Since the pandemic began you would have read several articles on how our personal and work lives have changed and adapted as we’ve moved online. Instead of face-to-face interaction we have been accustomed to using collaboration tools such as Zoom, Slack and WebEx.
Fnality has become a remote-first Company, embracing an entirely virtual way of working. It also means that last week I had the bizarre experience of sitting in the WeWork office and hearing two people in the same room address each other on a call.
Upon joining Fnality three weeks ago as an intern, I was immediately struck by the welcoming nature of the entire Company. Fnality’s structure demonstrates something I have increasingly come to appreciate about human nature: that empathy transcends the need to physically see someone to be able to form a relationship with them. On a wider level it is probably why we care about those in crisis on the other side of the world, but company-wide, it means a healthy work atmosphere is fostered amongst employees, many of whom haven’t seen each other for a year or have even never met.
My own experience in joining Fnality was made so comfortable by a warm reception. Introductions with each person in my team gave me an understanding of the Fnality set-up and dynamic. I especially enjoyed meeting with the CEO, Rhom, on my second day who made me feel so welcome. But beyond this, I have already seen the support system garnered by a mutual respect between everyone. The kudos Slack group chat demonstrates as much and allows people to feel their efforts are recognised. Daily stand-ups are held by teams, which not only work effectively and efficiently together, but support each other and seem to genuinely care. The few minutes at the beginning of a call before everyone joins gives the opportunity for small talk, and distinctions on Slack for group chats exclusively for business and those which are more light-hearted (from dogs to sports) allow people to learn more about each other.
Truly it combats the old-fashioned narrative that work cannot also be enjoyable and certainly for me, it was a surprise to find this in the finance industry. Human relationships aren’t something we seek out only because we want to, but because we need to. This allows us to integrate fully and the consequential sense of belonging generates a genuine care for the company’s success, and for the people within it. From my perspective so far, Fnality is somewhere which works well, and works happily.
This virtual working world offers us the opportunity to reflect on how remarkable humans really are in our capacity to connect and how boundaries are very much surmountable even through a screen, so take a moment to congratulate yourselves.