code all night, go to bed, and then start coding first thing in the morning, you didn’t gain any insight. We never work past 8pm or on weekends, though of course, there are times when people are really into their work and do do that. When you care about something it becomes a part of you and isn’t just work. We hope you bring that passion but also remember to enjoy the other parts of your life too.
Eats Lunch Together
Eating lunch together is really just about enjoying incredible company.
We work out of a suite connected to T.J.’s garage in Redwood City and have two team members (Mike and Kat) working from NYC. Our California-based team always eats together. We jump in the car or walk into town to get lunch or will sometimes bring food to eat outside together. It’s not uncommon for our work conversations to bleed into this time, but we also like learning about what each of us are doing together, what we’re excited about, and what we’re learning. We value our friends and families, and want everyone to bring their whole selves to work.
“Measure twice and cut once” instead of “move fast and break things”.
We are thoughtful in deciding what to build and how features will be implemented. This means talking to our users and weighing the potential impact between various changes. Once that is done though, we are all about shipping as quickly as possible. “Don’t ship a product that you love because it means you’ve waited too long,” is our mantra when it comes to development: we’re all about getting it out there and getting feedback as soon as possible. While we’re thoughtful in planning, we believe in engineering velocity and deploy to production daily.