Life @ Thumbtack
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Life @ Thumbtack

Virtual First, Not Virtual Only: Introducing our Quarterly In-Person Events

By: Sophia Henriquez

More than twelve months ago we began our journey to design and unpack our stance on the Future of Work. We wrestled for months over who we wanted to be. And watched as companies quickly scrambled in this new world to identify themselves — hybrid, in-office, remote only? We eventually settled on a clear vision to create an effective, flexible, and equitable workplace — our stance: virtual first, not virtual only.

When we set out to create the pillars of our virtual-first model, we knew that in-person connection was going to be essential to build and sustain connections. We were committed! During an All Company meeting back in the spring of 2021, we pledged that our now fully-remote employees would have the opportunity to use new ‘library’ hubs as desired and get together in person quarterly. We welcomed new members to the team and after a long and challenging year tackling an array of matters — health and safety, virtual work norms, scalability, and more — we finally brought our in-person events vision fully to life in March 2022.

We safely hosted hundreds of US and Canadian employees across four different events. Team members flew in from across North America to gather in Napa Valley and Santa Cruz with one key goal in mind: connect. No work, no planning, no meetings.

We created programming centered around our goal of connection, which we brought to life through team icebreakers, interactive experiences, and celebrations with leaders. There was no shortage of activities — from hiking and meditation, bowling, salsa making, late night board games, wine tasting, silent disco parties, and so much more. We also used this time to bring to life a core part of our Employer Brand — our new Employee Value Proposition — through a creative pitch competition. And used the time to find better ways to collaborate together virtually, posing distinct challenges and coming together to find solutions.

In the end, we were thrilled to find that our hypothesis was right, in-person connection works. Our team told us this loud and clear in our latest survey — attendees reported a 34% increase to their sense of connection and an 18% increase to their sense of belonging at Thumbtack after attending events.

We are just getting started and are well on our way into planning for our next quarterly offsite, taking place early this summer, planning for Camp Thumbtack which will be happening this fall, and launching our new events model for our team in the Philippines.

We’re hiring inspired folks who want to embrace the virtual-first, not virtual-only way of working. Check out opportunities to join at www.thumbtack.com/careers

Sophia is a Program Manager, Future of Work and Employee Experience at Thumbtack.

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Thumbtack People Team

Thumbtack People Team

We spend our days empowering people from all walks of life to do their work with joy and purpose. Read more about the work we’re doing, and how we’re doing it!