Hi guys, SKP here fresh off of 6,000 miles of flying around the US to see Team Orum! 

As a remote first company, we place an incredibly high value on seeing one another IRL and put a lot of thought into how we choose to come together in person. Why remote? This wasn’t a covid-era accident – we believe that being remote first allows us to build a multidimensional team composed of diverse backgrounds and skill sets. It’s tied to one of our values – Diversity of thought and Diversity of People.

Making Remote, Work

In the past week, we found ourselves sweating through the NYC heat in the East Village on perhaps the hottest day of 2022, digging some serious eats in San Francisco’s Chinatown (10/10 check out China Live), drinking homebrewed beer from one of our engineers in Denver, hiding from sudden torrential downpours in Chicago and vibing to the 4pm WeWork DJ in Washington, DC. We shared our favorite books and shows (see below for some of the hits) and we learned who eats vegan/GF/DF while sharing small plates galore.

We laughed together over crazy kid rearing stories (40% of Orum has young kids) and we swapped stories about where we grew up, immigrant families (mine, and many others) and where our best vacations have been. To say we deepened our connections as humans wouldn’t do justice to the powerful pull that was created by coming together, not to work, but to have fun.

“It’s no secret that we’re busy at Orum, which makes regional dinners particularly special. The decision to create time and space for in-person, intentional connection makes me feel valued and supported as part of a company that’s not only remote-first, but moreover uniquely people-first.” – Hannah, Product Manager

Where We Are

Consider this: working for a year or longer with someone who you have come to know as a work bestie on zoom, but never actually meeting in person because, well, this map says it all about why you might not have met someone yet (or ever!) at Orum. 

So, this is how the summer dinner series was born. Ashley leads our People Ops at Orum and this gem of a concept is all her – she spends countless hours thinking about engagement, belonging, and inclusion which are the key pillars of how we think about diversity itself at Orum. 

“These dinners are not only fun events, but an investment in deepening the culture and relationships at a remote-first company. Whether I was sitting next to a co-worker at WeWork, getting lost with a new friend on the way back to the hotel, or stuffing my face over a good meal, the regional dinners fostered strong connections that will only improve everyone’s trust and working relationships. I am never shy on slack, but it now somehow feels easier to ping my teammates.” – Ashley, People Ops

Remote, Not Distant

You’ll often hear us say – “the work is remote, but not distant”. We don’t claim to have perfected remote work but we believe that making a continuous investment in human connection will fuel our ability to grow as a team and still embrace remote wholeheartedly. 

“It was great to get out from behind the keyboard and put a height to the faces I talk to every day as well as meet people I haven’t had the chance to work with yet! The Denver summer dinner gave me a sense of comfortability finally meeting people I talk to often. The feeling when you are able to meet and actually share a few laughs is the best.” – Myra, Payment Ops

We learned that we are all avid readers, TV watchers, lovers of music and committed podcasters so if you need some content curation our top picks are below!

PS: We’re Hiring! 

Reading – Staff Engineer, Cloud Cuckoo Land, Humor Seriously, Beloved

Watching – The Bear (Hulu), The Staircase (HBO), Love Island UK Edition  

Listening – Smartless (Podcast), Drake – Honestly Nevermind, 20 Min VC (Podcast), NPR Up First (Podcast)