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Not long ago, after a particularly busy week, I had two different members of the TEN7 team reach out to me out of concern. They noticed I had been putting in long hours. They told me, “Don’t ever work that much in a week! If you’re worried about not getting things done, ask for help and we can split the load.”

Part of me was blown away by these acts of kindness and empathy. Another part of me was not surprised in the least. To me, this is just another example of how we live up to the value: Be a Team.

This value is one that I see playing out in our work and in our interactions at TEN7 every day. I have never been a part of a team that is so focused on community and the idea that, by working together we can be so much more than the sum of our parts. This value is the backbone of how we operate and how we deliver work that really matters.

It’s interesting that Be a Team is so ingrained in our culture considering we are a fully distributed company. It says a lot that, in my short time at TEN7, I already feel more connected and accepted by this team than I have at other jobs where we have worked together, often in close quarters! Achieving this level of teamwork isn’t an accident. It’s the result of very intentional work by our leaders, and authentic buy-in from everyone across the company.

We do all sorts of things to bridge the virtual divide and come together, such as:

  • Monthly “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) events to take a deep dive and learn more about our teammates.
  • Weekly “virtual coworking” times, where we can casually gather on Zoom and get our work done together.
  • Dedicated social channels in Slack, focusing on music, movies, food, etc.
  • Quarterly food events (giving me an outlet for my culinary passion!) including a “Salt Tasting” session, and a “Heart Healthy Cook-Along.” 
  • We even started a team cookbook called, Cook Things That Matter, in Notion!

We are encouraged to submit creative ideas for engagement. For TEN7’s 15th anniversary, I worked with our Director of Operations, Dani Adelman, to come up with an in-home virtual scavenger hunt with a TEN7 theme. We’re always doing something new and stupid and fun. It’s great. In a way, I think when teams work together physically they often take a lot for granted and maybe don’t do the work that is required to Be a Team. At TEN7, we need to make that magic ourselves. We get to know each other. We share. We post pictures of our pets. We care.

While this value is extremely important to our internal culture, I know our clients also appreciate that we are a team. You don’t want to work with a company that doesn’t have their act together, that doesn’t know how to interact and work efficiently. The priority we place on Be a Team translates to a more cohesive, organized unit for clients. 

Finally, Be a Team extends beyond our interactions with each other. It also plays out in our recognition of the important role we each play in success. 

For example, last year we completed a re-building of our TEN7 website. There are so many people who participated in the project and we acknowledge that in our code repository. There’s a line where our CEO, Ivan, thanks everyone who contributed and it’s great. It instills pride in our team, and gratitude for all the different ways people played a part.

If we really want to Make Things That Matter, we can’t do it alone. Be a Team is the value that brings us together, unites our efforts, and builds off of our strengths. This value makes TEN7 a great place to work, and allows us to make a real difference in the world.

Other TEN7 Voices on Be a Team:

“Be a Team means leaning on each other to work toward a common goal. I think the way our team collaborates with each other is such a beautiful thing to witness. But I also see it all the time in the way that we interact with our clients. They're included in sprint planning meetings and kept in the loop on so many things where I haven't seen other companies give clients that much transparency. We make sure they really are a part of our team each step of the way.”

— Nora Allen, Digital Project Manager

“No one person should ever be expected to be perfect at everything, or to be capable of doing everything. Being a team means that we can lean on each other when we need to. We respect people's expertise and utilize each others’ talents to get the best results together. 

We always have each other's backs and those are not just empty words. I see it in action all the time.”

— Kelly Auxier, Digital Project Manager