This week on Outside The Valley we have Tammy Bjelland, CEO and Founder of Workplaceless, a company that helps remote professionals, managers, and organizations to thrive in a remote setting. Tammy shares about how she got into advocating for remote work, what fascinates her the most about remote work, and why she thinks remote work can improve the education sector. We also talked about the specifics of how Workplaceless helps companies transform into remote-friendly organizations, and whether it’s possible to “hire for potential” in a remote organization. We’re taking an end-of-year hiatus after this episode and will be back next year with more cool discussions with other remote leaders! Until then, see you and have a great holiday season!
This week on the show, we have Liam Martin, co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Time Doctor and Staff.com. He is also the co-organizer of the Running Remote conference, the biggest conference on distributed teams and remote work. Liam shares his insights on growing into an “executive” role by “letting the entrepreneur inside you die,” how to help other people work with you, and the literal million-dollar mistakes that Liam and his co-founder Rob made when running their company. We also talk about why he started the Running Remote conference, the unspoken truths about running a large scale event, and what’s in store for next year’s conference in Austin, Texas. If you want to learn from the best of remote leaders, you can buy early bird tickets for next year’s Running Remote Conference here: https://ti.to/running-remote/2020
This week we are joined by Eddie Zaneski, Manager of Developer Relations at DigitalOcean! This episode is quite special, because we’re focusing on one single job position, which is, you guessed it: Developer Relations. We talk about how Developer Relations is a position that most of the time only makes sense when it’s a remote position, and how the rise of remote work affects this particular position. We also talk about The Remote Developer Experience report released by DigitalOcean this year, and the life of remote workers at DigitalOcean.
Today on Outside The Valley we have Megan Chinburg, VP of Engineering at Help Scout! We talked about Help Scout’s hiring and onboarding process from start to finish, with a discussion around the “value screening” stage, and how Help Scout makes sure to reduce biases in the interview process. Megan also shared the one thing that Help Scout did in the early days that made them grow solidly, and her top two pieces of advice for engineering managers everywhere.
Today on Outside The Valley we have Hailley Griffis, Head of Public Relations at Buffer. We discuss the culture of transparency and openness within Buffer, including how it affects the company’s marketing and hiring, how remote work affects Hailley’s productivity, and more. We also dive into Buffer’s internal processes, and talk about the most unique parts of them. This includes “internal applications” for new job openings, asynchronous all-hands meetings, why Buffer started offering paid sabbaticals, and more. Finally, we also talk about Buffer’s annual State of Remote Work Survey! Check out the survey here and please take a few minutes to fill it in!
Today on the show, we have the CEO and Founder of Credo, John Doherty. Credo is a platform where you can hire reliable, vetted marketing professionals. This week’s episode is less about remote work itself, but more about managing and communicating expectations — whether you're a leader of a company, a client, or a freelance consultant. We also talk about managing communities affiliated with a marketplace-style business, and John’s thoughts on building a bootstrapped, profitable company outside of Silicon Valley. John is also one of the happy users of Codementor, an Arc product, and it really was a pleasure to have him on the podcast. Enjoy the episode!
Today I’m joined by Giacomo “Peldi” Guilizzoni, the CEO of Balsamiq. In this episode, we talked about Balsamiq’s culture (specifically around the core value of continuous learning and the importance of experiments), the growing pains Peldi experienced as a leader, and more. We also had a quick peek into Balsamiq’s hiring and onboarding process. We also talked about why Peldi strongly prefers to employ remote team members, rather than have them as contractors (which is a common practice amongst remote/distributed companies). I really admire the self-aware nature of Balsamiq, which is a byproduct of Peldi’s personality as a founder and a leader. Hope you enjoy it too!
Today on the show we have Hiten Shah, founder and CEO of FYI. Hiten was also the founder of tech startups like Kissmetrics, Crazy Egg, and Quick Sprout. We talked about how Hiten has been leading remote teams since 2003, FYI’s Remote Work report, the importance of figuring out your remote work structure, and why hiring is about “opting-in.” An interesting theme in this interview is Hiten’s core message: “Figure out what works for you.” You can easily find articles about remote work best practices, remote work management, and so on. However, Hiten strongly recommends that you figure it out yourself. If your personality, management style, and team structure are not ideal for remote work, admit it and find a solution that works for you.
Today I’m joined by Ho Yin Cheung, the founder, and CEO of Remo, a tool that helps you organize virtual events and office space, and Riotly Social Media, an Instagram social media agency. We discussed the challenges Ho Yin faced when he began transitioning to be a better remote startup leader, how his perceptions about remote hiring have changed from enabling cost-cutting to enlarging the talent pool, and how Remo help provides the right amount of transparency for remote teams. Ho Yin also shared the resources and thought leaders that helped him to be a better remote startup leader. Make sure to check these out in the Learning Resources section below! Since we recorded this episode, Remo organized several virtual webinar events, and has even more events coming up.
Today on the show we have Andreas Klinger, the Head of Remote at AngelList, and one of the founding team members of Product Hunt. We talk about why hiring Silicon Valley engineers is now mostly a liability, how to systemize trust within remote teams, why onboarding is super crucial for remote teams, and so on. In this interview, we also mentioned two great resources: Andreas’ blog post “Managing Remote Teams - a Crash Course”, and his talk at the Running Remote conference. If you’re not familiar with these, be sure to check them out!
Today on the show, we have Justin Mitchell. Justin is the founder and CEO of YAC Chat, a voice collaboration tool for remote teams. He’s also a founder of SoFriendly, a software development company based in Florida. We're going to dive into how Justin got his first startup gig in high school, how YAC Chat got their traction via Product Hunt Maker's Festival, the importance of high-resolution communication in remote teams, and the role of voice in the future of remote work and everyday life . It was a fun chat with Justin. Hope you'll enjoy it too!
Today on the show we have Krister Haav, the CEO of Toggl, a simple (yet powerful) time tracker that helps you learn how much your time is worth. If you’re familiar with Toggl, you’ve probably already noticed that they have a super playful brand. They’re not afraid to experiment with comics, or even this addictive startup simulator game: https://toggl.com/startup-simulator/ In this episode, we discussed how Toggl evolved from a software consulting company to a product company, the importance of brand authenticity for remote companies, and why playfulness is an important element of Toggl’s culture. I had a very fun chat with Krister, and there’s a blooper at the end. So you can skip directly to the end, OR listen to the whole episode, maybe learn a thing or two, and then get to the blooper. Up to you!
Today I’m joined by Mark Faggiano, the founder and CEO of TaxJar, a 100% distributed SaaS company that helps businesses automate their sales tax calculations and filing. We talked about Mark’s genuine passion for remote work, why he personally handled new team members’ onboarding in the company, and how having an Employee Experience Team is vital for TaxJar.
Today we have Claire Lew on the show! Claire is the founder and CEO of Know Your Team, software that helps you become a better leader for your company. We talked about building trust and social connections in a remote team, how you can be a better facilitator as a leader, and the role of empathy in a distributed team.