Here is a transcript generated by of The Content Mix podcast interview with VeraContent’s Shaheen Samavati and Kyler Canastra, about managing remote teams successfully:

Kyler Canastra 0:03
Hi, everyone. Thanks for tuning in. I’m Kyler Canasta

Shaheen Samavati 0:07
and I’m Shaheen Samavati. We’re your hosts of The Content Mix Podcast. Today we’re going to be talking about managing remote teams, something that’s become a hot topic since lockdowns happening across the world in 2020, but very content. It’s something we’ve been doing since we started in 2016.

Kyler Canastra 0:21
And Sheena and I both have a lot of experience on this topic. So today’s episode will be a discussion on remote work, where we share our own experiences and the best practices we developed over the years. So to start, I guess the conversation Shaheen, what do you think are some advantages of managing a remote team in general?

Shaheen Samavati 0:39
Yeah, well, so like, like I mentioned, I mean, this is something we’ve been working on, we kind of worked with a hybrid model, before the lock downtime, and then we switch to complete remote work. And even now we’ve gone back to kind of hybrid again, but I think like in the content creation, industry, obviously, it’s a type of work that lends itself well to being done remotely, and having flexibility, like even back in the day, when I used to work in an office, as a writer, there was always a lot of flexibility, being able to work from home, because I think that managers understand that to be creative, sometimes you just need to be, you know, in a quiet environment, and able to focus. So I do think that is like that being able to choose the environment that you work in. And having that focused time to write I think is important for for writing teams,

Kyler Canastra 1:37
those creative juices to flow, especially if you’re able to be in an environment that is conducive to you.

Shaheen Samavati 1:42
And then I think like, from management perspective, obviously, like a big advantage of having a remote team is that you’re able to hire people anywhere in the world. And that’s been like a huge advantage for us. Because we’re a global content agency, and we’re working with writers everywhere in the world. And also, so in our case, we have like, writers who are freelancers. And that gives us a lot of flexibility to hire people from anywhere and have people who are in the markets who really know, the languages and stuff. But then we also have our core team is also remote. So that’s our project managers and our editors and management team, including ourselves. And yeah, I think, well, when we first Yeah, it’s given us the flexibility, like it’s kind of an advantage. I mean, it’s definitely an advantage for the team to be able to live and work from where they want. So, you know, when we went fully remote, we used to be all based in Madrid. And when we had this hybrid model, we used to go to the office two days a week. Now, we’re working fully remote, and we have just quarterly meetups. So that means that we are able to live outside of Madrid. So a lot out of Madrid I live in Malaga, now you live in Lisbon.

Kyler Canastra 2:54
So definitely helps a lot with employee satisfaction. For sure. It’s like really help them you know, giving your employees that freedom to choose where they want to live, whether it be you know, a city or small town or so it kind of helps them kind of like similar to the idea of like the writers being in their creative zone, it helps people to be in an environment that makes them happier, whether you’re working in management, or if you’re writing the content itself. But I also think like in terms of our work in social media, is something that’s really been an advantage for us because we get to manage community managers that are working in each market. So they’re always going to be on top of like the latest trends, knowing what’s going on within that market. And being able to interact better with that audience, it really gives us a competitive advantage, I think and allows us to really get be in tune with the social media content that we’re producing for different markets across Europe. And that case,

Shaheen Samavati 3:43
absolutely. Any other advantages you can think of, of working remotely or challenges perhaps?

