Wondering what it’s really like to work at Illumio? This series, written by employees, drills down into Illumio’s core values. Hear from Nadia Dizaji, Recruiting Program Manager, about how leveraging differences makes Illumio and its employees stronger.
A homogenous workplace will drive innovation and make collaboration fun – said no one ever.
This morning I sat on a Zoom call with six other Illumineers and observed as one of my fellow team members did the hard work to go past their confirmation bias bubble. They felt certain that they had the right solution to the problem already—they had a wonderful PowerPoint depicting their plan. Still, they came to the meeting and asked thoughtful questions. Then, they listened to the opinions of people with expertise and experiences different than their own, different backgrounds, different career-levels, and in the end, the solution we came away with had evolved into something far more compelling.
At Illumio, we make the effort to learn and understand our team members’ strengths and then we lean on the people with those strengths. We search out voices and opinions on project teams that might oppose our own and we implement diverse hiring practices to ensure we continue to prioritize differences across departments.
As a leader in Zero Trust cybersecurity, it is critical that we always innovate. A significant part of successful innovation is the ability to resist a standard of multiple homogenous viewpoints. To do this well, we must hold firm to our value of ‘leveraging differences’ and building a culture where those differences can continue to thrive and find amplification.
As soon as I started at Illumio, I had the opportunity to work across multiple functions and I got to see how leveraging differences embedded itself in many of our interactions. It usually begins with curiosity, with a natural desire to learn more about each team member—not just as a co-worker but as an individual. Then, I noticed on a few cross-functional projects that someone would join a meeting who might not have an obvious reason for attending. I would learn later that a regular attender had invited them because they had a unique perspective or voice that wasn’t currently represented on the project. In due time, that person would ask a pointed question or offer a solution we hadn’t considered.
Illumio’s commitment to leveraging differences extends to tenure as well, with an openness that solutions can come from any individual. Illumineers who have only been in their roles for a week propose ideas that get implemented just as easily as long-time team members. At Illumio, there is an appreciation that someone who is new might see things that others have missed or failed to consider.
Our value of leveraging differences also shows up in our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts. We are leveraging differences by centering the right voices in our initiatives and engaging a large set of Illumineer stakeholders. This work will continue to lay the foundation, helping to build upon this important value and ensuring it remains core to our culture and our people.
If you're interested in a highly collaborative, engaging professional environment, I invite you to explore our current opportunities at Careers at Illumio.