When Nílber Remón logs on to work each day from their home in Brooklyn, they aren't expecting an immediate message from their manager or mentor — they’re each working time zones away in Hawaii and Slovenia, respectively.
And while Courtney Reed knows some of her colleagues thrive working in the buzz of a coffee shop or coworking space, she prefers to sit down at the desk in her home office, with a restorative view out of a large window.
For both Remón, Reed and their colleagues at Adswerve, a virtual-first approach offers more than flexibility — it also helps support a diverse, distributed team by accommodating talent based on geography or work environment.
At Adswerve, “three Cs” form the foundation for strong culture and thriving teams — connectivity, community and creativity.
“The three Cs are our guiding light to ensure we feel connected no matter our location, role or team, rally around shared interests and spend time together, and solve problems creatively and innovatively,” said CEO Roger Berdusco.
Investing in a virtual-first environment is crucial to one of Berdusco’s central priorities: making Adswerve a place for every team member to thrive.
“We value our people above all else, so we strive to ensure that all our team members feel welcome, comfortable, excited and proud to be here. The remote work culture is constantly evolving, and my goal is to ensure that Adswerve continues protecting its valued culture through changing workplace trends,” he said. “We seek to bring the best possible people onto our team who will enhance culture, help us live up to our DEI values and meet our high capability standards.”
“My goal is to ensure that Adswerve continues protecting its valued culture through changing workplace trends.”
For Remón, joining Adswerve as a data engineer was their first foray into virtual work — one that quickly revealed the value of Adswerve’s commitment to connectivity, community and creativity.
“Working from home has provided flexibility around my schedule and facilitated greater autonomy over my time, including focused time in flow when developing software engineering solutions,” they said. “Much of our distributed work has been facilitated by the successful implementation of asynchronous work and communication.”
WHAT ADSWERVE DOES
As a digital media and data consultancy, Adswerve serves as a partner to marketing and tech leaders to help them connect with customers and maximize the value of their marketing technology investments. Adswerve is a Google Marketing Platform partner and an Adobe Gold Solutions Provider.
Staying connected in a distributed environment can be challenging, but keeping connectivity at the heart of company culture and ways of working allows Adswerve’s team to retain a strong sense of belonging.
In her role as DEI manager, Reed is focused on finding ways to foster that sense of belonging by helping employees build strong ties and thrive personally and professionally while part of the Adswerve team.
“One of the initiatives I am most looking forward to is the launch of our employee resource groups,” she said. “The ERG program will continue to foster an inclusive culture and allow our team to build community across shared identities and interests. When employees feel they belong, they are more engaged, motivated and better equipped to bring their best selves to work everyday.”
Another project sparking connection at Adswerve is the Spark Initiative, which, according to Berdusco, “provides avenues for our team members to bring new ideas forward for consideration and exploration.” Within the initiative, Berdusco hosts listening sessions to hear from employees, which allows him to hear personally and directly from the Adswerve team.
“We want to empower every employee to seek and voice new ideas — regardless of role, title, or any other label,” he said. “We encourage our team members to listen to each other without judgment and with respect, curiosity, open minds and a willingness to support and advocate for one another.”
Within the regular cadence of life at Adswerve, opportunities to meet and collaborate with team members abound: monthly all-hands and regular in-person and virtual events that include summits, face-to-face department meetings, volunteer opportunities and regional social meetups.
“Adswerve really values opportunities for our team to come together, which leads to enhanced productivity for our team, but we know these connection points are more than just a time to work and achieve our business goals. They allow us to see and feel our company culture come to life,” Reed said.
Beyond the opportunities to come together to build community, Adswerve’s virtual-first approach allows a more diverse and inclusive community to flourish at the company.
“A virtual-first approach allows us to reduce bias in our hiring process, significantly increase our talent pool and create more inclusive meeting structures with a number of accessibility features to support members of our team with disabilities. It also allows us to make the majority of our training and development opportunities accessible to our entire team at their own pace,” Reed noted.
While working virtually offers Remón the opportunity to find their flow state on their own, Adswerve also creates space for the team to come together in person and build the deep relationships that help support creative collaboration.
“In-person engagements build upon the relationships we’ve developed at a distance and facilitate an unstructured space for conversations, creative outlets and thoughtful interactions. These engagements range from the formal organizational summits to all of the informal, social gatherings in between which foster connections outside the traditional work sphere,” they said.
“In-person engagements build upon the relationships we’ve developed at a distance and facilitate an unstructured space for conversations, creative outlets and thoughtful interactions.”
According to Remón, Adswerve’s culture serves to catalyze an atmosphere of diverse ideas in which everyone is encouraged to pursue new interests and explore the edges of their abilities.
“Adswerve actively and intentionally cultivates an engaging learning environment and the space to pursue professional development paths without the enforced siloed specialization endemic to larger-scaled organizations,” they said.
According to Reed, setting team members on that path to growth and success at Adswerve starts on day one, and every new hire starts their first day with the tools they need to be successful, a clear path ahead and a buddy to provide mentorship and support along the way.
“Adswerve is committed to the people who make our company what it is,” she said. “Your journey at Adswerve is not just about your role, it’s about being a part of a community that genuinely cares about all of who you are, your growth, well being and happiness while you’re here.”