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3 Takeaways From Formant’s 2022 Summer Summit

On August 2nd, the Formant team took off to Carmel Valley, CA to meet for four days for Formant's 2022 Summer Summit. For many, this was the first time they’ve ever met colleagues offline.  

But we weren’t only there to enjoy the beautiful weather. For Formanteers, this was the chance to share ideas across departments, have face-to-face discussions regarding culture, and to lay the groundwork for future Formanteers. Among the many insightful conversations and brainstorm sessions our team had, there were a few standout takeaways we walked away with we’d like to share with you. 

 

Bringing remote to the real world is invaluable 

As a fully remote company, we’re big proponents of working from anywhere- but we also can’t ignore the value of interacting with one another outside of a Zoom screen. After interacting digitally since their start date, saying hello in a real setting was a breath of fresh air, and we didn’t spare a second of opportunity to relish in it. 

From a morning workshop on how to create strong remote connections (led by Jamie Shaw, Founding Partner at Bay Area Studio LMNL), to late-night fireside chats, it became clear that even in a remote world, nothing beats the opportunity for a face-to-face conversation. Outside of team discussions and some late-night talks on the future of robotics, we enjoyed getting to know each other in a few activities including a beautiful 2-mile hike and archery tournament. 

 

Preventing silos is a priority 

It’s not every day that engineers at a fully remote company can sit down with salespeople to have a discussion- but our summit was the perfect time to make it happen. One of the biggest struggles that can develop within a remote company is department silos. At Formant, our departments chat regularly, but seizing the chance for real-time collaboration was a large focus.

We ensured every opinion was heard, which included everything from cross-department huddles to open-invite conversations where any idea was welcome to be pitched. One of our favorites was the content brainstorm, which allowed employees typically far removed from writing content to voice their ideas in an open forum. If you follow our blog regularly, you’ll probably see some interesting topics come up in the next couple of months.

 

We need to remember the human in robotics

The robots and the platform we build to support them often get all the attention, but we have to be sure we never forget the humans behind them. By putting people first, we can ensure we build a strong culture aligned on values we can all aspire to, and solve the right issues that humans face in robotics, every day. Through taking care of one another, showing empathy in all daily interactions, and remembering the face behind the robot (in our company, in our customers, and in the world at large), we can aspire to work together toward creating something great while ensuring no human is left behind. 

Our Formanteers had an amazing time meeting one another and taking in the views of Carmel Valley together. We look forward to the future, feeling refreshed after a week spent together, and to our future summits as continue to learn from each other! 

 

Check out some of our favorite photos taken of the team at Formant's 2022 Summer Summit. 

 

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