Before I joined TEN7 full time as Director of Operations, I was a contractor, working about five hours per week as a Customer Success Manager. It wasn’t a huge time commitment. I was able to fit the work in among other clients. Still, something felt very different about my interactions with TEN7. I noticed how Ivan, our CEO, always made a point of asking me about my thoughts and opinions. Considering how small my role was, it was amazing to feel like my ideas were valued.
This experience is what drew me to be a part of the TEN7 team. It’s also why I am passionate about the value that guides this behavior: Be Mindful.
To me, Be Mindful is about caring and consideration for everybody who might be involved in a project. It goes beyond listening. You need to be ready to take other perspectives into account when you’re making decisions.
In my role on the leadership team at TEN7, I am intentional about inviting people to provide their insight, whether it’s our team members or our clients. You can’t always expect people to offer their thoughts if you aren’t making a point of asking them to contribute.
For example, three times a week I send out a “Polly” on Slack asking, “How is your mental charge at the moment?” If one of our team members responds that their battery is “empty” or “low,” I reach out to see if there’s something in their work lives that we could address to help them. Sometimes people express surprise to get such an immediate response, but I believe if you’re going to ask the question, it’s mindful to follow up on the answers. We want our team to be happy and we want to stay on top of any issues to prevent them from getting bigger.
Similarly, when it comes to projects or policies at TEN7, Be Mindful means we want to hear from everybody on the team, regardless of what their role is. We try not to make decisions in a vacuum because we know everyone has valid ideas and unique perspectives to bring to the table. When you invite people to contribute, you’re saying, “I value you. I value your opinion.” I think that completely changes the dynamic on the team.
Be Mindful plays out in the way we work with clients as well. If there is a project where we don’t think things are going in the right direction, we will be up front with our concerns. We will also ask questions and listen to be sure we understand our client’s perspective. It’s not about placing blame or trying to assert one view over another. We listen, learn, and come together to figure out the best path forward.
A big part of Be Mindful is communication which, by definition, is a two-way process. We're mindful of the language we use and how we position things. We want input, and we are always open to considering new ideas. It’s really important to me because everybody's voice really does matter.
When you pause, listen, and learn, you might be amazed with where it can take you. That’s why Be Mindful is a critical value as we bring ideas together to Make Things That Matter.
Other TEN7 Voices on Be Mindful
“I cannot think of a personal or corporate value as essential as Be Mindful. TEN7’s Values (teamwork, honesty, openness, inclusivity and mindfulness) contribute mightily to better partnerships with our clients and with our team members.
Being mindful of who you are, what you believe, the impact of your decisions and behavior and the various relationships you encounter is the foundation of leaving the world a better place than you have found it. I am very fortunate and proud to work for an organization that walks this critical walk.”
— Jonathan Freed, Podcast/Media Producer
“We take time as a team to listen to one another. We recap and follow up and respond to regular team surveys to be sure everyone’s voice is heard.
When you’re regularly told your voice is important, and the company’s actions and intentions support that, you start to believe it. That’s how you create a culture of listening to one another.
We all want to be here because we feel heard, because the team is adept at being mindful. It’s baked into our culture. That’s why our values are so interwoven - they all just make sense.”
— Erin Cardinal, Chief of Staff