How This Seattle Company Encourages Employee Authenticity

August 11, 2020

At authentication and authorization platform Auth0, company culture is centered around a concept the team refers to as N+1>N. The idea behind the equation stems from employees’ approach to intersectionality in the workplace: a source of continuous improvement and experimentation. 

Perceptions of gender, sexual orientation and parental status are constantly shifting as America’s workforce evolves, and so is the degree to which people are showing up to work as their authentic selves –– which, in the long run, is beneficial for both the employee and the employer. A 2016 Harvard Business Review study that examined how long it typically takes employees to feel like “themselves” at work found that “the more of themselves that people shared with others, the better their workplace experience.” 

For other employers hoping to embrace their employees’ unique lived experiences, Auth0 has a few tips. 

Start with creating and sharing platforms and resources to allow team members to express their full identities. According to Auth0 Director of Internal Communications and Culture Jenna Mason-Steinberg, the more visible that ongoing support is the better. 

 

Auth0
Auth0
Jenna Mason-Steinberg
Director of Internal Communications and Culture

How does Auth0 approach intersectionality in the workplace?

At Auth0, our DEI initiatives are shaped by the belief that there is value and power in hiring and nurturing teams of people from diverse backgrounds, beliefs and human experiences. As a remote-centric company since day one, we have the freedom to hire without geographic limitations. This natural diversity is then amplified by a culture where every person can show up as their authentic self, speak their truth, learn, develop and grow at a global scale.

Our core values and the behaviors we reward empower our employees to create and participate in various affinity groups that foster inclusion and belonging. We offer a benefits and rewards package including but not limited to flexible paid vacation time, generous parental leave, mental well-being benefits, gender transition coverage, career development opportunities and training. 

 

What has been the most impactful action your company has taken to create a more inclusive and equitable work environment for all employees, and why? 

Our remote-centric culture includes and welcomes people who are not in our physical offices. This has given us the ability to hire for talent, not location. We focus not only on recruiting diverse talent but also fostering an inclusive work environment where each person feels valued and included. We engage employees through programs that span all levels, regions and departments on topics such as career pathing, recognition and rewards, and giving. 

Our culture is centered around three specific values of caring, getting things done as a team and a value we call “N+1>N,” which is all about continuous improvement and experimentation. 

 

What “N + 1 > N” Means at Auth0

  • We embrace data-driven experiments to gain insights into our business.
  • If we are not making mistakes, we’re not making progress.
  • We question the status quo constructively.
  • Our personal and team growth is a result of asking for help, learning something new every day and taking action instead of standing on the sidelines.

 

What role do your employees play in leading or supporting DEI efforts? 

We’ve put strategies in place to ensure that diversity is top of mind for employees at all levels, regions and departments. We also invest real time and money toward that commitment with our DEI taskforce to focus on policies and practices that enable support and inclusion. Employees are empowered to create and lead employee resource and social interest groups focused on professional development, creating supportive internal communities and giving back to the communities where we work and play. A few examples include Auth0 Gives, Auth0 Pride, our Black Employee Network (BEN), our Auth0 Culture Advisory committee, our Women’s Leadership group, Club Parenting and Club Mental Wellness. We also have a #diversityandinclusion Slack channel. 

Since our inception, we’ve aimed to create a transparent culture that fosters free expression and provides a supportive network among our employees.

 

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