Kyler Canastra 3:50
Yeah, I think, I think the advantages that you already mentioned, I think freedom of choosing where you want to work, being able to like have your own environment, create your own space, I do think there’s a lot of advantages in terms of happiness, I think when in terms of managing a team, because you know that your employees are able to kind of live a bit more flexible. You know, whether it be like with my son random, but like being able to do your laundry, when you’re working at home and like getting things done around the house, you’re able to take like little breaks and get things done that aren’t just work related. So I think it’s nice to have that balance. But I also think there’s a lot of challenges that come with managing a remote team. I think one of them obviously, the most obvious one is communication. I think that it’s really can be a challenge to you know, trust everyone that you’re working with to know that they’re going to be getting their tasks done, and making sure that they’re producing the work that they need to and communicating things across, I guess, different channels and an effective way. So whether it be like getting feedback or touching base on a project, I think it takes a lot more effort than maybe because if you’re in office space, traditional office space, you can just say like, Hey, let’s go for a walk or let’s go have a coffee and discuss this project but you In a remote setting, you really have to be conscious of like, you know how you’re reaching out to your team members, and how you’re going to be doing it. That’s not in a micromanaging way. Because I think it’s very easy to kind of fall into that trap of, you know, I’m going to manage every task that you my team is doing, and stay on top of them without giving them the independence. So it’s kind of finding that balance. I think that’s a huge challenge from a management perspective. But I also think another challenge could just be like, communicating and type of how do you communicate with people, I think our advantage that we have at very content is that we’re all love language, and writing, I think that’s kind of what brought us all together, even if we’re not working on that on a daily basis. And I think for us, we really care about how we say things, how we communicate with our team, you know, and whether it’s using emoji or exclamation points or kind of showing more personality in your writing. When you’re communicating on channels like Slack, I think it could be very helpful to show off your personality and show that you’re still human, even though so is this like, I guess making more of a conscious effort can be difficult as well, in terms of how you communicate ideas, or feedback or anything that’s important for your team. But I don’t know, if you’re had that same experience in your experience, Shaheen or any other challenges that you can think of?

Shaheen Samavati 6:13
Yeah, definitely, I think like, just the big, the big differences, the switch from having in person meetings to having, like, we used to plan most of our meetings on those two days a week that we were in the office. And now we do all of our meetings, virtually, like a lot of companies are now. And just the dynamic of meetings changes a lot. So I think that’s, that’s why it’s been important for us to maintain some in person contact. That’s why we do these quarterly quarterly meetings. So you see everyone in person, and we meet up for two to three days at a time. And we kind of pack in some important meetings, then. And we do some social activities and stuff. So it keeps that like Team vibe in the company. Like, I think it’s important to have that in person contact to maintain the culture of the company,

Kyler Canastra 6:57
for sure. And another challenge I just thought of too, is that we’re talking about all these people being in different places. But I think, you know, managing a team when you have your, like your teammates are living in different time zones. I think that’s like a bigger challenge that’s coming up nowadays, too, because a lot of companies want to be able to hire, like we said, it’s an advantage you can hire from a bigger talent pool, because they’re all located in different places, but you can hire them remotely. But I do think it can be a challenge like balancing time zones, I think we we don’t see it so often. And our day to day work in Vera, because a lot of us are based in Europe. And it’s like there’s like three main time zones in Europe. So it’s pretty easy to balance that. But I do think like when we work a lot with clients in North America, for example, they we have to be conscious of okay, they only can meet at this time, or we have to deliver things at certain times. So their end of day is gonna be different than ours, I do think that could be a lot like a challenge. When you’re working with team members to like, if you’re gonna be setting deadlines, you have to be aware that you’re setting them in a clear way. So they know exactly like this this time zone, you can’t just say like end of day or before lunch, because that’s going to be totally different, depending on where the person is. But also Yeah, just knowing who’s available when they’re available for kind of balancing the schedules as well can be quite challenging. But

Shaheen Samavati 8:11
being really specific about the times when you’re talking about times is important. I found that I tend to default to talking about Eastern Standard Time. A lot of times when I’m talking with international clients, or, or GMT, like one of those is like, because I don’t know where everyone on their team is. No, you use one, you know, one standard, and you use that to like talk all the time. But when I’m dealing with us clients, I usually talked about ESD, even though they might be in California, they tend to be able to like, do their

Kyler Canastra 8:42
super true. And like choosing GMT, which Greenwich time also I think it’s a standard. It’s like the zero hour. So it makes sense to like kind of localizing it that way for your audience. And then the US if you say Eastern Standard Time, they should know how to do the math. And then in Europe, GMT as well. Now, Shaheen, you mentioned how when we were like before the pandemic, we were already in a hybrid model. So remote work, I think it’s something that you valued from the founding of the company. But I guess looking back over the years now, it’s been like five or six years of very content and just really like for you and your opinion, what is the success to remote work at Vera content? Why has it been something that’s worked before? You know, the whole world changed? And why is it still working now? For us?

