Shake It Up: My First 30 Days at Digital Surgeons

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Written by Jaime Laufer,
• 4 min read

The path that I took to get to Digital Surgeons was a little unconventional.

I first worked with DS when their team of designers, developers and account managers rebranded my previous employer.  

They took a stale, antiquated brand and updated the look and feel, the voice, the website, and the marketing collateral. I watched as these creative geniuses familiarized themselves with the staff, values and vision, and made the aesthetic match the culture. It was an amazing process to watch and be part of. I began to imagine what it might be like to work at place where creativity and innovation are part of the DNA.  

After five years with that same company, I started going through the motions at work and my fiery passion started to burn out. I was no longer being challenged or flexing my creative muscles. The job that once got me out of bed in the morning became more about metrics and less about the people I helped every day.

I had to shake it up. I had to disrupt the humdrum and break out of my comfort zone. Enter Digital Surgeons.

Now, everyday, I get to work with all of those brilliant minds. Solutions, concepts, and opinions are openly shared.   From Lunch and Learns to Retros to Lightning Talks to Slack Exchanges; information and best practices are shared daily. Everyone is the teacher and everyone is the student. Case in point – every meeting is open. If you want to jump in a room and listen to client call or observe a roadmapping session, you can.  

Ideas can and should come from anywhere and anyone. With the flat organizational structure and open door policy, team members are encouraged to pitch their concepts to managers and owners and then make it happen. There is autonomy and freedom to own the project. No one is going to tell you what to do or how to do it. There will be support and mentorship throughout the process but there is always opportunity to take responsibility and step up.

The reason that my role, Director of People Operations, exists is to encourage change, help people grow and become future leaders, and to ensure that the values are woven into everyday life.  I have the opportunity to make a huge impact to the organization but how I choose to make that impact is up to me – which is both exciting and scary.  I was not given a road map or instruction manual, but what I am provided with is much greater. I am given an abundance of support, freedom and trust. There is confidence that I will ask questions, dig, pool resources and solve problems.

No one held the People Operations role before me. But as the company grows, DS sees the need for the position. The leadership team wants to create an environment that takes cares of its people. DS’ Founder Peter Sena and CEO David Salinas want every employee to understand that they are our agency’s greatest asset.  

They want to ensure that the team is involved but also has the opportunity to evolve.  The fact that DS sees the value in its employees and wants them to feel appreciated was enough to make me sign on the dotted line but add in all the perks like an open workspace, remote work policy, the anti-dress code, free snacks, free coffee and the dopest people — I was SOLD.

One of my very first tasks was to take every employee to lunch. The goal was to get to know each other and determine what’s working and where we can improve. When I asked Pete for clarification, the one piece of instruction he gave me was “tell them how much David and I love them.”   It was then, I knew I made the right decision.

Are you ready to shake it up? Check out our open positions.