How We Work

How We Work at LivingOS

During our remote retreat, we talked about our vision and distilled the following principles from a month of work. Today I’d like to share some of our principles with you!

Idealism

  1. We are a nonprofit. We started this business to change the world.
  2. We will devote time and attention to bring in positive social change.
  3. We invest in LivingOS from day one. We bring in revenue and invest all of them back to LivingOS University.

Long Term Strategy

  1. We create quality content that will stay relevant for the next 5–10 years.
  2. We help our users through awesome content, talk shows, podcasts, workshops, and coaching.
  3. We stand for ideas that allow people to fundamentally achieve their full potential and live happier for all ages.

Visionary Leadership

  1. We take bold actions. We try new ideas even if we are unsure about the outcome.
  2. We lead through actions. We do the behaviors and attitudes we expect.
  3. We bring in the best people and let them do their things. We know you are capable of much more than you think you are.
  4. We have high expectations and will coach you to reach the higher version of yourself.

Entrepreneurship

  1. We understand that great people start their dream companies. We will help you achieve this dream.
  2. We provide training and coaching to help you grow. You’re free to learn from us and then move on when you’re ready. We respect entrepreneurship.

System Thinking

  1. Build once, done forever.
  2. We approach undefined problems and solve them creatively. We will turn these learnings into SOP and share them across the team.
  3. We write memos and scale these best practices across the team.
  4. We always amplify each other’s work and would showcase great content in multiple forms.

Hypotheses Testing

  1. We live in a world where instant feedback is readily available. Try to get as much feedback from the audience in the early process.
  2. We interview users and run experiments to see what parts of the message resonate the most with users.
  3. We write down our initial hypotheses and test them with experiments. We double down on the successes and would immediately address the parts that fall flat.

Transparent Communication

  1. We create a safe space so people feel free of judgment and ego. We have your best interest and would give critical feedback to help you grow.
  2. We would rather overcommunicate than under-communicate.
  3. We seek to understand before being understood.
  4. We would share lots of comments on your work.

Teamwork

  1. We constantly bounce ideas off each other and coordinate on big projects.
  2. We listen to new ideas and proactively seek new feedback.
  3. We collaborate rather than compete.
  4. We value every one of us. None of us can make this vision happen alone.

Charlene’s User Manual

I would love to tell you more about how I work.

My Nature

  • I have a strong bias for action.
  • I love to optimize everything.
  • I am very optimistic.
  • I can be impatient at times.
  • I generally have high energy, but sometimes I overwork myself.

My Core Values

Individual: Integrity, Happiness, Perseverance

Group: Openness, Fairness, Empowerment

Motivation: Impact, Transformation, Innovation

Triggers: When people drop the ball, When people are not self-motivated

Quirks: I am a very picky person. I am an organizing geek. I have high standards for most things in life.

Qualities of People That I Value

  • Open, honest and ethical
  • Hard-working
  • Abundance mindset
  • Strong communicator — clear and concise
  • Take ownership and follow-through
  • High-performing — someone who wants to be better every day

Workstyle

  • Strive for win-win: I want to help you succeed. We will do a career coaching session in our first month of working together — your awesome work, your decision-making principles, your ambitions for the future, etc. These help me know where you are in terms of personal development, interests, and ambitions with respect to longer-term plans. We will create a plan on how we make sure you get the support to accomplish what you need.
  • Trust: I love to delegate. I don’t want to know every single detail of the projects. Instead, I want to make sure we are heading in the right direction and delivering results. When I think things are off track, I’ll tell you my concern. hat said, when I am new to a project, I will get involved in details and be more hands-on. This enables me to better help you going forward.
  • Coaching: I like to help you solve your problems. I expect you to make decisions without me. If you come to me, I’ll usually ask “What do you think?” and help you decide. Furthermore, I want you to 1) Double down on your strengths 2) Understand how your work fits into the big picture 3) Don’t be afraid to ask for help 4) Speak up if you have an idea or question.
  • Accountable: I take action items really seriously and I expect you to know what yours are, when they are due, and get them done. I don’t like chasing them but I do notice when things slip. It’s fine to renegotiate deadlines, but I want you to tell me sooner rather than later. I dislike being caught last-minute only to know that there are more things to be done. I encourage you to anticipate risks and call them out at the earliest sign.
  • MVP and Iteration: I am a big fan of testing big ideas with MVP. I will always push you to think about: “What learnings can best inform our decisions?” and “What’s the fastest way to get those learnings?”
  • Beginning with the end in mind: I like having a clear end-goal: “What problem are we trying to solve?” I am flexible on how we get there, as long as we’re headed the right direction. I don’t marry myself to specific solutions. I expect you to do the same.
  • Time Management: By the way, I am often overly generous with my time and say yes too often to things. If you see this, please let me know. Though I love helping people, I want to make sure I spend time on things that I am in a unique position to do. That’s the way I scale my impact. Help keep me honest.

Communication Style

  • Email: I expect most of our conversation to take place outside of email, via direct messages. Keep your email short. Clearly state what you’d like me to do and why it is important in TLDR. I like FYI emails and I’d appreciate it if you label them clearly in writing. I’ll know it’s for my information but not requiring a response. I’ll do the same for you. FYI = no actions required. I have aggressive filters in my Inbox. If you want to make sure I read an email, please label “ATTENTION.”
  • Feedback: I LOVE it. I love to give it and receive constructive feedback. I am direct and critical at times. Know that it’s because I personally care about and how I can help you grow as fast as possible. I prefer real-time feedback because that’s the most effective one, so please do the same. We are in this to get better together.
  • Direct Messages: If it’s urgent, feel free to text me at any time. If we are having more than three text exchanges on one topic, I want to jump on a 5-min voice call to clarify the details. Feel free to beat me to it and recommend it first. I respect your time, so I will only take meetings with clear needs and agenda. My default meeting time is 15min. If it’s a long-term strategy and not time-sensitive, I would like you to wait for our weekly 1:1.
  • 1:1s: I’m a big fan of sharing 1:1 doc to track our agendas, actions, and goals. Use weekly 1:1s for items better discussed verbally (personal growth, challenges, strategy). Don’t use 1:1s for status updates.
  • Team Meetings: I view these as a celebration, knowledge-sharing, and decision-making forums. I expect you to be prepared and to actively participate.
  • Updates: I share daily progress and weekly memos with my team. I want you to do the same. I find that well-documentation pays off in the long term. Feel free to choose the format that works best for you. I put my daily learnings in Notion and send out weekly memos in email.
  • Documentation: I like well-documented plans, especially workflow templates in Notion. I am a big fan of “don’t do the same thing twice.” Don’t waste time on presentation. I like to review concrete docs, mocks, and data points. Very few meetings require a presentation.

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