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Workplace of the future - Page 8

How Our Remote Marketing Team Collaborates Across 6 Timezones

In the past when our marketing team was only two or three people, it was easy to work on projects together. Finding time to meet and discuss was also easy, as we only had to coordinate between a few people and we were in fairly close timezones. In the past year, our marketing team has grown from a team of four to a team of eight (yay!). Timezones are mildly more of a challenge now that we are based all around the world — from the West Coast in the US to the East Coast in the US to Canada, to th

What Public Relations at a Startup is Really Like

Public relations can mean a variety of things, especially at a startup where many people wear any number of hats. My first job out of university was as an intern at a startup doing public relations (PR) for them. I cold-called reporters with pitches, wrote press releases and even did some ghost writing. I was the first PR person they had ever hired, and have since been the first person to be hired in a full-time public relations role at three other startups. I completely adore PR (and social m

We’re a company founded by immigrants: here’s why we don’t support the immigration ban

On Friday, President Trump banned entry into the United States for migrants from seven Muslim-majority countries and instated a 120-day halt to resettlement of refugees from around the world. As the founder of a global team , I believe this ban is fundamentally wrong and directly opposed to Buffer’s values of inclusion, diversity and openness. Buffer is a company founded

Leading Ideas: Buffer’s new Engineering Career Paths Framework

During early startup days, everyone pitches into everything and just does what needs doing. The focus is on building a product: getting it out the door and delivering something great for our users. A small, flat team, a cluster of passionate engineers doing whatever it takes each day, works just fine. More than fine – it’s brilliant. It’s what got Buffer to where we are today, passing $12M in ARR with a team of 81 Bufferoos spread across the world, serving over 4 million users who send more tha

A Manager’s Guide to Family Leave at Buffer

Thinking through our very first family leave policy at Buffer was a new and exciting thing for our young company. I personally was honored to be the first teammate to take a leave and put this “into practice ” and most recently, I got the chance to help with crafting our more inclusive leave policy. And yet, for all our pla

Our Most Inclusive Family Leave Policy Yet, And Why We Think It’s Part of the Workplace of the Future

What does a family leave policy look like for the workplace of the future? What if your workplace is remote? And global? What about leave types that aren’t related to having children: like bereavement leave, taking care of parents or aging loved ones… How do these fit into the workplace of the future? These were some of the questions we considered as we dove deeper into our old (and fairly standard for most tech companies) family leave policy of 16 weeks paid time off. Part of our company vi

What It’s Like to Take a Sabbatical At a Fast-Moving Tech Startup

Tech startups are known for their fast pace; big changes can happen in days or even hours. How much would change if you walked away from one for a month–or even longer? Would you be left behind? Would you be able to catch up? Would you even have a job at the end of it? In 2016, I had the opportunity to find out the answers to these questions for myself when I took a six-week sabbatical to study and complete my undergraduate degree. I’d love to share everything about this experience — how I pl

How We Structure Our Days as a Remote Team for Optimal Collaboration, Productivity and Creativity

How do you work best throughout the day? For some of us on the Buffer team, it’s about the right morning routine to set the day right. For others, the right evening routine is what it takes to get ahead for the next day. We’ve found there’s no one way to organize your work day — and that the best fit looks different for every person. Here are a few examples from our team to help inspire some different ideas to arrange your workday for optimal productivity and creativity. Structure doesn’t h

Building The Buffer Links Service

On the surface the Buffer link counting service is pretty simple. Its job is to keep track of the number of times someone has created a Buffer post with a given url embedded into it. An Example Link { "url": "", "created_at": "1480431305", "update_id": "123456", "profile_id": "654321" } Behind the scenes this is what powers the Buffer Button counts. As we’ve recently shared, Buffer is moving towards a Service Oriented Architecture [https:/

On Empathy: A Letter We Shared with Our Happiness Heroes

(Our Chief Happiness Officer, Carolyn, shared this note with our Happiness team after some deep auditing and reflection on our communications with our customers. If Carolyn’s note inspires or resonates with you, we’d love to hear from you in the comments!) Hey Heroes. :) I need to start this note with an apology. Instead of creating an environment where you’ve felt entirely free to speak and write and care for customers in your own unique and special way, I fear that we’ve created some misconc

Celebrating Around the World: How Holidays Work on Our Distributed, International Team

Some people might be surprised to hear that we didn’t used to get time off for Christmas at Buffer—or for Hanukkah, Canadian Thanksgiving, Chinese New Year or any specific holiday at all! Instead, we had unlimited time off and the full trust of our teammates to make great decisions about how to use this privilege. Great in theory, but as it turns out, challenging in practice. Over time, we learned that unlimited vacation policies statistically

Nomading and Working Across America in the “Rover and Hab” (Part Two)

Editor’s note: This is a multi-part series chronicling the journey of Buffer’s data analyst, Matt, as he and his wife and two dogs journey across America in an RV while remote working. Check out part one here! Hello from the road! I shared a bit in Part One about how a random “what if” question over a bottle of wine on the porch of our home in Boulder, Colorado spawned a total uprooting of our suburban life. Now myself, my wife, Jenna, and our two dogs are out on the road, traveling the Unite

