Mindfire has a quirky culture.
In building a "I work because I choose to" environment, we are the only organization where every single day throughout the year is an official holiday. Anyone who doesn't wish to work is paid salary anyway - but mysteriously, work has never suffered.
In building a "I work at Mindfire because I choose to" environment, we are a rare software organization in India that does not enforce bonds (2-3 year bonds are common) of any kind.
Flexibility is visible in daily work. There is no timing followed at office, no attendance register or swipe cards to measure time - people adapt schedule as per personal preference and team/client dependency, ensuring that work is done.
Flexibility is visible in life events as well, both joyous and grave. Our unique Unlimited Maternity Leave allows new mothers to rejoin work at will after childbirth. Our Work From Home allows people to travel and work, or look after children, support sick family members, and so on. Some people permanently work from home, due to family or location needs. Our Wedding Leave allows newly-weds to enjoy their time (while it lasts!). Our unique Unlimited Medical Leave means people who have been hospitalized due to accidents or other medical condition, do not need to worry about work.
People are young and have fun, both at work and outside it. Strangely, the organization does not do artificial fun things - "let's have a party to motivate people". Instead, people get together and have their own real fun, just like any bunch of friends do!
Everybody is helpful and friendly. That's probably because we have an environment of collaboration - negative competition is not encouraged among people. People helping people get things done.
To support collaboration, we have invested in open seating layout and a 100% laptop environment, which supports dynamic grouping for internal mobility and collaboration.
No equipment will help mobility without free minds. There are no boundaries among teams. People move across teams permanently, for a couple months or weeks or days or hours - or a quick couple minutes chat on something. Minds meet as per needs.
As an anti-factory, we do not want to commoditize people. We follow the workshop model of having out-spoken people with creative instincts and that ever-so-slight weirdness. This means a vibrant place that is always on the verge of anarchy, living on the edge for 13 years now.
Leaders exist to serve people in going about their work. But there is no manager to manage people. People are un-managed because they are self-managed.
All this is supported by our organization structure. We do not have designations, and we do not have an org-chart. We do not see ourselves as a hierarchical tree like in traditional organizations - we are modeled as a network of nodes. Each of us is a node and we link to other nodes in a mesh. Neither are we a static network - we are a living breathing pulsating network with entries and exits and interaction links lighting up and dimming down depending on work at hand. Some links exist for years, others exist for a couple minutes or hours when working together on something. Modern technology enables such a living network of human nodes to work together, and this is the organization structure for the future, and this is what we have.
We use technology to be efficient. Requests, needs and problems of all kind are publicly brought up and promptly solved in an internal forum without too much ado and elaborate processes.
We use technology to be democratic. Things that leadership is uncertain about or which are best decided on by people, are put up for polling.
We use technology to be transparent. Everyone knows every important thing going on in the organization, and is updated with health of the organization.
We are a group of people organized together with a common goal. We have organized ourselves together for work, thus the organization exists for work. It is this centrality of work which is our holiest cow.
We exist together to work.
(also read about what we do and don't do, the Agile methods we follow or the professionalism of our people - things which build the best in off-shore small-team software development)