Shaheen Samavati 9:27
Yeah, I think for us, like, it’s been an important part of our culture from the beginning, because we’re such an international team. And I think people one thing we didn’t really talk about the advantages is like the the ability to not only work from home but to work remotely to work in different locations. And I think that’s something people have really, really valued from the beginning because we’re all international. A lot of us are not from Spain, we’re based in Spain. For example, ourselves, the ability to like go, go visit your family and work from there go to other countries like I just spent on Once in the north of Europe, so And when was working remotely from there? So I think like that ability to travel has been like a huge attract, like a huge recruiting tool for us, like really value that and, and it’s been, it’s helped us recruit this like really international team. And then I think well, in terms of like key to our success, I think. Well, I mean, not to say that we’re the most successful ever, but I mean, I think we’ve been pretty successful building a really strong company culture, not to be boastful, you know, I’m proud of it. I’m sure there’s other people who also do it very well. But, um, but yeah, no, I think one thing that was been important to us is just really like, make sure we hire people who share our values, and to always, like, remind people of our values. So we have these four values care, you know, you can save them again, yeah, it’s about communication, attention to detail, being really curious, and helping each other being collaborative. So those are, those are four big values. And I think like, having those articulated, and like kind of the mission of the company and all of that, having that really clear, and making sure everyone’s on the same page has helped us maintain like that culture, despite not being in the same place. It’s one of our keys to success.

Kyler Canastra 11:20
Yeah, for sure. I agree. I mean, as someone that’s been part of that system for a while I do agree helped us become successful. And I really can’t believe we didn’t mentioned travel in the beginning how, you know, this is very conducive for people that like to travel. And I think in our case, at Vera, all of us our love languages, being international people living in different countries, and travel is kind of part of our DNA. So I do think that like that’s helped a lot. Like you said, like, in my case, like being from the East Coast of the US, I’m able to like work from the US very easily without, you know, missing many hours in terms of like, with clients, or with other people on the team that can overlap while being in the US without having to take vacation every time I go. And that really helps make things a lot more flexible for us. And I think that really helps us become successful. Because just keep

Shaheen Samavati 12:06
in touch. It lets us keep in touch with our cultures as well, which is important when you’re doing this kind of work in localization. If we spent 100% of our time in Spain, we wouldn’t be as good at localization. Because, keeping in touch with your own culture, which you’re often localizing into and knowing about other cultures, because you’re traveling there, I think that actually helps a lot in doing the work that we do.

Kyler Canastra 12:31
Yeah, I think it’s really cool too, because like you said, you just spent a couple of weeks in Belgium, for example. We’re able to also do that within Europe. So working in this industry, we’re able to go to those markets that we’re working in and get first-hand experience and learn a bit better about how they work. Even if it’s interacting with freelancers, interacting with clients or working with team members who are based there, we’re able to understand a bit more about their culture and be more aware at the same time. So it kind of allows us to explore the world. Which I think is really great.

Shaheen Samavati 13:00
Yeah, so well, that goes into another question that I had is, you know, we work a lot with freelance content creation, content, content creators. In addition to our in house, project managers, and editors, you’ve worked a lot with freelancers in your, in the past as a project manager. So can you talk a little bit about how we build those trusting and long lasting relationships?