3 Breakthroughs and 2 Failures that Have Shaped Buffer

In Buffer’s past six years, we’ve experimented with product and culture and had some successes and some flops. And yet there have been some breakthroughs that evolved naturally, some intentionally. On the flip side, we’ve had some failures that have been outside our control and also fully within our control. Each up and down has shaped us as a company, as a product and me as an individual. Here are a few of those breakthroughs and failures. Breakthrough #1 – Living and working transparency

Remote Work Must-Haves: Our Team’s Gear, Gadget and Bag Recommendations

The remote work movement is a growing global phenomenon. 79 percent of knowledge workers worldwide said they work from home, and 80-90% of the U.S. workforce would like to work remotely at least part time. And while no two remote work situations are identical, there are some common themes when it comes to the tools and accessories for success. Of course, the most crucial element is wifi. But after that, there’s still plenty to consider: the desk setup, the commuter bag, the headphones, the tr

Creating a ‘Toeless’ Company: How We’re Working to Keep Customers at the Heart of All We Do

A business is nothing without its customers. And yet as businesses grow and team members become more specialized, it’s easy to get further and further from the customer. Buffer is no exception – in the course of our journey, there have been multiple times when we’ve felt a much larger distance than we’d like between us and our customers. What’s interesting is that every time that distance starts to make itself felt, something amazing happens to close the gap. Sometimes it’s a deliberate chang

How We’re Striving to Make Buffer More Accessible and Why it Matters

Have you ever had a moment that completely changed how you thought about the world around you? I grew up on the internet. It’s a big part of my life pretty much every day. I’ve learned how to program, changed careers, built community, and even met my boyfriend. Being online helps me travel the world with confidence, stay in touch with family, expand my empathy, and learn more about social justice issues. I have a hard time imagining where I would be if I didn’t have access to the online commun

Team Building Across Six Time Zones: The Tools and Experiments of Buffer

Hi there! This is an older post that we’ve kept around for transparency but that means that sometimes the information is no longer accurate. When I joined the Buffer team, I was employee number 23 or 24, and back then it wasn’t too hard to keep connected to everyone on the team. On top of our go-to communication tools for video conferencing (the now-defunct Sqwiggle) and group instant messaging (HipChat), we had a few systems in place to get to know each other better – including masterminds [

Do the Right Thing: Why We’re Becoming More Mindful in Sharing Swag

We call members of our customer support team “Happiness Heroes,” and positivity is one of our core values. Smiley faces are a key element of our communication. And like many tech companies, we have lots of swag items, like T-shirts, water bottles, stickers, socks and more. So it’s long been our policy to give out lots of swag . We send goodies to anyone, (pretty much) anywhere! Free stuff makes people happy, right? We ask for a mailing address anyti

How One Tweet Changed My Perception of Two Little Words

A lesson I’ve learned over the past four years building and growing the team at Buffer is how important awareness is to self-improvement . I’m starting to think awareness is the tough part. Most of the battle for learning, growing and improving is being aware of what to improve. When I joined Buffer, I was surrounded by a team that values self-improvement and

Building Deliberate Praise Into Remote Culture: 6 Methods We Use at Buffer

Have you ever received a compliment that brightened your day? Your week? As Mother Theresa said, “Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” Creating a culture of praise, positivity and recognition has been a pivotal cornerstone of our Buffer culture. Here’s a bit more about why praise is so important, how we deliver praise and recognition across our remote team of 80 employees, and a few lessons we’ve learned.

Buffer Hack Days: Our Intense Experiment for a Creative Jolt

Do you remember the last time you focused solely on one project — a big personal or work-related task — until it was finished? Recently, our data team tried this with a stretch of two full work days they called “hack days.” Four projects came about as a result, as well as a host of other benefits for the data team (and entire company!) Read on to learn more about the experiment, the process and how you could try an event like this for your business or team. In need of focus time, an idea A ha

3 Tips on Running Remote Coaching Sessions

Buffer is a remote company; we are a team of 80 people operating in 11 different time zones, and we don’t own any offices! At Buffer, everyone gets to work from the place they feel the most comfortable in. This lifestyle opens up a lot of possibilities: Some team members decide to pack up and go traveling, while others embrace family life to the fullest from their home office. This freedom also requires us to be more disciplined when it comes to working together — part

How “What if We” Turned into Traveling and Working from an RV Across America

Editor’s note: Join the journey of Buffer’s data analyst, Matt, as he and his wife and two dogs travel across America in an RV while working remotely! This is the first post in an ongoing series. And they’re kicking off their voyage today, October 7th! Go, Matt and Jenna! On a Friday evening in late October, 2015, my wife, Jenna, and I were back-porch philosophizing over a bottle of Tuscany red blend wine at our home in Boulder, Colorado. We can’t remember whose idea it was to begin with, but

A Year At Buffer: Top 10 Things I Learned While Working at a Startup

On September 14th, I celebrated my first Buffversary — a year at Buffer , a social media management startup. I thought it would be a good opportunity to take some time to reflect on the past year and share some of the things I learnt. A bit of background: I’m a Community Champion and I have been working on our community initiatives such as our weekly #bufferchat and our Slack community. Recently, after the Marketing and Community team combined forces [