Welcome to my blog!
Disclaimer: All current blog posts are written for Organizational Culture class as part of the Design MBA at California College of the Arts. I am a current second year student eager to learn about Design Strategy and Business Management. Have any questions? Feel free to reach out!
About Rock Climbing
At the age of 26 I discovered rock climbing, a sport I had never really heard of until a friend invited me to a climbing gym. I have practiced sports for as long as I can remember and recognize to be an adrenaline junkie so trying an extreme sport was not uncommon for me but I had no idea what I was getting into. Over the course of the next few years, I would spend most of my free time at the climbing gym or looking for outdoor rock climbing areas. This sport became my passion and stress reliever and it also taught me three important lessons that I think strongly apply to workplace culture. 

I remember day one walking into the gym and being completely overwhelmed by the space and the people practicing it. If you have ever been to a climbing gym then you understand the sense of humility that these spaces make you feel. That day I tried climbing some boulders and some top rope and although I was not great at it, I was instantly hooked. I soon discovered that failing and trying again was a big part of the sport and that there was no shame in failure but it was rather seen as a sense of commitment and respect.

I visited the climbing gym a few times and finally decided to pay for my first membership. Not long had passed before I was climbing 3 or more times per week and was learning every day something new about the sport. I became very fond about sports climbing, a style of climbing in which your team is key. You choose people who will climb with you and who will always be on the other side of the rope to catch you if you fall. In sports climbing, trust in yourself and your teammates makes the difference when trying to achieve a goal.

The final lesson I learned was about passion. I remember climbing outdoors for the first time and feeling terrified while being in complete awe hooked to a rope, 30 meters above the ground with some of the most amazing views I have seen. This experience made me want to set climbing goals and I was soon wanting to climb “La Grieta”, a route 30 meters tall that follows a crack on the corner of a rock. I don’t know how many times I walked up the mountain with my gear to try to achieve my objective but I do know, passion made the difference because at that point achieving this goal was everything I wanted.  
Culture
Complaining about our current situation seems to be a common thing for adults and if we think about it, our work takes up a big part of who we are and what we do. We graduate high school and select a career that will define our next years. It will lead us to our first internship and then our first job and then another and another. What happens to people who graduate from something they are not passionate about? Far too many times I have heard people say that they studied business administration because they didn't know what else to choose or that they went into engineering because they thought they could find a good job that would sustain them.
Did we all choose our careers for the right reasons? In my case, I chose industrial design and it taught me a lot about the world and gave me possibilities to develop as a visual designer which I am more interested in. We could argue that visual and industrial design are not too different from one another yet, I spent years working jobs that I was not passionate about. 
I recently heard a podcast that talked about work that is light and heavy, referring to projects that spark joy and excitement as the light work and projects that feel heavy and we avoid doing as the heavy work. Think about what would happen if we worked light jobs and I don't mean jobs that are easy for us but jobs that are enjoyable and that bring light to our universe. 
I am a big believer that people should work jobs they are passionate about because we perform better that way. In the book "The Rise of Superman", Steven Kotler makes reference to a quote by Howard Thurman that says “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive. Because what the world needs most is more people who have come alive.” I can’t help but think where we would be as a society if more people dedicated their lives to do things they are passionate about.
Who am I?
In this blog, I write about culture work as seen from the lens of a freelancer, who has spent most of her career trying to build her business from the bottom up. A young yet well prepared professional who spent her early years working corporate jobs to learn the in and outs of business. A woman finding her way around companies, offices, education and side jobs to be able to create her dream job.
As a freelancer who is growing into a small business owner, I am intrigued by culture and how our personal experience affects the way we work with and around people. I am fascinated by culture, language and diversity and how these factors affect the way we relate to one another. I am passionate about collaboration and believe deeply that people who take on positions that they enjoy, execute wildly better than those who do not.
I give you the perspective of an outsider who continues to search for her place as a designer who is interested in business and has worked in vastly different industries. This blog shows the process of trying, failing and trying again to find a place that allows for experimentation, dynamism, collaboration and mostly, the possibility to help others find their place too.
Establishment Labs - Values
​​​​​​​Armando 
Value Headline: Be proactive.
Behavior: Working hard to be proactive, making sure everything gets completed on time.
Values Theme: Work effectively, be proactive, emphasize on organization to ensure success.
Value headline: Trust your teammates. 
Behavior: Team worker who is focused on never leaving anyone behind or anything undone.
Values ThemeCollaboration as a tool to improve work outcomes.
Value headline: Explore without boundaries. 
Behavior: Constantly learning and evolving through courses and work trial and error.
Values ThemeExploration is key in the process of innovation.

Juan
Value Headline: Push the limits.
Behavior: Push the limits and see no boundaries. Promotes endless exploration and is not afraid of failure.
Values ThemeUnderstands risk as a way to promote exploration and access innovation.
Value Headline: Lead by example. 
Behavior: Works hard to ensure the organization and diverse teams move forward. Empowers people through education and work freedom.
Values ThemeMoves the organization forward and leads by example.
Value Headline: Learn from Insights. 
Behavior: Work closely to ensure customers voices are heard. Constantly in contact with consumers to learn from their experience. 
Values ThemeCustomers voices are heard and used to improve products and experiences
Establishment Labs - Obituary
Purpose: To innovate on women's health to provide an improved experience for women worldwide.
Establishment Labs (NASDAQ: ESTA) was known as the first company in Costa Rica to go public on a U.S. Exchange. A company of innovators which was born as a startup and dream to a group of friends, ESTA will long be remember for its innovative products and its passionate professionals. 
ESTA lead many professionals through a path of experimentation, creation and development that changed the way breast implants were design and produced. They redefined the experience of purchasing, selling and relating to implants and created new possibilities for their customers. The breast implant industry was changed to focus on women's health and to empower women to take charge. ESTA brought to light the importance of women taking part in their own health and seeking professionals to help them in the process.
ESTA's legacy is seen worldwide in women empowerment in decision making. This company introduced women to a new way of managing their health in which they had control over every part of the process and enabled a change in the industry at large. ESTA marked a turning point in women's health reducing issues for women by simply encouraging them to take charge. 
After numerous scandals related to unsafe production of implants, ESTA set a clear path that helped to revolutionize the industry of implants by implementing high quality safety and innovation standards. Through D2C sales, constant product redesign and ample brand presence, ESTA will long be remembered as a leader in the industry.
Back to Top