Kyler Canastra 13:26
For sure. I think, yeah, for me, that was a highlight being a project manager was relationships, I was able to build with freelance content creators around the world. And kind of just building that nice, I don’t know how you’d call it, but like a gentle banter, right? Having that good, like back and forth with someone and kind of building that trust. I think, for me, the first was just being really human. I think that was so important to me. And any communication that I have, with any freelancer, whether it be like, you know, a new assignment, or I don’t know, I think it was just always important for me to ask them, like, Hey, how are you doing? And then when, like, the relationship evolves, and you get to learn a bit more about them, you can kind of ask more specific questions like, Oh, how’s summer going in Belgium? Or how was that surf trip you took a couple of weeks ago. And just by adding a little bit of a personal touch, to show that you really care about them and not just work, you’re not just there to, you know, assign them work every day. I think that really helps. But also, I think having the mentality of treating them as a team member is so important. Like, like you said before, like within the core team, we really value like our core values as a company, like it’s something that we really keep in mind. And we want to like, and I think a lot of that is collaboration that’s like a big part of our identity. And I think by including these freelancers, as part of that identity and part of that mission, and you know, when we’re working on projects, it’s not I think a lot of our project managers really care about the work they’re doing and that involves, you know, the Freelancers they’re working with, because they’re such integral parts of the project. So really getting them to be involved to feel like they have the creative say, in the work that they’re doing and feeling that they’re you know, accomplishing something with a very constant team, I think it’s so essential. So I do think like, those two factors are really important and have been like a key direct success, working with freelancers, and having those long lasting relationships, because we kind of build trust, just by being like a human centered team. I think we’re very personable. And we try to make everything fun, and we’re not, yes, we do. We’re very serious with our work. But at the same time, we kind of are able to be, you know, light in terms of communication. And I think a lot of times I think, for me, that’s been like the key for success to have good relationships and a lot of the Freelancers now that I’ve had relationships with them, I have friendships with them. And you know, I just like you said, I moved to Portugal, and there are some freelancers here that now are my friends is because we built this relationship just via communication. So I think a lot of it is just Yeah. Being human. That’s so important.

Shaheen Samavati 15:52
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. And like, I think like building this community of freelancers, like making them feel like they’re part of a community is kind of what you were getting alluding to, that’s always been something that’s been in our mind from the beginning with our whole content mix and like having this online communities that we in the in person events, that’s something that freelancers, well, we would like to do in more cities, but we’ve engaged a lot of people who live in Spain. Yeah, so yeah, totally agree. Like, similar

Kyler Canastra 16:23
to the idea of like how, like, we think it’s important for our teams to meet in person couple of times a year, but even having those opportunities to meet if the collaborators that we work with in different markets will be great, too. So it’s like, I think communities really keen because people feel invested in our work, and totally, for sure. But I guess like the in terms of it can be interesting working with collaborators, right? If you’re working on the same projects all the time, or if you’re doing like, no, no, every week at the same translation. And it’s really good to, you know, have reliable Freelancer that you’re working with and that sense, but I guess a good question for you seen is how do we keep the work interesting for people to want to be part of that community still? Because I do think, yeah, we can be really nice, and, you know, super human forward and human centered, but the work might not be so engaging. So I guess, how do we, I guess, in your opinion, how can we keep the work interesting and keep our people engaged in what we’re doing from a remote setting?

Shaheen Samavati 17:20
Yeah. Yeah, I mean, of course, like, we try to switch up, like the types of things people are working on, so that it doesn’t get like monotonous. But it’s, I think, like, one point that you were making, I think, is when it comes to the freelance writers and editors and community managers. I think like, a lot of times when you’re working with freelancers and companies I’ve worked in in the past, like the relationship with the Freelancer is very kind of transactional, it’s just like, you give them the assignment, and then they submit it. And that’s kind of like the extent of the relationship. And I think, like, what we’ve worked really hard on is to have to go beyond that, like you said, make them feel part of the team and show them that we care about what they’re doing so that they also care, right? Because I think like, it’s really hard to like really invest and put your heart into the work that you’re doing if the person who assigned it to you isn’t, isn’t doesn’t communicate with you about it, and, and like give you feedback and explain what’s important, what’s not like, they have to be invested in it for you to be invested in it. And I think that’s something that we do really well. And I think, well, definitely, we talked in our last episode about editing, or in a previous episode, hopefully. But about editing process. And I think that’s a huge part of keeping people engaged to just the feedback that they get in the editing process. But yeah, like you’re saying, not every piece of work is going to be super interesting. But I think, because it’s just about showing that, that we’re engaged. That’s what keeps them engaged.

