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Image CC BY 2.0 by Sergio Boscaino

At Loup we take great pride in our work, but also in how we work. Part of this ethos is working open and sharing what we do, who we take inspiration from, and where we still struggle. In the past we have written about our program management methods and how we use tools like Airtable.

In all of the posts working remotely and in distributed teams is a common theme. Remote work can sound easy. It’s just having conversations via video instead of in-person, right? Not quite. For a team to work full-time from different locations, there’s a lot more…


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Map from the US Central Intelligence Agency via Wikipedia

Switching to full-time remote work can be a tough transition and many people struggle to set work-life boundaries. For a team to thrive, it’s important to respect each others’ working hours as nothing burns people out faster than frequent calls interrupting family or personal time. Time zone challenges are an ongoing reality, so here are a few best practices:

  • Own your calendar. Put calendar blocks in the early morning and late evening (or whenever your blackout times are) so people aren’t tempted to schedule you into calls.
  • Record calls. If a contributor in a tough-to-schedule time zone needs to be…


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We’ve logged thousands of hours on video conference calls — it’s how we stay connected as a team, work together on projects, and minimize the carbon cost of unnecessary travel . We can report that parody videos about exasperating calls are painfully accurate. Background noise, poor connectivity, and audio gremlins are extremely disruptive — especially for a team just learning to work remotely. If you and your team are transitioning to full-time distributed work, here are some basics:

  • Get proper equipment: a webcam that points at your face; headphones so you can hear; a microphone so people can hear you…


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Image by www.ccPixs.com

Loup is a fully distributed team working across North America. We’re a small shop, but we dedicate a sizeable portion of our monthly operating costs to software that allows us to work seamlessly from afar. Yes, there are free (or cheaper) alternatives to some of the tools we use, but through trial — and certainly through error — we’ve come to realize that dependable software is critical to our success as a distributed team. Here is the minimum set of tools we use and recommend:

  • A video conferencing tool. We prefer Zoom, which allows for plenaries and breakout rooms, as…


2019 was a year of development for StoryEngine, Loup’s narrative-based methodology that powers decision-making and connects organizations with the people they serve. We were proud to share stories that exemplified the passion, innovation, and ingenuity of organizations like eCampus Ontario, HiveNYC, and Hispanics in Philanthropy.

We’re also very excited to share that we prototyped and launched Your StoryEngine our customized approach dedicated to helping professionals in flux define their purpose and advance their career (whether they’re feeling stuck, returning from family leave, or just tired of cookie-cutter professional development seminars). …


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Announcing Grant for the Web — a $100M fund to boost open, fair, and inclusive standards and innovation in web monetization

The Loup team is super excited to finally announce what we’ve been working on for the past few months: Grant for the Web.

We’re passionate about this work because, as entrepreneurs, creatives, and storytellers ourselves, we understand how broken the current system is. Grant for the Web opens up exciting possibilities for creators and publishers to get paid for their work without relying on creepy advertising and annoying paywalls — not to mention the flagrant abuse of personal data…


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Photo by Nighat CC BY

Nighat Dad is the Executive Director of Digital Rights Foundation. She is a TED Global Fellow for 2017, has been listed as TIME’s Next Generation Leader, and is the recipient of Atlantic Council Freedom Award, and Human Rights Tulip Award.

These are highlights of an interview conducted as part of the Humans of the Internet space at MozFest 2017. Read the full interview and listen to others at the Humans of the Internet playlist.

I am from Pakistan. I am a founder of a nonprofit organization called the Digital Rights Foundation. We work around issues related to internet freedom, the…


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Joana Varon is the Founding Directress at Coding Rights. This story is built from a StoryEngine interview between Joana and Brett Gaylor, at the Refiguring the Future event in Chicago, May 2018. Read the full article.

I always envisioned myself as a researcher and activist, not as a media person. After someone referred to our work as media and I asked Dani, my program officer at Open Society about that, she said, “You’re doing media stuff.” I responded, “Yes, but it’s to translate research findings into advocacy because research outcomes normally tend to be presented in a boring and gray…


Planning a project retro for distributed teams

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Photo by Charles 🇵🇭 on Unsplash

Retrospectives are a tool to identify and reflect on significant moments — both positive and negative — during the course of a project. Thinking back through these moments can help teams celebrate accomplishments and identify challenges, contributing to valuable overall learning.

Regularly-scheduled team retros are an important part of Loup’s approach to distributed teamwork. Project retros — the focus of this guide — are a bit different because they take a broader view and will likely include stakeholders that may not have participated in the day-to-day work on the project, but will nonetheless have important feedback to share.

Why retros matter

Retros are…

Loup Editorial Team

Loup is a human-centered design and innovation consultancy dedicated to helping organizations listen to and learn from the people they serve.

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