The Telesign Philharmonic: Working Together as One to Make Beautiful Music

Telesign’s shared goals and global initiatives break down silos, ensuring every team member — across multiple functions, cultures and locations — is reading from the same sheet music and contributing to the company’s mission.

Written by Brigid Hogan
Published on May. 20, 2024
The Telesign Philharmonic: Working Together as One to Make Beautiful Music
Photo: Telesign
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When an orchestra starts a new season of performance, each musician reviews their new set of sheet music. The woodwinds, brass, strings and percussion sections then begin the practice of playing their parts, watching the conductor, following the lead of their section’s principal player and pacing themselves as they play their instruments. And together, the beautiful sounds of true art emerge.

“Coming together for our global Revenue Kickoff was just like that,” said Telesign Chief Marketing Officer and head of Go-to-Market Strategy Kristi Melani, speaking of a recent annual event the fraud protection company held in Texas. “Once we were all reading from the same sheet of music, marching to the same beat of the drum, it made for beautiful music — with the highest satisfaction scores to date. It made a team of different functions, cultures and locations truly unstoppable.”

While reaching desired business outcomes is the goal, Melani knows that keeping the team aligned in harmony is what gets them there.

“By having shared goals, we can look at them together as a team,” she said. “There will be moments in time where certain groups do need some hand holding or prodding along, and that’s where those shared goals come into play. Think about the shared objectives, monitor them and support one another when things might slip here and there.”

 

“There will be moments in time where certain groups do need some hand holding or prodding along, and that’s where shared goals come into play.”

 

As companies scale, maintaining cross-functional collaboration becomes increasingly challenging, but at Telesign, a clear charter helps define the road ahead and keeps collaboration a leadership imperative across the organization.

“A charter is just a piece of paper if you don’t continuously revisit it,” Melani noted. “I try to lead by example and forge bonds to model what that charter looks like in action. If I see a gap in communication, I call it out but try very hard not to blame a single group. We all at some point will forget to share information with someone who needs to know, but instead of dwelling on it, we want to take the info when we do get it and focus on how we are going to collaborate to get the job done.”

Sales Enablement Director Michelle Greener Goodman agreed that leveraging that shared vision ensures that every employee understands their contribution to the broader company goals.

“I appreciate when our leaders call out what is going well and what isn’t going well,” she said. “It helps us understand where we are in the business and where we need to put more effort and time to get us there collectively.”

 

Telesign team members sit together at a conference table during the company’s recent Revenue Kickoff event, talking and smiling.
Telesign

 

 

Integrating new customer-facing team members into this shared vision begins with an “around-the-world tour” when they first join Telesign, a process that allows them to speak to colleagues both from within their own department and across the company.

“This practice establishes a principle that we collaborate with one another and don’t work in silos,” Greener Goodman explained.

Another way the Telesign team prevents silos is through global, cross-departmental learning series meetings — like its annual Revenue Kickoff — that bring together teammates from the go-to-market and product teams.

“We have learning series meetings, which is an awesome way to not only inform and educate everyone on new products and services, but also creates an open dialogue for questions, insights and ideas from across the company,” Principal Customer Success Manager Kristy LaVelle said. “Now that our offices have expanded into new markets across the globe, this forum allows us to learn the challenges and trends from a different perspective.”

Greener Goodman agreed that by recognizing and embracing these differences, Telesign ensures that its collaborative efforts are inclusive and effective.

“We are a global company, and it’s important that when we create initiatives, we need to keep in mind that different types of business and regions will have different pain points and we will need to tailor their product experience accordingly,” she said. “How we sell in China is not the same as how we sell in Colombia, so creating scalable programs while considering different working styles has been a fun and interesting challenge.”

 

“How we sell in China is not the same as how we sell in Colombia, so creating scalable programs while considering different working styles has been a fun and interesting challenge.”

 

Similarly, LaVelle’s customer success team works closely across Telesign’s specialist departments to support clients, so these cross-collaborative opportunities provide an opportunity to dig in deeper to understand how they can partner effectively with customers.

“When working with others, being inquisitive and asking questions to learn something new will always be a benefit down the road,” she said.

 

Telesign teammates sit next to each other at a table at the company’s 2024 Revenue Kickoff event, looking at laptops together and smiling. 
Telesign

 

LaVelle also recognizes the importance of building a shared understanding of how to approach working together in order to find shared success.

“Working on any project with teammates requires a foundation of open communication, trust, respect and to make sure everyone feels heard when providing their input,” she said. “While working together with account directors to support clients, constant communication is extremely important as we want to make sure we are always on the same page and presenting the same message.”

On her team, keeping close alignment across all customer interactions has more than cultural benefits. Clarity around new products and services or shared knowledge about a client pain point can also lead to new business opportunities as well.

“Having each other’s backs, whether supporting internally or externally, helps build a strong team unit,” she said.

Melani agrees that finding unity is at the heart of Telesign’s way of doing business. Even though moving to a hybrid work environment has changed the way many team members connect, those personal relationships are crucial to working together effectively.

“When we work in isolation, we forget to look up,” she said. “I continuously ask my reports if they have spoken to their peers — to find out what someone from a different group thinks or what challenges are in their way that communication might be able to bridge. We need to pause, talk with others and be open to input, both as leaders and on our teams.”

 

“We need to pause, talk with others and be open to input, both as leaders and on our teams.”

 

Whether Telesign encounters an off-key instrument or a section playing to a different beat, Melani is confident the team is prepared to realign and harmonize.

“We all work for the same company,” she said, “and it’s my job as a leader to steer the combined team in the right direction.”

 

 

Responses have been edited for length and clarity. Images provided by Telesign.

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