I went into my first day at IDEO hearing a lot about their open structure and culture, their sticky note obsession, and how they’re the nicest people to work with. All of this proved to be true. In fact, the open hierarchy was quite a culture shock for me at first. As someone who is used to having a constant stream of orders and commands, it was freeing to be able to do things of my own accord. Luckily everyone else was eager to help, and they were able to ease me into this type of work environment. As for the people of IDEO, it is one of the most diverse places I’ve gotten to be a part of. Every person there had a unique story, coming from across the globe, from Italy to Singapore, and each with their own life and professional experience — design, business, engineering and beyond. Overall, I am very grateful for what I’ve learned at IDEO. My co-workers and friends at the studio gave me a new way to look at design practice, process, research and helped me learn to view the world, and the people in it, in a more optimistic way.