Kyler Canastra 18:45
For sure. I do think like, with a lot of the collaborators that we work with, having them get involved in different aspects of account, for example, like if we’re assigning a new account being like giving them the responsibility to, you know, help develop the tone and work with the client, and have that relationship treating them like experts in their field, which they are the people that we work with. I think that helps them feel empowered about the work they do too. And sometimes we have, you know, people training other linguist or funding for a project is really important. But we also work with freelancers to on internal initiatives as well, which I think is really important to keep them invested in the company. But I also think for like our own team, I think going back to like our core value of we love our values, I’m very content. The like, being relentlessly curious, I think that we are never satisfied with just like, I don’t know, keeping our processes the same or just like kind of, I don’t know, being negligent, I guess, in the sense of like, not being proactive in terms of trying to better ourselves. And I think we always try to get our team involved with different like quarterly initiatives or with different like, I don’t know, we have coffee breaks during the work, though, on Fridays, for example. And we have our team conflict quizzes, I don’t know keeping people engaged and kind of with the new ideas, new activity is new, helping no better processes within the company, I guess like not making it just about our daily work, but kind of helping them have kind of maybe more short term goals and long term goals for the company and kind of seeing how they can our team can be empowered right to want to keep learning and to keep growing. I think we do a really good job of that. And that helps people stay more engaged. Because if we’re just, you know, doing our standard work every day, yes, I’m sure it’s the product, we’re working on a very, very interesting but to give our employees to something else that’s kind of helps the company as a whole and keeps them engaged in that way that I think really helps keep the job dynamic. Because, yes, some things are very repetitive in the work we do, because we’re producing content, and it’s something we have to, you know, adhere to schedules and stuff like that. So, you know, it Yes, it can be, you know, sometimes monotonous, but at the same time, I think we do a really good job by like, inspiring people, but encouraging them to really meet me inspiring, encouraging them to, you know, have a stake in like our future as a company and knowing that, like their little niche could be a very small initiative, but how big of an impact that will have on the team. So I think we do a really, really good job about allowing people to take their ideas and run with them.

Shaheen Samavati 21:10
Yeah, and from like an operational perspective, I think like, the tools we’ve put in place to like collect feedback from the team have been really good for engaging people, and also just like really listening to them and implementing their ideas. Because we have like several things that we do there, as you know, like, like, well, we have these regular meetings with like one on ones with members of the management team, and every single editor and project manager gets to, like, have their say, on feedback on how we could do things better. And and then we also have, like, our monthly strategy meetings where we talked about, like, problems we can solve like, yeah, so I think we have these kinds of communication tools and places to like, always be getting feedback.

Kyler Canastra 21:51
I think one thing that’s really cool, and you probably won’t mention it, but as our listeners will know that she is the CEO of our company, and she does a weekly initiative to meet with one member of the team like one on one. So they can share their feedback directly with her and kind of share their ideas. And I think that’s really, really cool, that we do something like that, because it really allows contact with someone that’s kind of seeing the company from the operational point of view and caring from the stakeholders within that and knowing that their voice will be heard. So if they express a concern to you Shaheen, like I’ve seen it in action, you bring that to the table, we discuss it like, I think that really is such a cool way to have people being engaged to because they know that their voice is going to be heard. And just like you’re not this figure that sits in the distance, you know, like you want to make contact, you want to get to know them as well. So I think that’s really, really cool. For sure.

