In remote culture, you get exposed not only to the professional side of your teammates, but also their home lives, pets, plants, and lifestyles. It makes the working environment a lot more personal at times and allows us to realize that people have other priorities and commitments outside of work.
I work at Hopin as a Product Marketing Manager. My role involves bringing together many cross functional teams (product, sales, CSM, marketing, etc) to make an impact on the products we build and how we tell our company’s story externally to customers.
Tell us about your team!
How big is it?
The broader Product Marketing team consists of 8 people total but we are divided into different pillars. Half of us focus on the product, and the other half focus on go-to-market and competition.
Where are your teammates located?
All over the world! Hopin has an extremely global workforce. Most of the PMM team is located throughout America, with one teammate in Dublin, Ireland. But my product counterparts are located in Poland, Hungry, Spain, and Bulgaria.
What does your team do? What are you responsible for?
Our team tells the Hopin story to the world. We are responsible for 2 key areas:
Messaging and positioning our products externally via the website, social media, content, etc
GTM enablement to educate go-to-market teams on what products are releasing and how to speak about them with customers
What are the components of a strong remote culture?
A strong remote culture consists of being aware of everyone’s working style, respecting each other's time zones and work-life balance, and bringing your whole self to work.
Whether you are extroverted or introverted, the last few years have shown us the need to adapt to remote working, and I think it’s important for all teammates to be aware of each other's preferences. It’s important to talk about if people want more time for group brainstorming in live calls, if they want to start a new slack channel for a specific project, or if they prefer to work asynchronously. This awareness helps us stay connected without being overwhelmed.
In remote culture, you get exposed not only to the professional side of your teammates, but also their home lives, pets, plants, and lifestyles. It makes the working environment a lot more personal at times and allows us to realize that people have other priorities and commitments outside of work. With that, it’s important to respect people’s boundaries for when to have meetings and when not to.
Similarly, bringing your whole self to work is an important aspect of any work culture, so your teams know where your head is at if you are having a rough day or don’t always raise your hand to take on that extra project. It’s important to create a team culture where everyone can feel empowered and supported to be themselves, no matter their life circumstance.
Strong remote cultures are built on strong connections. Strong connections are built with Hailey.
How do you make sure your team is happy and engaged in their work?
This is something that is continuously evolving and not a linear conversation, and that’s okay! I think ultimately, this starts with creating a culture that is open to having hard conversations and open to feedback. It’s important for managers to check in with employees regularly to make sure they are engaged and excited to open their laptops. And if not, to figure out how to improve things on both sides.
It’s important to talk about if people want more time for group brainstorming in live calls, if they want to start a new slack channel for a specific project, or if they prefer to work asynchronously. This awareness helps us stay connected without being overwhelmed.
What's your biggest challenge as a remote leader?
The biggest challenge of remote culture is making sure employees feel connected to the company. Although remote culture provides flexibility and great opportunity to hire people from all over the world, it can be challenging to prioritize meeting in person every so often. I believe the in-person component is critical even in remote environments and it is only natural.
We usually start meetings with an icebreaker or just informally checking in with one another about life, what shows we are watching, and weekend fun.
Some great topics we’ve discussed are:
What’s your favorite noodle?
What’s the grossest thing your dog has done?
Have you ever had a near-death experience?
Things we see on TikTok
Products & Tools
One thing I love about our team is that everyone is super considerate when a team member has a birthday or big life event. We always chip in together to buy flowers, a small gift, or even a massage.
Resources for remote leaders
To grow within Product Marketing, I always rely on the Product Marketing Alliance for great content and educational material. They also have a great slack channel for those looking to meet other product marketers!
I love listening to podcasts about leadership. A few I’d highly recommend are:
Unlocking Us- Brene Brown
A Bit of Optimism- Simon Sinek
Make your company a great place to work
"Adding Hailey has been by far the lowest effort, highest impact thing we’ve done to bring our globally scattered team together!" - Mary Grace Reich