At Metromile, Jeff Rutledge is able to combine two of his professional interests: financial technology (aka fintech) and employee engagement. Outside of work, Jeff is active with his family, pets, and pizza making. We talked to Jeff about nurturing employees, encouraging innovation, and the Metromile values that inspire him the most.
What brought you to Metromile?
I’ve had a long-time, kind of geeky interest in fintech. When I was ready to leave my previous role, I decided to try to get my foot in the fintech door. One day I was on LinkedIn and I saw that a former colleague of mine worked at Metromile. So I reached out and we just started talking. We had an ongoing conversation for a number of months that ended with me coming aboard.
What does your role entail?
There are only three of us on the communications team right now, which means we’re often working collaboratively and not sticking to a super tightly defined niche. But I do spend a lot of time on internal communications and how we can continue to engage and inspire Metromilers, and counsel our leaders on how they can do the same. That means asking questions like: How does the way we interact with and speak to employees affect things like retention and productivity? How can we celebrate every employee’s contribution? How can we help ensure everyone’s aligned on the same goals?
What do you like most about working at Metromile?
One of the best things about working at Metromile is that if there’s something I’m interested in, I can go after it. For me, this recently led to a cross-functional project with our Data Science team in which we were able to quantify how traffic has changed post-COVID using data that nobody else has. Because we’re a growing company, there’s a lot of ground that hasn’t yet been claimed. I’m encouraged to step out of my comfort zone and embrace my creativity in the workplace. I think that’s one of the biggest reasons people love working here—there’s always room to experiment and try new things.
One of the Metromile values I’m attracted to is “be outcome oriented,” meaning we prioritize the outcome of someone’s efforts rather than the hours logged to get there. Ingraining this idea into our core values has helped us promote work-life balance, and of course, that’s meant a lot in a remote setting, too. It’s not uncommon to look for a meeting time with someone and see calendar holds for a school pick up or bedtime or things like that. I don’t feel pressure to prioritize work over home life or neglect family commitments. I think that’s pretty telling of the overall culture here, in the best way possible.
I have a daughter, and I love working somewhere where I’m not constantly making the hard choice between being an employee and being a dad. (I think other Metromilers would agree—we have a Slack channel called #metro-parent where we share tips, advice, and funny things our kids say. I think the dog and cat parents feel the same way, too!)
What advice would you give to job seekers interested in Metromile?
If you want your work to have an impact, this is a great place to be. Many of our engineers have told me that they chose Metromile over other options because they wanted a chance to see their work in the market and have a broad scope of impact.
So the work is important and engaging, but at the same time, there’s an understanding that you’re a human being with other interests. The number of nights I spend working late is pretty few because I can measure my impact and value based on the quality of outcomes, not the quantity of inputs. I’ve found that regardless of the team you’re on, you can contribute to company-wide success and still have a personal life.
What do you do for fun?
I mentioned my daughter—she’s seven years old, and a ton of fun to hang with. I’m really into movies, particularly science fiction. And I bake bread and make pizza. Pizza is my love language.