The communication that keeps us afloat

Culture Apr 30, 2021

Open and honest communication is the strongest foundation one can ever have. As an individual or as a company that thrives on being a collective one can simply not have enough of the right kind of communication.

Based out of our India HQ, as we struggle through the largest onslaught of the Covid 19 attack we have seen to date, our viewpoint on everything we knew of as it was has changed even further. However, what hasn't changed is the kind of team, collective and company we want to be.

We have always been a space that gives voice to every individual to express their ideas, put forth opinions.

A place that rewards failure and success alike because that's how we grow: by owning our deeds and by learning from our mistakes. An environment like this creates trust, transparency and team spirit amongst each of us, pushing everyone towards achieving more.

And today, more than ever before this is the space all of us need. In light of this, here are a set ways and our own little additions, adopting which, we are keeping our culture of open and honest communication intact when it is tough for every individual to do so.

All hands on deck.

Townhall, all hands, chai pe charcha- there are many names to it. Here, the whole tribe comes together on the same screen for company updates, announcements, work anniversaries, celebrations and welcoming newbies.

Putting everything out in the open makes each of us feel included, safe and secure. It gives us a sense of belonging and motivates us to be a part of something bigger.

And finally, a group photograph before we sign off.

When you ask your teammates to pose for the picture but they surprise you with no expressions altogether

Creating shared experiences.

Bringing culture to life is about those small things your folks do or say. And it is unique to every organisation. Slack and Google meet have become our new virtual social hubs where culture comes to life.

Needle's Slack has multiple channels such as-

#random- It is literally for anything random like a place for pictures of our people's weird faces, candid moments, favourite songs or just random funny memes or gifs.

#openair- It is a place for shoutouts to our people who have gone that extra mile, announcing any major project breakthroughs or announcing new project deals or achievements that cannot wait until town halls.

#knowledgesharing- Here, we share our learnings gained over different projects, which we think will help others in the team.

Brainstorming tête-à-tête leaves you with the best ideas.

Rupam (the person in charge of product management) keeps saying that he gets a lot of inspiration on innovation from random conversations. I myself feel that random feel-good conversations leave me inspired with many marketing, social media engagement, and blog ideas.

A few weeks back, one of our teammates' shared the below image on our primary communication channel, Slack. And we got into talking about how cool it will be to have an app or tool that could sense any paranormal activity in the surrounding (Bing! Right there we got a fantastic idea that we plan to work on soon. And no, it has nothing to do with anything paranormal :p)


Making feedback a two-way dialogue.

As much important, it is for people to get feedback on their strengths and areas of improvement, it is equally crucial for the company/ leadership to understand if they're keeping their people from the ultimate sense of belonging.

The more an organisation fosters open and transparent communication, the stronger will be its culture.

And to that end, we've recently introduced powwow to our rulebook.

What is a powwow?

Powwows are candid focus group discussions to understand various perspectives on a common topic. It's usually casual brainstorming to help us get more incite on a topic.

As part of our first powwow this week, we had an amazing heart-to-heart conversation on culture.

How did it help us?

  • Understand how people feel about the company's culture.
  • See if all the cross-functional teams are culturally aligned.
  • Identify any gaps.
  • Ensure if the culture of effective communication is in check.

That's all for now, folks. It's a ciao from us. Let us know what are your unique transparent communication habits?

Manisha Dash

On a mission to help build a meaningful world for the people.