Shaheen Samavati 22:40
And of course, Kyler does the same thing with clients, like I do their feedback with regular meetings, as well as with just like getting back from all the stakeholders.

Kyler Canastra 22:51
Now we’re talking about needing for video meetings. And I think the big question that we’ve heard the past, like two years has been like, how do we not only make sure that our like our team, for example, doesn’t burn out on video calls and being connected all the time. So Shaheen, in your opinion, what are some like good practices to avoid video burnout? And just like feeling like you have to be connected to your computer or your phone all the time?

Shaheen Samavati 23:15
Yeah, that’s a good question. I haven’t like completely solve this. I think it’s hard to balance when when you are doing like, all of your work on the computer. I mean, personally, I tried to like cluster meetings. So I have like a time of like, certain times of day that I do certain types of meetings and then try to have other parts of day work. I don’t write so I cluster most of my meetings in the morning, for example. I know something we’ve. Yeah, I mean, I think just like having a really clear purpose for every meeting, and this is something we’ve actually been working on recently is that clarifying the purpose of every meeting, making sure every meeting has a really clear agenda that the timings are defined that I think like, it’s so important that meetings are efficient when they are and like not only efficient, but like, useful, like they have a purpose. Because just you can end up spending a lot of time just being connected and talking and not getting when it’s not necessary. And then you end up being super burnt out on the video calls. So trying to limit like the num amount of time spent on calls and making sure every call is really like purposeful.

Kyler Canastra 24:23
Yeah, I mean, we’ve done a good job with that. That too. I feel like we kind of reevaluate a couple times a year, like okay, what meetings do we have? Are the three need to have all them what’s the their purpose, what agenda do we have? But I also think another thing we’ve done for the past couple years is like, all meetings are 45 minutes, like in the schedule, even though sometimes they go to an hour, but I think by having that 45 minute limit. It’s really Yeah, that you thought of that. So that way, it’s like, in our mind, like subconsciously, we’re thinking okay, we only have 45 minutes, but it kind of helps us be more concise. If you only have like that one hour to have a call. So I think that definitely helps a lot too. Definitely.

Shaheen Samavati 25:03
Yeah, I mean, if you haven’t, do you have any personal tips on like avoiding virtual burnout? Yeah, I

Kyler Canastra 25:10
think it’s like really important to, I think like going back to what I said before, like doing your laundry, or I don’t know making yourself a cup of coffee or going for a five minute walk, I think it’s really important to be conscious of that. Because it’s so easy to like, if you have worked a lot of work to do and tasks, it’s it’s easier to bang through the mall, or like go through your list, and then you realize like an hour and a half has gone by and you haven’t moved. So I think it’s really important to like, not be so hard on yourself. And so I feel like you have to be connected all the time. But like, there’s, that’s a good method, I guess you could be the guest, it’d be like going outside and going for walks. I think it’s really helpful or doing things around the house. But I also think it’s really good to like, set your notifications, like, with Slack, for example, make sure like after a certain hour, at the end of the day, like the your notifications are off. Or like if you have Gmail and you’re using that on your phone, like maybe set it off the push notifications for that. So you’re not constantly seeing work emails all day. But when you’re checking your emails, because you’re checking it not because you’re getting notifications. So I think it’s really important to get the monitor your notifications as well. So you don’t feel overwhelmed or feel like I guess like tied to like, I have to like really get this done now because someone’s messaged me nonstop. So they even go through slack to kind of knowing what limitations is that they’re conducive for you? Yeah, I totally agree.

