Better international communication and Kiosked's NYC office
Kiosked now has offices all over the world, and I just spent the last 2 weeks in our New York branch.
Our company is expanding, and we're moving into offices in all the right places. I had the pleasure of being flown to our NYC office to get to know the staff there and how they function on a daily basis. I fully expected to be overwhelmed by the differences between NY and Helsinki, where our HQ is located, but the extent to which I would be wasn't clear until now - just several days before I depart.
I'd met a few of the people in our New York office previously, but the majority were relatively new. I can't accurately convey how great each and every one of them are, but it goes far beyond my expectations. It's the aha moment when you realise you're in the right place.
Having global offices requires having exceptional communication between them; anything less means certain failure of some degree. It's down to the relationships that you build every day you're abroad. It's been said a hundred times while I've been here in New York, but emailing or chatting with someone you don't know makes your organisation feel much larger and sterile than it actually is. There's a good chance you don't even know of these people or their roles - people who could potentially provide a great deal of help in situations in which you find yourself on regular occasion.
It's not always easy getting along with everyone you work with, but these people can (and should) be your friends. You spend countless hours, days, weeks with each other and probably fight less than the average married couple. You're all on the same team, and you're all heading in the same direction.
There's so much knowledge and experience to share, but we have to find a way to share it effectively between geographically dispersed locations in a multitude of timezones. Just like you spend time training the colleagues beside you and in your team, you have to devote time to sharing your experience with others in other offices. Organise regular calls or find other ways to stay synchronised - keeping in touch shows that each office and its staff are important in achieving the company's goal.
Spending time helping and training your remote counterparts does cost time, and sometimes a lot of it, but it's an investment in your company. Sure: ignoring everything and just powering through your work helps, but it's this attitude that encourages poor international communication, and it does wonders for destroying those precious relationships I mentioned earlier.
Travelling is amazing fun, but it's even better when you get to do it for work. It brings an enormous responsibility, however, to represent your home office in the most positive way you can. Indulge in getting to know your colleagues around the world, because their friendship and insight will surely help you and the company you work for to progress.
Soak it up.