HubSpot’s Global Week of Rest: 4 Ways We’re Solving for the Customer While Solving for Self-Care
By Rob Giglio, Chief Customer Officer at HubSpot
When HubSpot customers buy our software, we know that they are not only trusting the product, but the people who build, sell, and support the full HubSpot experience. We take incredible pride in delighting our customers and helping them grow better. But, in order to ensure our 6,400 global employees are able to support over 143,000 customers around the world, they need to be engaged, well-rested, and not burned out.
That’s why last year, HubSpot introduced a Global Week of Rest as part of our long-term plan to prevent and battle burnout. Our team members took a week-long company holiday to step away, rest, and recharge. While I wasn’t here for the inaugural week of rest, I continue to hear that the feedback and support from our customers and partners was overwhelming. In fact, they found our commitment to taking care of our people admirable with nearly 90% of customers responding positively, with some even pledging to implement a similar initiative at their own companies. Due to the positive employee feedback and the support of customers and partners, HubSpot decided to make Global Week of Rest annual, held during the week of July 4th each year.
As we gear up for our second-annual Global Week of Rest (my first as I just joined in March 2022), I’ve been reflecting on what it means to be a customer-first company and how to balance both solving for customer needs, and the needs of employees. Here are three ways I believe we’re able to take a collective week off of rest to solve for self-care, while keeping our customers top of mind:
Over-Communicating to Customers and Partners
The idea of moving an entire company offline can be jarring to those who depend on your availability and service. To make the transition a bit more manageable, empathy and overcommunication are key. In other words, set expectations early and often.
In early June, HubSpot customers received a notice letting them know we’d be operating with a reduced staff, what they could expect from our global support team, and where they could find advice and resources for non-urgent assistance. But, it doesn’t stop there. We make sure to send several reminders and bake the notice into our regular operating system of communicating to customers. For example, reps are encouraged to tailor communications based on the customer. For some, that’s bringing it up on their regular calls or adding a note in their email signature, and for some that’s reaching out to customers directly with self-service resources. This continuous, transparent communication gives people time to prepare, ask questions, and ultimately feel confident about running HubSpot independently during our week off.
Empowering Customers to Self-Service
Our Global Week of Rest applies to our people, not our product. One of the reasons why I joined HubSpot was the belief that we don’t just build software, we help build careers by connecting peers and partners in the community through the robust HubSpot Community. Filled with HubSpot enthusiasts, rich product-specific forums and groups to share and connect, there’s truly a sense of support and empowerment in the HubSpot Community.
Instead of taking work off for a week, followed by chaos upon return, we urge our customer-facing teams to be thoughtful and intentional about how they approach the Global Week of Rest with their customers to ensure they’re leveraging the week to their advantage. Setting key goals with customers to accomplish during the week, reminding them of the myriad of self-service resources we have available through the Knowledge Base, and HubSpot Academy, and encouraging our partners to help serve as a resource for customers, is part of our goal to empower companies to grow better.
Building a Skeleton Crew System for Urgent Requests
During our Global Week of Rest, our remarkable global support team takes a well-deserved break. But of course we wouldn’t be living up to our Customer Code if we didn’t have measures in place for answering critical and urgent queries. That’s why we have a group of HubSpotters who volunteered their time to work during the week, focused on monitoring requests and ensuring urgent issues are addressed. These folks don’t miss out on the Global Week of Rest, but rather choose a different week during the month of July or August to rest and recharge.
Equally as important as building a skeleton crew for urgent issues is communicating how and when customers should lean on the team. While they shouldn’t expect the same level of quick assistance our global support team works so hard to deliver, they can rely on the personable HubSpot customer service experience if they find themselves in an emergency situation.
Implementing Strong Cross-Team Collaboration
As you can imagine, as a global company, taking a week off requires every department and team to be on the same page. That’s why planning for our Global Week of Rest starts 5–6 months prior to the break. From operations to services to product, the entire company comes together to ensure our employees are truly able to unplug and our customers are able to grow better the same as any other week.
This is only possible by having a shared goal. For us, that’s to solve for the customer. As our Culture Code states, for every important decision we ask ourselves, what’s in it for our customers? Having this baked into our core operating system enables us to stay close to the planning details in order to best support our customers and community during a week of rest.
At HubSpot, we believe that the only way to create a company that’s truly remarkable is by creating a culture that solves for the customer. But, I believe that being customer-obsessed doesn’t need to come at the expense of employee burnout. While taking an entire week off as a global company involves a lot of moving pieces, the feedback from our employees on how it’s made a positive impact on their lives makes it worth it. We’re deeply appreciative of the support from our customers as we create space for them to rest, recharge, and come back ready to help millions of organizations grow better.