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Your Stories

A HUGE thank you to everyone who took the time to send us your responses. We hope you find these resources helpful.

The Vox Agency

When The Vox Agency was created in April 2011, we all worked remotely from the beginning. Therefore, when the shutdown occurred, we were in a great position since we were already working from our home offices and could continue to seamlessly do so. As for our company culture, we are doing everything we can to stay connected through virtual meetings. (We even play Conference Call Bingo. The prize? Extra paid days off.) We are also offering pro bono work to struggling non-profits in need at this time which helps the team feel connected to the community.

Emplify

We are hosting weekly well-being virtual chats on things like zoom fatigue, physical safety tips, media literacy, etc., to help people maintain connection and stay centered throughout the pandemic. Family members are invited to the chats as well.

Dr. Schutz

At Dr. Schutz, a company based out of Germany and focused on "changing the world, one floor at a time", we share our stories and culture in several WhatsApp groups. One is called the "Schutz fun channel" where everyone can share private stories, jokes, send pictures of their latest BBQ or other delicious local dishes (members of the channel live and work on five different continents) and so on. Due to Corona we meet on the fun channel once every Friday for a virtual Happy Hour. On our regular international channel we share the latest projects from around the world, some of which are super impressive and show how we can improve and redesign buildings in a sustainable way. The best projects then make it onto our LinkedIn channel. As a group and a living and loving company family we share the same purpose and passion for what we do and we care for each other in these often lonesome times.

Fracture

Every morning as the Culture Manager, I post an icebreaker for our WFH team to answer. Everything with our team centers around food which we find gets the highest engagement on those day where food is the main focus. We have also created several other channels based on interest where we share articles and have small discussions. We are fortunate to have someone who is providing our team with virtual yoga 2x a week and this has been a great way to start the day. Other activities include team virtual lunches or company virtual lunches hosted at least 1x per week. We also have a weekly virtual town hall session as well as sprinkle in virtual coffee breaks and happy hours.

Fair

It's been an interesting transition with our company working from home. So much of our culture is through our day to day interactions with one another. And while we all miss seeing our work friends and being around the spirit of our office, we've figured out a way to keep that spirit alive virtually as best we can. We've been hosting all company happy hours every Thursday where we have a different entertainer or activity for our people to enjoy. We've had a Magician show us some awesome magic tricks, we've had a Mixologist teach us how to make some crafty cocktails with ingredients we have in the house, and we've even had a local Los Angeles Artist come on to lead us through drawing and shading an art piece. These activities have helped us all connect through doing something together and we also get to meet our people's families who join in and participate in these Happy Hours. Along with that, we have held an At Home Scavenger Hunt where teams try and find the clues and submit photos of their findings creatively. We've hosted a Wellness Week with daily activities such as live work out classes with a trainer, yoga sessions led by one of our employees who is certified, self-care bingo games, and even had health experts on Zoom discussing how to balance and manage daily stresses. We've continued holding our daily Mindfulness sessions every single morning as we normally did when we were in the office, to help keep some routine and normalcy. And one thing that's been incredibly helpful in keeping us all connected is our weekly all company meetings where our Leadership Team provides business updates and answers any questions our people may have. Lastly, we send out a weekly email that showcases what every team has been working on and the accomplishments they've made even during this challenging time. Of course nothing is better than in person human interaction but I feel really proud of my team and our people for finding ways to keep our culture alive. I'm truly grateful in what we've been able to accomplish during this time not only from a business perspective but from a people and culture perspective as well. It's a testament that shows our resiliency and our ability to adapt to any challenges that come our way. Sending all my best from one people person to another, Anna Moghaddam Senior Manager of People and Culture, Fair

Tribal Credit

How Tribal Powers through COVID-19 in 6 Steps

As a remote startup, with teams in the US, UAE, Egypt, Jordan and Greece, the work-from-home scene is already familiar to us here at Tribal. But if there’s ever a time we need to feel supported and connected to one another, it’s now. Here are some of the practices we have put into place since the pandemic began to help our team feel connected, energized, and empowered.

1- Safety comes first: Before making any business decisions, one of the first priorities at the onset of the pandemic was ensuring the safety of the team. Teammates around the world were armed with knowledge and resources, like a work-from-home announcement for our office-based teams, and circulation of the World Health Organization’s coronavirus advisory that listed measures to protect against the virus. Business travel was also quickly banned.

2- Transparency goes a long way: A pandemic can cause a great deal of panic and anxiety. Knowing where our company stands as we sail through rough waters was important for all of us. Tribal execs not only acted fast when the outbreak began, but they were quick to communicate changes, explain business decisions, and candidly share thoughts about the situation and its impact on our business.

3- Overcommunicate: In the midst of a health and safety threat and a global lockdown, there’s no such thing as overcommunication. As a remote team wanting to share more than just our screens, we leveraged a variety of communication channels to connect with each other on both a professional and personal level. Our strictly no-work WhatsApp group helped us stay in touch across time zones and swap tips and recommendations, like mindfulness practices, books and podcasts to help each other power through. Slack’s sister app, Donut Coffee, also provided a fun way for team members to connect one-on-one by virtually "catching up" over coffee, lunch, or donuts. "Ask the CEO"—a bi-weekly company-wide meeting for sharing company news and team updates— provided a platform for us to openly ask questions, share ideas, suggestions, frustrations or concerns, and brainstorm possible solutions. These meetings also began with fun energizers and ice-breaking activities. Finally, a virtual co-working space was set up for team members to keep each other company as we would in a regular office space.

4- Create your own spin on team activities: One of our learnings during this pandemic was the power of keeping the team spirits up. But what can you do for a team that’s based in different parts of the globe? Tribe Times—a team-only email newsletter—was created to get to know our tribe better, share what we’re doing during quarantine, and sometimes, even showcase hidden talents. From breaking news, a spotlight on one of our Tribers, fun global updates, sharing a roundup of best reads and weekend watch lists, Tribe Times has become our go-to digest to know that in spite of the global panic, there’s still some good news and great things happening in the world.

5- Lead with compassion and care During a crisis – let alone a pandemic, it’s fundamental to provide an environment where people felt safe and cared for, where both their personal and professional struggles are heard. For everyone to process and cope with COVID-19, we schedule regular manager-team check-ins, dedicate more time to listen to our team’s needs, practice group meditation, and share best practices and helpful handbooks on how to maintain our wellbeing and mental health in times of distress.

6- Customers are part of the Tribe: While many of the actions taken in response to COVID-19 centered around keeping the team safe and positive, looking out for our customers was equally important. As a startup whose mission is to serve other startups, we needed to know what we could do to help. We scheduled calls with our customers to understand their problems, identify common challenges, and learn about the services and financial tools that could help them the most.

Looking ahead ‍ The practices we put into place at Tribal helped us endure these unprecedented times as a connected and united team—and will hopefully continue to as we navigate whatever lies ahead. We hope you and your team can power through adversities that come your way, as well.

Read the Article on Tribal Credit's Website