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MuleSoft was just rated the #1 Top Workplace for mid-sized companies in the Bay Area by the Bay Area News Group, our fifth consecutive year on this list—and we’re pretty excited about it! The reason this award means so much to us is that it’s based entirely on employee surveys, so the 350+ Muleys in our San Francisco HQ all had awesome things to say about why they love coming to work every day. We were also named in the top 10 Best Places to Work by the San Francisco Business Times and Silicon Valley Business Journal, and it’s our third time being recognized on the list.

So what truly makes a great workplace? To us, it’s not just fancy perks and happy hours (don’t get us wrong, we love our chocolate-covered pretzels from our wall of snacks just like anyone else!). To truly make a great workplace, we have a relentless focus on building culture coming from the top down, we hire the most exceptional people who are culture-adders and builders, and we create an environment that inspires everyone to do their best work.

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While everyone at MuleSoft “owns” our culture and makes it better every day, there are a few key people who spend a majority of their days making this office an awesome place to work for everyone, and every Muley to come (yes, we’re hiring!).

catherine kristen
Kristen Look (left) and Catherine Avendaño (right)

We sat down with two of those people, Kristen Look, Global Facilities Lead at MuleSoft, who manages our San Francisco office, and Catherine Avendaño, former Head of Employee Services and current Senior Manager of Learning & Organizational Development to dig into why MuleSoft is such a great place to work.

Why is culture at MuleSoft so important?

Kristen: The culture at MuleSoft is definitely a differentiator. It’s what makes people want to get up every morning and come to the office. I consider culture as the glue that really connects people to the company. At MuleSoft, this “glue” is reflected in our four core values. One of our four core values that resonates with me is ‘make it awesome.’ I love that we don’t settle for the minimum and we continue to tweak and improve as new ideas come up. Since we have such a transparent and open culture, it makes it easy to receive feedback on how to continually improve something you’re working on.

mulesoft core values

Catherine: At the end of the day, most of us spend the majority of our day at work and, in general, people want to be in an environment where they can work towards their personal and professional goals and be their best. At Mulesoft, we have done a really good job of making that a focal piece. We are all here to build a successful company, and that’s contingent on the environment that we work in. This environment is truly dependent on the kind of people we bring in and the culture that they build. Overall, people and their experiences are at the forefront at MuleSoft, and that is the reason why I am here. These four core values are an important reflection of our culture––they guide us to be better, help us inspire each other, and drive us to build an amazing company.

How does MuleSoft’s office environment reflect our culture?

Kristen: The way we build our office environment is a thoughtful reflection of our culture. For example, in the San Francisco office, no one works in a cubicle or in a private office; we have an open office culture where people can collaborate and communicate easily. We try to incorporate as much glass into the design,  both in our SF office and across the world. We want things at MuleSoft to be transparent, which is why all of the design and organization decisions that we make are in support of constantly increasing visibility and transparency across the company.

mulesoft offices

I also think our culture is not only reflected in the four core values we have, but in the office spaces we work in every day. In San Francisco, we have what we call “support spaces.” These spaces are meant to be collaborative areas. Let’s imagine that a team of three people is having a meeting in, say, Room 15. They reserve the room for 30 minutes, but their discussion continues for longer. In most cases, they’d have to stand in the hallway or reschedule another meeting. Not here! Our offices are designed to facilitate collaboration. In the example above, the team can simply go to the collaborative spaces, and continue their meeting from where they left off.

What makes MuleSoft a great place to work?

Catherine: To me, a great place is one where you can laugh every day––and that’s something I have at MuleSoft. I feel great coming to work each day because I know that I will be surrounded by experienced people that not only drive me, but are also smart, motivating, and inspiring. Still, even though we are all constantly surrounded by this fierce drive and intelligence, we don’t take ourselves too seriously. Yes, we are an enterprise software company, but we are also real people!

Kristen:. A great workplace is not marked by only its snacks or ping pong tables––it’s about the space you’re in and the people you’re interacting with. Are you interacting with the space in a way that makes you excited to do your job? Or are you staring at a wall all day with no daylight? Are you having fun with the people you’re working and collaborating with? Or are you in an environment where everyone is buttoned up and you feel you can’t get your voice heard? At MuleSoft I think we do a great job of ensuring the people are not only working with like-minded, driven colleagues, but are also doing it in a space that makes them enjoy working.

What do you most look forward to when coming to work each day?

mulesoft office

Catherine: I always look forward to being “stretched”––both analytically and creatively. In my role as Senior Manager of Learning & Organization Development, I have the opportunity to dig deep into problems and then I get the support I need to go solve that problem. For me, that’s a great opportunity! When I look back today, I am both amazed and proud of all of my accomplishments, and that’s thanks to the people that have supported me along the way and the opportunity that MuleSoft has given me.

Kristen: I agree with Catherine, working at MuleSoft means being constantly stretched and motivated. The opportunity here is insane. Anyone that is hardworking and motivated to fix a problem can simply go for it! And I think that’s something unique, because some companies tend to have a lot of red tape that prevents people from taking on the projects they want or making a true impact. To echo what I said earlier, snacks and ping pong tables aren’t everything. That’s not where the focus is at MuleSoft. It’s not just about the amenities (although those are important too!). It’s always about product, people, and culture. That’s MuleSoft.

Interested in working for MuleSoft? We are hiring! Check our Careers site for a list of open positions in San Francisco and beyond.