Harnessing the Power of People Skills, One Interview at a Time

This is the story of how our first non-technical employee helped Atomic Object, slowly but surely, build a culture that insists on good people skills for everyone.

When Mary O’Neill joined Atomic Object in the early 2000s, she was our sole woman and only non-technical employee (managing accounting and other operational business activity). Read more on Harnessing the Power of People Skills, One Interview at a Time…

Three Ways I’ve Adopted the “Teach and Learn” Lifestyle

Here at Atomic Object, we have a passion to continue learning and sharing knowledge with fellow Atoms. Whether this means researching a new technology, attending a conference, or holding a brown bag discussion during lunch, we’re constantly seeking to explore new ideas and topics. This desire and drive to learn is described by one of Atomic’s six values: Teach and Learn. Read more on Three Ways I’ve Adopted the “Teach and Learn” Lifestyle…

Making Unexpected Friends at Work by Prepping for External Events

When I joined Atomic many years ago, it was a small group of tight-knit developers. With fewer than 10 developers working in an open office environment, it was easy to build and maintain a sense of camaraderie. Now that the number of Atoms is around 60, it’s not so easy to get to know one another. We’ve done many experiments to help build and foster the family feeling here at AO, but we’re always looking to improve. Read more on Making Unexpected Friends at Work by Prepping for External Events…

One Month at Atomic Object: Musings of a Corporate Defector

My on-boarding process at Atomic Object was almost a year in the making. While I was on assignment for GE Aviation to their joint venture company in Shanghai, China, I learned that my contract was not to be renewed for another year. It was part of a cost cutting measure to trim out a large number of corporate expats. This was not totally unexpected as our costs were extremely high.

Read more on One Month at Atomic Object: Musings of a Corporate Defector…

More Than a Policy – What Dealing with Workplace Harassment Looks Like

Atomic does a great job of cultivating a healthy work environment within our own building. We’ve got strong core values, great people, and high expectations for kindness, respect, and community. We don’t often need to exercise our policies around harassment, workplace sexism, or other forms of mistreatment.

However, despite our best efforts to find collaborators who fit our culture well, we don’t always have full knowledge or control over the people we’ll be working with.

So, what do we do when something does go wrong?
Read more on More Than a Policy – What Dealing with Workplace Harassment Looks Like…

Parallels Between Design and Leadership

When Carl messaged me a couple months ago, I knew something was up. He said he wanted to get together and chat about some important, but good things. I thought he might want to have a face-to-face conversation about me transitioning to a Delivery Lead role. I wasn’t sure what Carl would want to talk about, but becoming a managing partner in Ann Arbor wasn’t what I expected.
Read more on Parallels Between Design and Leadership…

Don’t Let Bad Feelings Fester – Bring Your FUDA into the Light

Atomic Object employs a group of smart, high-performing, passionate, diverse, and flawed human beings. It’s inevitable that each of us will occasionally experience “bad feelings” at work. As a company, we’ve put a lot thought into how to handle the bad feelings that occasionally arise during our time at work. One of the steps we’ve taken is extending the acronym FUD to “FUDA” as a shorthand for bad feelings and a prescription for how to handle them. Read more on Don’t Let Bad Feelings Fester – Bring Your FUDA into the Light…

Mary O’Neill on Treating Employees Like Customers, Saying ‘No’ to the CEO, and Doing the Work that Needs to Be Done

Meet Mary O’Neill, workplace designer, artisanal bread baker, and Business Manager at Atomic Object. I recently sat down with Mary to hear her story. Read more on Mary O’Neill on Treating Employees Like Customers, Saying ‘No’ to the CEO, and Doing the Work that Needs to Be Done…