Strengthening Culture and Community Impact One Meetup at a Time

By Carlo DiCelico, Senior Software Engineer and Team Lead

“Knowledge-sharing is our default”

Carlo DiCelico community impact

Carlo DiCelico addresses a Meetup at CashStar in Portland, Maine.

If you spend any time at CashStar, you will realize something right away: this is a company where everyone has an impact. There is a focused, purposeful energy emanating from the people who work here—a sense that they are passionate about what they do, the clients and customers they do it for and supporting each other in their efforts. The astonishing thing is that the culture responsible for this grew organically, with minimal intervention. The CashStar team owns its culture and gets it right.

Culture contributes to a sense of community. People often form communities to do more of the things they love, and folks here love learning and sharing new information with each other. Individuals and teams at CashStar are constantly iterating on themselves, their products and their processes, assessing and understanding what works and what doesn’t, and turning that insight into action. This is true of every department at CashStar, but the engineering team is a particularly good case in point.

As CashStar engineers, we are always honing our craft, staying up-to-date with the latest trends in our industry and helping each other get better at what we do. We have great resources at our disposal, such as a shared digital library, an internal wiki and Lunch ‘n’ Learns. Our engineers attend technology conferences to stay up on the latest as part of this culture of learning. In most ways, this aspect of our culture isn’t explicit or formalized—knowledge-sharing is just our default. This ethos extends outside of CashStar’s walls as well, in the form of contributing to local events like Maine Startup and Create Week and Agile Maine and by hosting Meetups.

CashStar sponsors two Meetups: Maine Server Side Engineering and Performance (MSSEP) and Nodeschool Portland. At last month’s MSSEP Meetup, a local developer gave a talk about how he used Apache Solr to build a search engine for PDF documents that is being used by universities across the country to make their catalogs searchable. The following day, we attended the Nodeschool Meetup, where members learned about the basics of functional programming in modern Javascript.

It’s easy to see the pizza and the smiles and miss the subtle but very important developments that are laying just beneath the surface. Activities like these strengthen our culture, connecting us to each other and the local community by providing a forum for the free exchange of ideas between CashStar and our Portland neighbors. Ultimately, this helps us become better engineers and gives us the opportunity to have an impact outside of work by sharing our expertise and experience.

Upcoming Meetups here in Portland will cover time series databases and intermediate functional programming with modern JS, among a range of other topics. I hope you can stop by sometime and join the conversation! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below!

To learn more about engineering positions and other career opportunities at CashStar, visit our Careers page.

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