What it takes to be a CUKE
  October 18, 2019

The team at Cucumber are a special bunch.

Looking back on the first quarter since we were acquired by SmartBear, we took a day out together to reflect on that special-ness. We wanted to try and distill our culture so that we can be deliberate in protecting, celebrating, and spreading it as we integrate into the wider organisation.

It was a wonderful, emotional day.

Led by the inimitable Liana Chang, we considered our feelings about the past, present and future of Cucumber. We captured the "norms" or expected behaviours that we've evolved in how we work together that make us who we are.

These norms fell into four major groups which, delightfully enough, spell CUKE:


We are constantly experimenting, learning, and adapting what we do. We take time to listen, and always want to understand why. We call out our assumptions and biases.


We value diversity as a powerful asset. Instead of avoiding disagreement, we cherish, respect, and harness different opinions and perspectives to generate insight.


We create a safe, inclusive, blame-free atmosphere by assuming best intentions of each other. We treat each other with empathy and compassion. We believe profits come from putting people first.


We have high standards. We are honest with each other, and seek honest feedback. We are proud to have ethics and have the courage to act on them. We say no when necessary.

I'm proud of this team, and proud of the impact that experience of working in this crazy little company has had on everyone.

I look forward to seeing what happens as we start to share these cultural norms more widely with our new colleagues.

The Cucumber team, September 2019. Back row left-right: Aslak Helles√ły, Julien Biezemans, Dr. Sal Freudenberg, Romain Gerard, Seb Rose, Steve 'Tooky' Tooke, Theo England. Front row left-right: Marju Hirsh, Dr. Tracey S. Rosenberg, Matt Wynne, Jo Laing, Lucy Yu, Ryan Lloyd.