A Values-Based Culture: Principles at Pearl

Values-Based Company Culture | Pearl Health


Culture at Pearl Health: the Lifeblood of Our Company

Culture eats strategy for breakfast | Peter Drucker | Pearl HealthAt Pearl, we believe the culture of our organization is the defining and ultimate reason for our success or failure. Culture is also a living and breathing organism: it is the experience of each and all of our people over time. We have created and will continue to iterate on our values, because we believe culture is sculpted through both the assertion of values by an organization and the consistent application of those values to decision making. 

Those values are best tested through hard decisions around talent, strategy, and problem resolution. Values are platitudes when they don’t help resolve conflicts or decisions; or when a team does not feel a deep connection to their validation. They’re defining and empowering when they help resolve hard decisions.

Culture as an evolving organism | Michael Kopko | Pearl Health

Values: the First — and Most Important — Hiring Criterion at Pearl

We hire first for values, which are the most important. We also assess abilities and the potential for someone to develop new skills. Certain roles require specific skills which are prerequisites, but hiring only for skills reduces one’s ability to grow and evolve with our company. The hardest thing for any business is to establish a clear set of values and actually apply them in decision-making processes. This is where companies are made or broken. Inconsistent application — or an unwillingness to review decisions through the paradigm of one’s stated values — can lead to failure and mistrust.

Values > Abilities > Skills | Hiring at Pearl Health

Decision-Making Ethics: How Decisions Are Made > Specific Outcomes 

Few businesses are defined by a continuous sequence of successful strategic decisions. Instead, they are defined by the values, people, decision-making frameworks and, most importantly, the way by which all of these come together in how big and small decisions are made each day. We care about how decisions are made even more than the specific outcome of a given decision. To do this well, you need to focus on how people interact with each other and how information is shared and evaluated. Good companies get decisions right, great companies define and continuously evolve a way by which they make good decisions. 

At Pearl, we think this boils down to some simple fundamentals: a positive outlook, a strong moral compass, systematic thinking, and open-mindedness to a variety of views. We seek to embody and practice the behaviors of the values implied by positive psychology, creative thinking, and entrepreneurial problem-solving — all grounded in unflinching integrity. 

Guiding Principles: the Foundation of Our Behavior

We start with a belief in our potential and an optimism or attitude around the possibility of what a committed group of people can accomplish. We buttress this through openness and inclusion, of both disparate points of view and the data available to us. And then we zoom out before we zoom in, applying both analytical and creative thinking to problem and opportunity spaces. 

The belief that anything is possible becomes practice when certain disciplines are brought to bear. For us, the most important of these disciplines are: 

  1. Do good. Be good and aspire to moral goodness, individually and as an organization.
  2. Be open. Include various points of view open-mindedly and equanimously. Relevant points of view and “good” and “bad” news are information, inputs into the evaluative framework.
  3. Solve scalably. Have a systems-based approach to our thinking–meaning we should aspire to build systems, processes, workflows, or machines, rather than a focus on solving the problem in front of us. 

The Power of Principles: Empowering Our People

These simple disciplines, if applied to a values system underpinned by integrity, can navigate us through any difficult situations. But more importantly, they should empower and enable our people to lead and build our business without unnecessary bureaucracy or constraint. They should allow our team to operate at their potential as entrepreneurs, experts, academics, designers, engineers, clinicians, and business developers.

Getting culture right isn’t easy. We seek patience and feedback from our organization and our stakeholders so we can navigate toward our cultural north star, discovering and refining that truth over time. 

Join Us & Help Us Define Pearl’s Future

If you’re interested to learn more about our culture, share feedback on what you’ve experienced elsewhere, or are interested in joining the Pearl team, we’d love to hear from you. Reach out to one of us!

Michael Kopko | Gabe Drapos | Jen Rabiner | Steven Duque | Pearl Health Management Team

Michael Kopko, CEO & co-Founder

Gabriel Drapos, Chief of Staff

Jennifer Rabiner, Chief Product Officer

Steven Duque, Chief Growth Officer


Pearl Health Careers | Health Care Startup Jobs

Michael Kopko | Gabe Drapos | Jen Rabiner | Steven Duque | Pearl Health Management Team

Michael Kopko, Gabe Drapos, Jen Rabiner & Steven Duque

CEO & co-Founder, Chief of Staff, Chief Product Officer & Chief Growth Officer