Although most of the CMg team is in the LA area, we do have some awesome players farther afield. One of them lives in Ann Arbor, also home to innovative software development firm Menlo Innovations, and over the years, she has toured their offices several times, learning up-close about their magic. Menlo takes a delightful, surprising—yet highly successful—approach to projects: each team of two works on one computer, and teams rotate every five business days. They have a flat hierarchy, and no one has an office—everyone works in a wide-open space, and new hires are chosen by the whole team, after an intense trial period. No new project gets off the ground until a team of Menlo’s High-Tech Anthropologists has embedded at the client site, so Menlo has a deep understanding of the client environment, all the better to understand how to create the best software solution. Work weeks are 40 hours, and no one is on email outside of business hours. (You read that right.) Rich Sheridan, CEO and architect of the Menlo model, captured the story of building a different kind of corporate culture and innovative software development methods in his book, Joy, Inc. Although not all of Menlo’s practices will transfer well to every organization, there is a lot to learn from Sheridan’s commitment to creating a workplace filled with joy, while providing top-notch client services. Be sure to check the trailer for Joy, which includes a mini-tour of Menlo’s workspace.