Rethinking communication in the hybrid workplace

It’s time to zoom out

2 min readMar 2, 2021

“I banned video meetings.”

“Say that again?” I asked the CMO of a successful, hyper-growth startup as we chatted about remote work.

“I had to ban video meetings for my 30-person team,” he said. “They completely destroyed my team’s creativity and morale. We just talk on the phone now. We’re looking for a solution, but at least the team is productive again — for now.”

I wanted to change his mind. Instead, I decided to listen. And I realized I didn’t have to explain our vision at all.

Why? Because he’s part of a generation of leaders that actually recognizes that our old world communication products aren’t designed for improving creative processes. In fact, it’s the opposite — they hurt creativity and demoralize makers.

Every organization working remotely in 2021 needs to ask themselves the same question: Can our best minds still create and innovate and build? Are they focused and energized? Or are they constantly disrupted?

To “zoom out” doesn’t mean we stop doing meetings. But it does mean we need to completely rethink presence across multiple use cases to adopt truly modern processes — and a new communication layer for the era of multi-player creativity. Products like Figma, Miro, and Notion have taken off because they enable distributed, asynchronous and synchronous multi-player input. This process of building together not only amplifies creativity and improves morale, it reduces business risk by establishing continuous innovation and transforming processes to become more agile.

Teams using Around today are leading this remote revolution. Whether it’s designers conducting design sessions, product and engineering teams syncing on the upcoming roadmap, or creatives brainstorming on commercial scripts, they’re using Around as a communication layer to augment and amplify creative output, all while reducing fatigue. They’ve chosen to zoom out because they know the importance of having a modern remote stack. And with Around’s EchoTerminator audio technology that replaces traditional conference room hardware, organizations are truly ready for the “hybrid remote” future in a post-pandemic world.

With $10M in Series A funding from Wing, Forerunner Ventures, and Slack Fund (bringing our total funding to $15.2M), Around is defining a new category of communication in one of the most important movements on the internet for the 2020–2030 era — designed from the ground up for the new remote stack to empower makers. Over the course of the next decade, there will be millions of people working together who have never met in person — and yet, still create magic. ✨

— Dominik Zane, CEO

Interested in trying out Around for your team? You can sign up here, or see what our users are saying here.

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