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The year 2020 is challenging our beliefs on what work means in so many ways.

Essential workers are putting their health — and lives — at risk to keep the world going. Meanwhile, it’s hard for non-essential workers to feel their work matters and believe that their work is still important amongst everything that’s happening around them.

For years, people have been chasing productivity at work. Getting more done. Checking things off their to-do lists. But that’s changing. I think that the future of work is much more about the impact that each of us will have on our customers and their missions, than it is the productivity that we have been so desperately seeking over the years. …


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Like many companies across the world, we’ve had to transition Front to fully remote work in just a few days. If you’ve read anything from me before, you know I care a lot about people being happy at work, and now more than ever, I’m making it a priority. The least a company can do in these times of high uncertainty is to find ways to cheer up employees, help them weather this storm, and make sure they know they’re valued.

Our HR team has risen up to the challenge, and done a wonderful job translating our in-office culture into a remote culture. Here are some of the things we’ve implemented in the past 2 weeks. There will be more to come, and I’ll share all of them. In the meantime I hope these can be an additional source of inspiration to all of you. …


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Source: Front

Once is a fluke, twice is a coincidence, three times is a trend… I’m once again making public the deck I used to raise our latest round of funding!

Based on the feedback I’m getting from readers, this is easily one of the highest-leverage activities for me: it takes about an hour to put together, and then hundreds of thousands of people can see it and use it in their own entrepreneurial journey. The internet is truly a beautiful thing!

The process

Why did we raise money now? The framework I used for our Series A was just as helpful today as it was 4 years ago. …


It’s official: we’ve raised $59 million in our Series C funding round!

I want to take a moment to thank our customers for their partnership and feedback, our team for their tireless dedication to building Front, and our investors for their support — I know we wouldn’t be here without you all. We’ll use this new money to continue building the best product, improve its distribution, and hire more people to join us on our journey. (We’ve just opened an office in Phoenix and we’re hiring!)

The most interesting part about this funding is that it is led by a group of individual investors, as opposed to a traditional venture fund, which is an uncommon feat for a round of this size. They’re some of the biggest leaders in technology: Atlassian co-CEO and co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes; Atlassian President Jay Simons; Okta executive vice chairman, COO and co-founder Frederic Kerrest; Qualtrics co-founder and CEO Ryan Smith and Qualtrics co-founder and CTO Jared Smith; and Zoom CEO Eric Yuan. …


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Source: Front

I launched Front because I wanted more people to be happier at work. I obsess over it at Front and have shared some thoughts on how to achieve this. However, there’s just so much I know! It’s my first company after all 😊 So a few months ago I decided to interview people who also obsess over it.

Today, I’m thrilled to announce the launch of a series of interviews. The first one is with Alexis Ohanian, and here is what I learned from the conversation.

Don’t wait until something terrible happens to prioritize mental health.

Both Alexis and I had earth-shattering moments while leading our companies when we realized we needed to slow down. For Alexis, it was when his mother got sick. …


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Source: Front

Every quarter, I build a presentation about our business, not for investors or customers, but for my employees. It’s a ton of work. In sharing this practice with others, I’ve found it’s rather unique. I strongly believe this is some of my most well-spent time so I’m sharing how and why I do it.

The presentation is called Last Quarter at Front (LQAF). I’ve been holding it for 2 years — and for 2 years before that, I actually held it monthly, called Last Month at Front. Here are the slides from LQAF in Q1 and Q2.

Last Quarter at Front, Q1…


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Source: Front

Last year, I challenged myself and those around me to completely disable notifications on our mobile devices. It was an effort to become more present and focused, and it was successful: what began as a source of anxiety and constant distraction became an opportunity for productivity. I suddenly found myself able to get so much more done, in less time.

And removing notifications was just the first step in my quest to be more present. I’ve since found that limiting my overall mobile usage has led to some seriously positive results. Inspired by my friend Justin Kan, I switched my phone to greyscale mode and deleted nearly all my apps. Now, I am no longer tethered to my phone. When I want to get some work done, I have to sit down at my computer to do it. When I’m out to dinner with my husband, I’m engaged in our conversation and have lost the constant urge to check what’s going on in the rest of the world. …


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Credit to https://www.radicalcandor.com/our-approach/

I am a huge fan of Kim Scott and believe that her radical candor philosophy is the most powerful tool to 1. create a great place to work, 2. prevent negativity, 3. prevent politics. This positivity leads to higher employee engagement.

In case you’re not familiar, radical candor is a framework for giving and receiving feedback that is rooted in caring personally about your colleagues while challenging them directly. If you are being radically candid, you won’t gossip behind people’s backs, you won’t brush issues off, and you won’t come off as a jerk. You will have those difficult conversations with your colleagues because you truly want them to learn, grow, and be better at their jobs. …


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Photo by Manasvita S on Unsplash

During my gap year, I took an internship in corporate finance at one of the biggest French companies. I didn’t care much about the work we were doing there, but I was content to work with great people, I had a decent paycheck, and plenty of time to enjoy Paris with my friends after work. I was happy, but I had no drive to do my best work, let alone stay with the company for the long haul.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, in early 2017, my co-founder was diagnosed with cancer. Where we previously shared the responsibility of Front’s future, I now needed to fill his shoes, be a strong leader for the team, and make Front successful — if not for myself and the team, then for him. I was more driven than ever, and I understood how critical my work was to the company’s future. I was extremely anxious, working an unhealthy amount of hours to balance his absence, and definitely not happy. My work had more meaning than ever before, but I wasn’t in the right state of mind to truly deliver the great work I was driven to do. …


A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of chatting for the second time with Harry Stebbings over at The Twenty Minute VC — and the episode is now live! I’ve been talking and writing a lot lately about discipline — and why I’d choose it over a grand vision any day of the week — but Harry does a great job of grilling me on what I mean by that and the simple habits founders can implement to be more disciplined.

Here are some of my favorite topics we cover:

  • How to be consistent and transparent when reporting progress toward…

About

Mathilde Collin

LEGO builder. Co-founder & CEO @ Front (frontapp.com)

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