Staying Social

Distributed teams need to work together and communicate intensively. Work is always easier when you know the person you’re communicating with. That’s why Hygge Companies not only encourage personal interactions during team calls, meetups, and workations but also organize Hygge Roulette to foster interpersonal communication.

Team calls

Working remotely doesn’t mean working alone. To keep everyone involved, Hygge Companies have regular calls where team members share their work and lives. Before the call, the team leads prepare a slide to talk about the progress of their products and milestones. The presentation with these slides is made available to everyone in the company, and it serves as a record of all the topics covered during these calls. These meetings are also a great opportunity to achieve understanding on those rare occasions, where asynchronous communication is not enough.

Hygge Work culture encourages:

  • Saying thank you while being kind and mindful about others. For example, thanking someone in public might be empowering for some people, but embarrassing for others.
  • Turning on video during calls when possible. The asynchronous approach requires lots of text-based communication, so if you know the person behind the text, it will be easier to prevent conflict.
  • Having periodic workations around the world where team members get to know each other in an informal setting.
  • Contacting anyone in the company. If you feel hesitant about reaching out to your remote colleagues (and it’s totally normal), read about how to make small talk at work remotely.

To stay connected as a team, leverage video calls to get to know each other. Yes, we do want to see your pet, say “Hi” to your partner, and know more about that painting on your wall. Engage with colleagues on nonwork topics through ad-hoc video calls, in company chat or other communication tools. You don’t need to sit at a desk all day, so why not take calls from different locations? Start with a coffee shop and slowly work your way up to taking a call in a hot tub. Feel free to share photos of your work or vacation locations or tell others more about your crystal collection.

Meetups and workations

A workation is a time for the whole team to hang out together in a beautiful place and do whatever they like. Hygge Companies usually arrange workations 3–4 times a year. They choose an interesting location and book a cozy central venue, where everyone can come to work, chat, and share some time together. Team members are welcome to bring their plus-ones (usually partners or family members). All activities during the workation are up to the team: anyone can initiate any kind of gathering, and the Hygge Company will foot the bill, because the only reason for the workations is to socialize.

Team meetups are usually smaller, one-off activities. A Hygge Company will pay for any kind of entertainment if the initiator tells others about it and finds at least one other person from the team to join them.

Hygge Roulette

Hygge Roulette is a way to stay connected, even when a team is remote. Volunteers from the team put together a nice package for other team members. It’s called “roulette”, because the volunteers change every other time, so every teammate has the chance to choose and send something nice to their colleagues.

Every 3–4 months, a Hygge team sets Hygge Roulette off by picking 2 volunteers to create Hygge Packages for the team. Someone from Hygge works with the volunteers to help with putting everything together and overseeing delivery.

Hygge Package ideas:

  • Remote working IT gadgets
  • Travel
  • Personal interests
  • Seasonal consumables
  • Holidays (Halloween, Christmas, local holidays)
  • Safety/security
  • Handmade crafts

The easiest way to distribute these packages is via global shopping platforms like Amazon or Aliexpress/Alibaba.