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Building a face-to-face culture with a distributed team

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Ryan Johnson, Director of Categories, Upwork

With demand for workplace flexibility growing and remote work increasing, distributed teams have become more common. Organizations including Automattic, Mozilla, and Github are realizing the benefits of distributed teams. The benefits, however, are not without their trade-offs. So how can companies overcome these unique challenges to build a distributed team of happy, engaged and productive employees?

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Building a face-to-face culture with a distributed team

  1. 1. Building a face-to-face culture with a distributed team #RelateLive
  2. 2. Ryan Johnson Upwork Director of Categories @rjohnson008
  3. 3. “Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast”
  4. 4. Forging Strong Connections Online & Offline ● The #1 online chess website ● Founded in 2005 ● Fully distributed company ○ 60 programmers, content editors and support staff ○ Across 12 countries ● Entire team works from home
  5. 5. Creating a Structure Where Culture Can Thrive ● Creators of WordPress ● Founded in 2005 ● Fully distributed company ○ 450+ people ○ 140+ cities ○ 45+ countries ● Everyone works from location they choose
  6. 6. Fostering a Sense of Appreciation ● World’s largest freelancing website ● Founded in 1999 ● Firm believer in distributed teams ○ Hybrid engineering team ○ Fully distributed comms team
  7. 7. Three Key Takeaways Forge strong connections online and offline1 Create a structure where culture can thrive Foster a sense of appreciation 2 3

Ryan Johnson, Director of Categories, Upwork With demand for workplace flexibility growing and remote work increasing, distributed teams have become more common. Organizations including Automattic, Mozilla, and Github are realizing the benefits of distributed teams. The benefits, however, are not without their trade-offs. So how can companies overcome these unique challenges to build a distributed team of happy, engaged and productive employees?

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