I Asked If I Could Visit Medium’s NYC Office. They Said ‘Uh, Ok’.
My name is Liz. I’m an active Medium user. I recently asked if I could stop by Medium’s New York City office to put faces to platform, and Medium said ‘sure, come on by’. So come by I did. And I couldn’t wait to share with all my fellow Medium users.
Meet Nippers. Nippers is the official Guard Dog of Medium’s New York City office space. Upon first meeting I was worried there might be something wrong with Nippers. He seemed a bit lethargic. But once I had a moment to sit down with him, I came to the conclusion that yes, he is lethargic. But it’s only because he’s inanimate.
I had the pleasure of meeting with Sophie Moura and Kate Lee during my visit. Sophie and Kate both do things. Small things. Large things. But mostly they do Medium things. We sat in a conference room where I faced a dry erase board with two near identical, though mirror opposite bulls eye sketches. Sophie and Kate assured me that within this rudimentary sketch lies the secret of Medium’s past, present and future successes.
Sophie and Kate then showed me to Medium’s kitchen, where you could feast hungrily on all of the apples your heart desired… so long as your heart did not desire any more than 6 Royal Gala apples (seriously, I Googled 94174).
But the kicker? The tea selection! As a tea drinker, I have come to expect some stale Lipton packets gathering dust between leaky ink cartridges and a tangle of outdated computer equipment. Had I known they had cold brewed tea, ON TAP, I would have taken them up on their initial beverage offer.
But I didn’t visit Medium to learn about their fruit and beverage offerings. I visited to learn about their people offerings. So allow me to share who I did and didn’t meet.
This handsome lad is Joe Purzycki. He is the Head of Partnerships at Medium. He is someone that I didn’t get to meet because he was on an important call in the beanbag room. But I promise, he loved getting his photo taken. Did he get the deal done? My fingers are crossed. But I’m also a bit perplexed, why would you sit on a metal chair in a beanbag room?
Meet Sarah. Sara is the NYC Office Manager. I was taken by how accurately she applied evenly sized evenly spaced dots of poster putty to the back of some new office signage. Her willingness to oblige my photo op request reminded me of that old adage “She who labels the Janitorial Closet will one day run the company.”
And last but most definitely not least, here is my new pal Sophie. I initially wanted a photo that included Kate and the employee that sat between the two of them, but Sophie explicitly said “No Liz, I want to be front and center in this photo, only me and nobody else”. So I said, ok, smile pretty. And smile pretty she did.
(Note: I just made that whole conversation up, I have terrible photography skills and was looking for someone to throw under the bus.)
As I was heading down in the padded elevator, I was thinking about my conversation with Sophie and Kate. We discussed how I’m a driven and passionate writer. But I’m a new writer. And I have little access. To complicate matters, I write about something that doesn’t easily fit many molds. I write about the intersection of disability and style. But through the medium of Medium, I finally have found a home for my ideas. And within this home, I feel supported, heard and accepted.
It’s not easy to put pen to paper. It’s even harder to share it. And nothing will prepare you for the panic and exhilaration you will feel when you realize total strangers are reading thoughts so intimate, they originated in the space between your ears. But if you have a point of view, if you have something to say, it is my hope that you will take a chance. Medium is not the office in these photos (or the other, bigger office in San Francisco). Medium is the person who is reading this post right now. It’s a safe space. Sort of like their padded elevator.
Thanks Medium. (Can I have some cold brewed tea next time?)
P.S. Check out my genius tag selection.
Update: Could Nipper be related to Nipper?