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HubSpot's Katie Burke Cracks the Company Culture Code

Sarah Steimer

When HubSpot’s co-founder proposed Katie Burke become head of company culture, it sounded to her like a shortcut to unemployment. Instead, Burke continues to hold down both her job and what she calls “radical transparency” at the tech firm

Company culture is a buzzword. It can evoke images of free coffee and ping-pong tables. HubSpot’s vice president of culture and experience, Katie Burke, contends that a strong company culture is less about perks and more about transparency and diversity. Her organization has received ample recognition for its company culture efforts, but she continues to ask herself: “How else can HubSpot step up?” 

Q: Being in charge of company culture is a huge marketing role. How long have you worked at HubSpot and how did you get into this role exactly?

A: I’ve been at HubSpot for a little over four years. When I first started at the organization, Hannah [Fleishman, HubSpot’s recruitment marketing manager] and I were running internal and external communications. We did that through our IPO. That was the biggest day in the company’s history. We spent a lot of time with the executive team setting the tone for employees that the IPO was not the finish line, but the starting line. For us, the best days of HubSpot were to come.

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Sarah Steimer is a staff writer for the AMA's magazines and e-newsletters. She may be reached at ssteimer@ama.org or on Twitter at @sarah_steimer.