Get to know Laura Schmitz, Marketing Manager for WeMaintain France and remote employee!

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How long have you worked for WeMaintain?

I’m a newbie! I started working at WeMaintain a little less than 2 months ago.

Have you been a remote employee before at your previous companies? 

In 2018, after 4 years in a Parisian startup, I wanted to move to the South of France and closer to the sea. The company had accepted that I work remotely. This was before Covid, so they were quite a precursor on this subject. They actually already had several employees, rather on the tech side, who were working remotely without it being a problem. 

In retrospect, I think it was a difficult time for me. I arrived in a new city where I didn't know anyone yet. On top of that, my team (marketing) was not used to remote working and the tools were not yet in place. Communication was difficult, I didn't have all the information and I missed the team a lot. I felt like I was missing out on good times and gradually becoming unmotivated.  

What has been your experience working with WeMaintain?

So considering that last experience, I was a bit apprehensive about working full remote again. Especially for the beginning of a new role where you need to have access to a lot of information. But this has been completely different from my previous experience. 

At WeMaintain, many people work from all over the world and the process of sharing digitally is very well practiced. Indeed, the company’s culture makes the communication very fluid and natural.

We use many tools of course, such as Slack, Pitch, Notion and Google Meet, that are very powerful and enable such strong communication. 

But one thing I love and that makes a real difference, is the fact that we have many rituals to stay connected and updated. We have virtual rituals, for example, weekly meetings with the whole French team or 1:1 with different people working in different chapters or squads.

We also have “real life” rituals. Every few months, WeMaintain organises outings for the team in small groups of 8-10 people. The principle is to create random groups with members of different teams and let them organise themselves in terms of location, activity, logistics etc., with a predefined budget. I think it's amazing! It's a great way to share quality time with colleagues we don't work with on a daily basis. It’s a real booster for the “team spirit” energy. 

How does working with your own team and other teams work out?

I have daily 15 minute meetings with my manager, which is very helpful to stay aligned on the current subjects. For topics we need to discuss more in depth, we have a longer weekly meeting.

The only risk with remote working is having an excessive amount of meetings. Asynchronous work works very well and has many benefits! 

In fact, we communicate a lot through Slack, we work on collaborative tools like Pitch and Notion, and we reserve the meetings to brainstorm or for specific problem solving. Reviews are often done during weekly and monthly meetings so the whole team is updated. This is a great way to engage the whole team on many different topics and keep communication flowing.

Any more details you want to share about being a remote employee?”

This flexibility ensures an autonomy that provides a real quality of life. However, I think that not all companies have the culture, the tools or the methods adapted for this. In my opinion, the most important thing is to have a culture that cares for its employees and has healthy and natural communication.

One other thing I love about remote working? Going for a lunchtime run along the Garonne river and having ideas or solutions coming to me for ongoing projects... It's priceless.

If you're interested in working with WeMaintain, in the office or out, check out the available roles we have here! ⬅️

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