At YC, partners are our version of executives and our engineering team works directly with them. One of the partners runs the software team at a high level and the team of 4 reports to him. Different partners focus on different parts of the organization, so depending on what kind of software you’re building (e.g. admissions or financial software), you’ll work with different people (e.g. the admissions team or our CFO and the finance team, etc.). The software team members do weekly 1-1s to talk about how things are going and to identify areas for improvement, but ultimately, our team is very flat, which allows each person to run with their ideas and projects. People at YC tend to be independent and self motivated. Once you’re assigned a project, you have the opportunity to get creative and work with your customers to spec, prototype, build, release and promote it. When you have an idea about how to improve YC, you’re encouraged to pursue it.
1 Open Positions
We have one manager, the owner of mindmatters, but he does not interfere with engineering decisions. He simply sets the expectations and goals for engineering teams and handles the client contract. These are agile contracts, not fixed-price contracts, so he never sets expectation the team cannot fulfill. The team is then fully responsible for building out the project and working with the customer(s) on a daily basis. Customers are integrated into the development process, so engineers can focus on delivering their customers the highest value product.
There is no “ladder climbing” at mindmatters. As one software developer on our team (Milena) describes it, “Everyone contributes to both their team’s success as well as the overall success of the company. We don’t view ourselves as being above or below our teammates, or needing to climb any ladder because we’re already allowed to participate in every aspect of our company. I personally find having so much respect and trust to be rewarding in itself.”
1 Open Positions
We believe everyone should have access to all team members, including our CEO. In fact, we expect our new hires to reach out to our CEO (and anyone else) to ask whatever questions they have. We pride ourselves on being open and friendly, and given how distributed we are, this openness is baked into how we work.
Our meetings are always open and no topics are off limits. We encourage all opinions, concerns, and ideas to be shared – from our most recent hires to our more tenured employees. We don’t view our leads and points of contact among offices as managers, but rather facilitators of open communication.
We plan to stay flat for as long as it works for our company. We’re currently 30 employees in total, with 18 being software engineers (7 of whom are based in Barcelona).
As a small team, we don’t have a need for managers. That said, some of us do own particular functions: Gabriel owns all social media and marketing, we have one designer who owns all of GoodNotes’ designs, and each engineer owns one component of our product (i.e. import/export or tools).
We adopted Basecamp’s structure and work in 6-week cycles which are comprised of three 2-week sprints. Anyone on the team, regardless of role or tenure, can lead an initiative.
Want to List Your Company?
Submit a team profile!
Select 8 Values
Contact me (Lynne 👋)
Qualify Your Values
Reach Thousands of Devs
Find Value-Aligned Candidates
Have Meaningful Initial Conversations
Don't Fill Roles, Hire Teammates
You can post as many job openings as you want.