Startup Stereo Episode #02 – Work and Family Under One Roof: How to Best Manage Working From Home – Tips & Tricks From Anna Yona

Written by German Accelerator

Our guest in German Accelerator’s Startup Stereo Episode #02 is Anna Yona, Co-Founder of Wildling, a company producing minimal shoes for children and adults that feel like walking barefoot.

What started as a good way to balance both work and family life with 3 kids, has resulted in Wildling being set up as a remote company that now has more than 130 employees, most of which are working from home. Therefore, Anna is the perfect guest to talk about recommendations for working from home!

In our conversation, we talk about the importance of a virtual coffee kitchen, daily routines, fostering trust in a remote company through bi-monthly live meetings in non-corona times, and Wildling’s creative plan B in case of total lockdown. To give you a teaser: it involves the decentralized storage of 20,000 pairs of shoes in employees’ garages!

As we did this interview from home to home, you might hear kids in the background, but we imagine that this is something we’ve all come to know during the recent times: that work and family life have moved just a little bit closer.

We talk about:

  • The beginnings of a remote company
  • The importance of in-person meetings to define a vision, values, and OKRs
  • How trust is established working remotely and how essential it is to keep a good company culture
  • Practical suggestions on the tools that help everyone at Wildling stay aligned whilst working remotely such as Asana, Slack and the Google suite
  • Knowledge exchanges amongst colleagues
  • The rule to ask twice before you are allowed to get upset as it’s easy sometimes in virtual communication to misunderstand something
  • How open communication via Slack with its transparency can be quite inclusive
  • How the coronavirus impacted her work
  • Anna’s best practices for working remotely
  • How it’s like to run a family business working with her husband and how they have very different roles in the company
  • How it’s sometimes also difficult for Anna to disconnect from work
  • Milestones of moving from a product focus to building up a relationship with their customers to building up and nurturing a team
  • The vision of moving from making shoes to becoming a more sustainable company in a fair and innovative way
  • What working might look like 10 years from now and how there might be more decentralized company structures
  • Which advice Anna would give to her younger self and her personal motto “Where there is a will, there is a way”

About German Accelerator’s Startup Stereo:

German Accelerator’s “Startup Stereo” is a podcast with and for founders, innovators, and change-makers. Plug into the stories, experiences, and best practices around startups, expansion, leadership, new work, company culture, and more. Stay tuned for more episodes in the near future!

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