Nathan Sykes

April 16, 2021

What is Gapingvoid up to?

Happy Friday! Short post today.

If you're not familiar, Gapingvoid is a culture design consulting group that has some very interesting ideas about how culture should be created inside of a growing company. They first popped up on my radar in the land of Joe Polish - his office is full of their paintings, all custom commissioned as part of a 'culture wall'. When I first saw them, I thought "cool", and "weird", and went on with my day.

A little while later, I learned that MIT Sloan had commissioned a culture wall from Gapingvoid too. My reaction to that was "Whoa, MIT Sloan!", and "do they mean MIT the Institute in Cambridge"? My interest was peaked even higher.

Then I saw that they had done a culture wall for MICROSOFT and I was like "alright fine, let me look into this company a bit more". What I found is that interesting, and I wanted to share.

First, whatever Gapingvoid does works. Microsoft is one of the largest companies in the world, so that one's an easy confirmation. Joe Polish's office has extraordinarily low staff turnover (every single person I met that worked for Genius Network had worked there for 5+ years, more often 10+ and 15+ years), so they were obviously doing something right by way of company culture. And the MIT Sloan School of Management curates a culture of intellectual curiosity that makes students feel like "[they're] studying with the next set of billionaires".

That's like an actual review!


What Gapingvoid claims to do is "deliver a real, human, emotional, immersive connection to work." through culture design. They're a consulting firm first and foremost, so they do a lot of the coaching storytellers, creating tools, designing team events, etc. - but they pair that with artistic talent to create designs for the physical spaces of the companies they're working for that reinforce the mantra and the culture.

I find it very fascinating, and I thought I'd give it a share.

If you want to learn more about what Gapingvoid is up to, here's an Inc. article written by Benjamin Hardy.