Flexible working is built into the core of our mission here at Wordsmithie. We’ve found that offering our employees the ability to strike a work/life balance leads to creativity and productivity on the job. But an added benefit? We are an exceedingly green, environmentally friendly company.
We’re a distributed team, so we don’t utilize office space. Members of our team live in San Francisco, Singapore and all points in between. That means we don’t have one central office space where everyone converges every day. Not only does this mean we aren’t using energy to light and heat (or cool) a large office space, it keeps costs low so we can be more flexible in pricing our services.
None of our staff spends time commuting every day. We’ve all had jobs that keep us on the train or in the car for hours a day. We’ve cut out the commute time, giving our employees more time to explore their hobbies, spend time with family or burn the midnight oil (after a great home cooked dinner!) in the comfort of their own home. The result is that our team works hard and plays hard, too. Several members of our team have written and published books (see them here, here and here), a few have completed PhD and post-graduate work and yet others volunteer, teach, exercise and more. We’re saving loads of time, money (fuel and tolls) and above all, energy. (granted, some of our staff take occasional flights to summits, conferences and client meetings).
We keep in touch creatively through Slack, Whatsapp and Google Drive. Keeping lines of communication open is priority number one when your team works in numerous cities around the world, in various timezones. We keep in touch through a variety of virtual mediums that allow us to get and receive messages immediately. Bye-bye snail mail, email printouts and fax!
Resources are used at a minimum. Speaking of paper printouts, since every member of our team works from home, they are able to determine what kinds of office supplies they purchase and use. We don’t bulk order anything that will eventually go to waste. We can pass down that savings to our clients, but it also conserves resources such as paper.
At Wordsmithie, our working style also has multiple other benefits, including expanded opportunities for work/life balance and the ability for our ‘smithies to gain experience by working across multiple projects.
Our Chief Creative Officer Michael Gaylord says, “While the open-door policy I kept at my office could create off-the-cuff brainstorming magic as teammates and colleagues dropped by, my ability to live in Madrid — being immersed in another language and culture — helps me bring a whole new set of experiences and perspectives to my creative work at Wordsmithie. And if the way we work helps us be a greener organization, all the better.”
While this exact strategy may not work for every business, there are components of it that may be useful in every workplace (and save time and money).