Working Remote and Sharing a Meal: practicing company values beyond the office

If you’ve looked into our interview process, you’ll see that we always ask the question “why is remote important to you?” An essential question for building a team with shared values, which is part of our recipe for success. Every member of our community has expressed their own compelling reason: more time with family, freedom to travel, independence to create. And every year we take time to celebrate those reasons!

Working remote is full of perks but of course, there are challenges as well. The obvious challenges are easy to address: provide opportunities for social engagement, leadership development, 1:1 mentoring, communicate, communicate, communicate, swag… the same types of initiatives provided in an office setting, but modified to be perpetuate success amongst a distributed team.

But what about incidental acts of kindness? Gestures that stem from the company’s culture, demonstrations of shared values. The unscheduled moments that arise organically in an office setting can, with enough thought, transfer into the remote work environment.
Demonstrating the Organization’s Values
This is the foundation. Every organization considers different factors during the hiring process; there are different skills needed to fill different roles; and most, if not all organizations, will pursue candidates that share the organization's values. But meshing well is only the first step, because without practice, the values will fade. In our community, one of our most unifying values is that of freedom, and while we all exercise that freedom through working location independent, we are also reminded to celebrate it.

Take this for example
What started as an organic way to say thank you to the team, grew into a yearly tradition that we can hardly wait for the next one to come around. Every year feels like a surprise, waking up to this message from the boss.
How does any tradition start
It just sort of happened! We’re not robots (we even made a video to address that exact point), so wanting to spend time together outside of working hours is an idea that comes up often. But logistically, with our team spread mostly between the Americas and Europe, there is no opportunity to casually get together.

We weren’t going to give up. So instead of tasking a bunch of developers with figuring out how to digitally simulate an in-person assemblage, we thought of an alternative: extend the invitation to our community’s community. Since remote work gives our team greater flexibility with time and location, we recognize that those qualities are sought after for a reason and we need to keep those reasons in mind. Many of us want to spend less time commuting and more time with the people we love, free of geographical constraints. We value the opportunity to work with greater freedom and independence. So naturally, a dinner invitation Clevertech-style shouldn’t define a time or a place.

And so #ClevertechOutToEat began!
Food Makes Friends
If the fastest way to a person's heart is through their stomach then there is nothing more heartwarming than your company acknowledging that our work-place community extends beyond our co-workers, and that those people deserve a meal too!

Because isn’t that the truth? Remote work can be very challenging merely because of the lack of in-person interaction. Even in a company like ours, where every workday begins with a team video call, the feeling of isolation is lessened but not snuffed out. However, a common attribute of a successful remote employee is having a solid support system along this journey. And the extent of appreciation for our extended community is evident in the stories that our team shares.
Grateful for Quality Time with Family
Last night, I took my mom, stepfather, and children out to dinner, thanks to Clevertech! I am so grateful for this opportunity to treat my family and show my appreciation for them. This job came at the most amazing time for my family. My husband was transferring with the Air Force and he had to attend trainings in different states. Working with Clevertech, it’s possible for me to stay with my mother and let my kids spend quality time with their grandparents. They have been a huge role in my remote life, helping me with my children and letting me stay by the beach while my husband is away. I am truly grateful, Clevertech, for the amazing experiences and freedom you are providing my family with. Thank you for a CleverNightOut!

Amber, South Carolina
Kicking Off a New Chapter
For #ClevertechOutToEat I took my wife to dinner at a restaurant she’s always wanted to go to.

It has been a long time since we thought about freedom and independence. Having freedom means we could have gone there much sooner. And being independent, as we have been since we made our first decision to live together, means that times like this should be much more frequent.

However, we never stop to think we can, and we always have an excuse not to (children, tiredness, etc).

So, thanks Clevertech for this culture, and for this moment; made us think twice about the decisions we can make.

Victor, Brazil
Celebrating Brave Changes
Took my husband and our good friend (also one of his medical school classmates) out for #ClevertechOutToEat to get some local bbq! Almost a year ago, we left the comfort of our life in the big city and came to the mountains for him to pursue his dreams which came with sacrifice for us both. The best part though - me finding Clevertech; a role, a company, and a culture that I love so much. Thank you for this kind gesture of allowing us to dine with our loved ones and reflect on why remote is important to us in our own ways!

Emily, United States
Recognizing the Day to Day Goodness
I took my girls out for a nice Saturday lunch after a good session in the park. Needless to say why these two are the most important people in my life, only that now more than ever I’m able to spend quality time with them. Thank you Clevertech!

Andre, United Kingdom
Seeing the Difference
You often hear that working remote can support a better work-life-balance but actually seeing the result of this opportunity paints a more impactful picture. We work well as a team because we communicate effectively, but one of the ways we strengthen our team is by sharing our stories, celebrating our unique experiences, and by showing our gratitude to the people that make this work. By taking the time to celebrate our shared values, individually yet all at once, we are all able to contribute to a greater shared connection.
Take the time to think about it Take the time to appreciate it Take the time to share your story


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    Want to peek into our daily work? Our coaches recount real world situations shared as learning opportunities to build soft skills. We share frameworks, podcasts and thinking tools for sr software developers.