Shaheen Samavati 26:29
I guess it depends a little bit on your role in terms of how much you can like my role, I can control it quite a lot. But like, so I like personally, I like to, well, I like I’m only on like slack in the mornings, like from nine until one and I tried to cluster all my meetings between 10 and one. So that that’s all like my, yeah, like all my distractions, I guess. And all the things coming from other people are in the morning. And then in the afternoons, I can do my focus time and get things done. I know some people like to do it the opposite way, because they’re like, more productive in the mornings, or whatever. But yeah, I think everyone has to find what works for you. And obviously like what also works with your team, because you have to coordinate schedules, of course. But then when you’re working with clients, or freelancers, obviously, like project managers, for example, have a lot of messages that they have to deal with all the time. So I think that’s a different role. It’s different, but I do think that you still can even enroll like that, like, put yourself more in the driver’s seat by like, like managing your notifications in a way that like you’re not constantly getting notifications like, but that you’re just you’re checking in at certain times. So that you’re always answering, like in a prompt, prompt way, but not like being distracted every time a notification comes

Kyler Canastra 27:46
in. For sure. I think that’s really important as well. And I also think like, what what we do from a management perspective is that we give our a lot of our employees independence. So like we’re not, you know, we write to them, we don’t expect the message like instantaneously, or I feel like we’re able to, you know, if our work if people want to like, allocate 20 minutes every hour to writing back to people or sending emails like that, and then focus on other things like in concentration mode, or, you know, we allowed them to do that. I think that allowing people to feel more empowered over how they are connected, and how they like receive their notifications is really important, because everyone’s different. Some people really like the constant notifications like that gives them a rush. And they I don’t know, that helps them get through the day makes them feel productive. Yeah, but they’re actually knocking things out. So I think by recognizing how all of our employees are different, and the way they work, and kind of embracing that and letting them run with it, it really helps people to not feel like to get that burnout, either because it’s on their own terms, rather than what we tell them to do, for example.

Shaheen Samavati 28:49
Yeah. And then we’re like, we’re talking about these monthly meetings that we do, which a lot of it is about sharing best practices, where we talk about different topics, but I think like we’re actually having a topic about coming up in one of our next full team meetings where we’re going to share best practices about communication. So I think like, just sharing what works for others who are in a similar role, like I think really helps people like find their groove

Kyler Canastra 29:13
completely, for sure. Now, I do think like a lot of us, too. Another question that’s come like goes hand in hand with the burnout is kind of maybe how can you stay productive and like healthy in terms of your working space, your home environment while working fully from home? Because I’m sure like right now to like a lot of people who are listening to this are probably in a remote working situation or, you know, hybrid situation. So a lot of a lot of our listeners are probably curious to know, like what we do on a personal level to stay productive and healthy at home. So yes, Jean, for you. How do you kind of keep a positive and productive environment within your home space?

Shaheen Samavati 29:55
Yeah, I mean, I think having a dedicated work area is really important and I think I’m Usually not everyone can do that basically, because of like, just like the space you might have in your room. But at least like creating the feeling of like, this is my work spot, even if it’s a part of your living room, that is, when I go there, I’m working. And when I’m anywhere else I’m not working. And actually, one thing we didn’t mention before is that we do offer a co working the possibility for co working to all our employees. And I think that is a nice thing if you can do it, because yeah, like for some people is really important to have like a separate working space to get out of their house and to interact with other people. And I think that, like a really depends on your preference. Because like, for me personally, even though I have coworking passing can go to the co working I like never go other people. Other people use it a lot. So I think it just depends on how you like to work and how important it is for you to like, get out of your house and be around other people. But I think and also like, what other home obligations you might have, like, for me having a child and everything, it’s like, nice for me to be nearby at home. But um, but yeah, I think anyway, yeah, we have this

