It’s been two weeks since we packed up our monitors and laptop docks to work from home at Exigo. I’m a child of the internet age and was already doing a fair amount of remote work while finishing my undergraduate degree, so I didn’t expect the shift to impact my work much.
Our transition to work from home has been remarkably smooth. Craig Beirdneau, head of Exigo People Operations, said, “The biggest problem we’ve had has been staying connected and having human interaction.”
Every morning our team has a 15-minute agile stand-up e-meeting in which each member of the team runs through their priorities for the day. We also log them in our Slack channel to keep each other accountable by the end of the day.
The morning video chats have done more for my morale than I ever expected. My predisposition for extroversion combined with the close proximity of my work-from-home desk to my comfortable bed has strained my motivation at times. But seeing my team’s faces not only brings me joy, but also reminds me that my team is still relying on me.
I remember a couple of weeks ago, our office internet was slowing to a crawl because our service provider was having system-wide problems. It disrupted our work for only a short time before our IT team boosted the speed. It's the nature of a tech company to be reliant on the internet, and that same reliance has turned into a strength during the last two weeks. Because we're a technology company, we have a unique ability to adapt to challenges like the COVID-19 quarantine. And many of our clients who thrive using our eCommerce direct-selling platform have adapted right along with us.
But not everyone is so lucky.
Small businesses around the world are suffering: stores closed, restaurants shifted to take-out only, and some “non-essential” services were halted. These and more signal economic challenges ahead. Two trillion dollars in government stimulus is coming, but nothing can undo the weeks of lost business that no one could have prepared for.
Earlier this week, Craid Beirdneau was troubled by the struggling businesses he saw around him and wondered what he could do to boost Exigo employees’ spirits remotely. “Almost all of our employees work in the office, and COVID-19 forcing us to work from home has impacted morale for some. Several employees have actually reported higher levels of morale while working from home, but we see the opposite with extroverted employees who miss the human connection they get in the office.”
Craig wondered what he could do to lend a hand to the community while working to support his employees in the midst of such an unprecedented change.
He thought about one of the popular features of our physical office: our fully stocked kitchen and refrigerator. Should he play Secret Santa and make Diet Coke deliveries from the six-foot safe distance?
That’s when he remembered one of his favorite local businesses, Zapplz. The American Fork, Utah-based homemade sweetshop was one of Craig’s go-to treat providers for Exigo in the past, so he decided to find out if they could supply a morale-boosting treat for employees working from home.
A business owner in distress answered Craig's call to Zapplz. Because of the virus, they had closed their store and lost all of their catering orders, leaving them with a huge excess of apples that wouldn’t keep for more than a few days.
Craig and Exigo CEO Rodger Smith thought about how they could help and decided to do something remarkable. Craig spent the next couple days volunteering his time to help Zapplz resolve their excess inventory problem. He diverted the usual Exigo office food budget to pay Zapplz and he called in his candy apple angels. With his team members Christi and Liv, they made home deliveries to the entire staff.
“The reaction was stellar,” Craig said. "Employees felt loved and appreciated during this crazy time. Working from home has brought new challenges regardless of the situation. People enjoyed chatting on their doorstep, even if it was for 1 minute. And several employees told me how proud they were of Exigo for taking the time to consider how they could help the community.”
I’ve been with Exigo for almost a year now, and that delivery to my doorstep was just one of many times I have witnessed Exigo's care not only for its employees, but also for its community.
Our internal communications channel began to light up with photos of families enjoying a welcome treat and the thank-yous from employees all along a 95-mile stretch of Utah's Interstate 15 corridor. That's when Craig shared a thought on that channel that captures the essence of Exigo's company culture: “Please find ways to help and serve during this time. There are so many people who are facing a major crisis right now. Exigo is positioned to succeed. Let's not forget those around us who aren't as fortunate and find ways to help them.”
Your true colors come out in a time of crisis, and I couldn’t be more proud of my team and our values than I am right now.
What does serving your community look like to you?
For Craig Beirdneau, it's caring for Exigo employees and his favorite local businesses; he even used his network to go above and beyond by helping Zapples sell the remainder of their inventory.
Now decide how you'll help someone out during this crazy time.
Lift. Build. Empower the one. That’s the Exigo way.
Based in Lindon, Utah, Exigo has been setting the standard for social and direct sales industry software platforms since 2013. Exigo’s powerful SaaS platform boasts fully configurable management tools that are vital to not only running, but to efficiently tracking and growing a business.
With its focus on providing an intuitive and impactful customer experience to both corporate clients and independent sellers, Exigo has revolutionized the way direct selling businesses can be launched and managed.
The platform is fully extensible using open APIs and therefore, able to meet the needs of corporate users and independent sellers. Exigo is committed to helping both organizations and their distributors plan for and drive growth. Its vast experience in the direct sales and software industries have proven time and again that the company truly understands how to help clients succeed. To learn more or request a demo, visit directscale.com.