Business as Abnormal: Every Message We’ve Shared With Our Team (So Far) During COVID-19

No one knows how to work during a pandemic, and we’re all grappling through it together. So in the spirit of sharing, here are all of the internal messages we’ve shared with our team and shareholders during this time.

Apr 13, 2020 3 min readOpen
Photo of Courtney Seiter
Courtney Seiter

Former Director of People @ Buffer

Ever since a global pandemic exploded the ranks of remote workers in a matter of a few weeks, folks have been turning to longtime remote companies like Buffer for answers.

We wish we had them. Buffer has been fully remote for almost 10 years, but this is not normal remote working.

We know remote, and are eager to help others, but are also adapting to the new reality ourselves. Many teammates are newly balancing work with partners, childcare, homeschooling, taking care of relatives, and more, all while being mostly confined to their homes and out of their normal routine. Not to mention the anxiety of the fast-changing news cycle.

No one knows how to work during a pandemic, and we’re all grappling through it together. So in the spirit of sharing, here are all of the internal messages we’ve shared with our team and shareholders during this time.

March 4: Retreat postponed

  • Shared: March 4, 2020
  • Posted by: Courtney Seiter, Director of People
  • Title: We are postponing our planned June retreat in Athens

Our first mention of the virus to the team was in making a decision about our planned team retreat in Greece. As an international team, we were already beginning to see the effects of COVID-19 in our APAC teammates’ lives. Nevertheless, making this decision so early for travel in June was a tough one with a lot of debate and discussion.

March 12: Team guidelines

  • Shared: March 12, 2020
  • Posted by: Courtney Seiter, Director of People
  • Title: Buffer Guidelines for 2019 Coronavirus (COVID-19)

This document was our first comprehensive communication to the team expressing specifically how our day-to-day life and work might change with the pandemic. It remains our document of record when it comes to COVID-19 policy, though more information has been added over time.

March 18: Economic report

  • Shared: March 12, 2020
  • Posted by: Caryn Hubbard, Director of Finance
  • Title: How we’re positioned to handle this new economic climate

The question on teammates’ minds following our initial guidelines was: How is Buffer financially positioned to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic? This report outlined that Buffer is in a strong financial position to weather the economic impact of an inevitable downturn.

March 26: CEO letter

  • Shared: March 26, 2020
  • Posted by: Joel Gascoigne, Founder and CEO
  • Title: An assortment of thoughts on our approach during COVID-19

A “North Star” letter to the team outlining our responsibility to our customers, Buffer’s ultimate purpose, and our philosophy of people over profit – both right now and in the long term.

March 30: Sick time

  • Shared: March 30, 2020
  • Posted by: Courtney Seiter, Director of People
  • Title: A note on COVID-19 sick time and time off

A more in-depth note on our sick leave and overall time off policy during the COVID-19 pandemic. We continue to encourage even more schedule flexibility than normal, and are actively encouraging teammates to take not only sick time but also vacation and personal time to manage the stress of the worldwide situation.

April 1: Shareholder update

  • Shared: April 1, 2020
  • Posted by: Joel Gascoigne, Founder and CEO
  • Title: Buffer Shareholder Update: COVID-19 Impact and Approach

Buffer’s communication to shareholders concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. This note details not only the actions we’ve taken so far as a team but also the people-first and customer-focused stance that’s guiding us. In many ways, this new reality has deepened and expanded the ideas we have around how we can help small businesses

April 3: Customer Assistance Program

  • Shared: April 3, 2020
  • Posted by: Joel Gascoigne, Founder and CEO
  • Title: Launching the COVID-19 Customer Assistance Program

An update on how Buffer is helping customers get through the COVID-19 pandemic. We announced the launch of the COVID-19 Customer Assistance Program to proactively help those in need, and the earmarking of $500k to help customers in a variety of ways.


We’ll keep this post updated with more communications as the situation continues to unfold. Meanwhile, everyone at Buffer is sending all our love and care to all of you!

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