Want to Strengthen Workplace Culture? Design a Ritual

Posted on by Brandon Klein

Picture this: you’re an engineer at Facebook’s headquarters in Menlo Park. You’re sitting in a lecture with a guest speaker, learning about the latest and greatest in nanotechnology. Next to you, one of your friends is capturing the speaker’s best quotes on his phone. He texts a quote to a graphic designer friend who’s sitting across campus in Facebook’s internal print shop. The designer immediately designs a poster based on the quote, then pins them up around campus. As you walk out of the lecture, you see the posters—echoing the lecture that ended just seconds ago—already plastered on walls.

Mind blown, right? But this is just another day at Facebook. The rapid poster-printing phenomenon is coordinated through Facebook’s Analog Research Lab, an internal workshop open to everyone on campus. Employees can create any posters they want, on any topic they care about, and put them up anywhere—guerilla style.

Sounds like fun. But it’s about much more than that. Facebook has always valued openness, creativity, and giving everyone the power to build things. Poster-making is a powerful expression of this. It’s a great example of a ritual—a meaningful recurring practice that connects employees to an organization’s core beliefs.