Kyler Canastra 31:12
option, even if you don’t have the option, it’s like really good to be able to go to a cafe or work somewhere else, that’s not your home. I think that’s also a good way to like mix it up for people that kind of feel trapped at home. But also think like, it’s so important when you’re saying like having a separate space. And that separate space could be like, I remember when I lived in a studio apartment in Madrid, I didn’t have space to have like a home office. But like, I made sure that like I worked at my dining table. And that was like my dedicated workspace I never like would work from bed, for example. Because it for me, it’s important to like associate bed with the sleeping and relaxing and then like, yeah, it’s so important. It might sound like really weird that you have to do that. But it’s like, like, psychologically, you have to have that separate space because you’re going to be more productive. Some people say like wearing shoes, for example, like wearing like putting on your shoes, tying your shoes. And like even though you’re not leaving the house helps people to psychologically be more engaged, because it feels like they’re like not in a comfortable environment. So I think like little things like that, like fine tuning your workspace. Getting a standing desk, for example, can be helpful as well. I think you’re standing at one right now. And I have one as well. So it’s good to like stand up once in a while and work on your feet. But I also think like exercise is something that’s really important. I think in terms of like nature, you go for a walk, or you go to the gym before even like during your lunch break or something to like mix it up. It’s good to get the blood flowing, because it can be kind of stagnant. Working in one place all day. For sure.

Shaheen Samavati 32:41
Totally. Yeah, I think just like building a routine that works for you. And that like, like, for me personally, I gotten into the routine of like, I don’t know if it’s the best routine, but I go out for a coffee almost every morning. And that’s just like my excuse to like get out of the house before I start work. So it’s not like the most economical routine.

Kyler Canastra 33:00
Unfortunately, insane. Coffee is not like going to Starbucks in New York, for example. More reasonable, like, helps you get out of the house. Clear your mind a bit far today.

Shaheen Samavati 33:15
Yeah, exactly. Go for a walk. Now I take my daughter to daycare before. So it’s like I do those things in the morning, get out the house, I have to get dressed for that, you know, and then I come back and I’m like, Okay, now I’m starting my workday. Like, I feel like, there’s been times in the past where I was like, didn’t have a great morning, I think it’s just important to have like an established morning routine that you that starts your day like that’s really for having a healthy day, rather than just kind of like rolling out of bed and getting on the computer and feeling.

Kyler Canastra 33:44
Like get your brain activated before whether it be with coffee or going for a walk going to the gym. Also, I think another point that you just brought up is like getting dressed, I think it’s super important. Like don’t roll out of bed in your pajamas and go to this computer. I think that, again, it’s this whole idea of like separating work from relaxation, that I think we have a lot of temptations in the home to, you know, get into that work mode. But I think it’s so important that we make conscious efforts to make sure that our work environments different from our home environment, even though they may overlap in many ways. So even the smallest thing can help

Shaheen Samavati 34:19
for sure. Yeah, I find like the motivation of the coffee is like a good reason for me to like get out of the house like where’s like if it rather than just, yeah, just having a reason something to like, look forward to I guess exactly. I really like going to the gym, that could also be a motivation

Kyler Canastra 34:38
across the street, so it’s very easy for me to go but

Shaheen Samavati 34:41
it used to be easy routine that you’re gonna actually do every day.

Kyler Canastra 34:44
That helps walk two minutes, and I’m there but I just didn’t think it’s important that helped. Like if I don’t go to the gym in the morning, you can feel the difference like your brains not activated or so I think like moving is really important as well. So yeah, I think we’ve come to the end of today. is a conversation because I feel like we could talk more and more about this as well. But I do think we shared a lot of good tips and kind of were able to explain a bit more to our audience why working remotely has always been part of our identity as a company, but also that something that’s been successful for us as well. And I hope that, you know, our listeners can take these skills and apply them to their companies as well, even if it’s a different industry or different sectors like that, as well. Now, yeah, so as always, Shaheen, thank you very much for joining me today, as always, and I want to thank everybody for listening in. For more perspective on global content, marketing, and other topics like remote working in this case, be sure to check out Vera And if you’d like to get in touch with either Shaheen or me, or if you have any interesting topics or ideas for an upcoming episode, feel free to reach out to us at MCs at Vera And keep tuning to the podcast from our perspective on topics related to global content creation. Thanks, everybody. See you all soon. Bye. Thank you

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