Since Core Ventures opened up our doors in January 2017 we have had a fully remote workforce. We had, and still have, a brick and mortar office, but coming in has always been optional outside of a handful of regularly scheduled meetings. The reasoning had been that you can recruit from anywhere and the benefits of being able to work from home far outweigh the cons. Also, it allowed us to attract working moms who weren’t quite ready to jump all the way back into a full-time, in-office, work schedule. More on that later.

In January of 2020 though, our team had grown significantly and we were starting to get more serious and intentional about our culture. I made the decision to pivot from fully remote to partially remote, with plans for all team members to spend half of their time at the office on designated days. The reasoning behind this decision wasn’t complicated. I felt that with a growing team we risked being disconnected and that building culture would be slower if we weren’t rubbing elbows on a regular basis. I decided to roll out this new policy on March 12th at our all-team meeting. That’s March 12th of 2020.

by Trevor Lee

When life outside of work gets hard there are two common responses. One is to compartmentalize whatever is going on–creating a wall between work and the rest of life. The other is to have your work totally derailed. Neither of these is tenable.

Compartmentalizing serious issues in your life to keep them out of your work sounds like a good idea on the surface. After all, your failing marriage, loss of a loved one, crippling debt, struggling child, or medical diagnosis have nothing to do with your work. Except they do. The idea that your life can be broken up into pieces and walled off from each other just isn’t true. While you may be able to stuff your emotions and focus on your job, the subconscious is far too strong to make real separation possible. Your pain in life will start to leak out eventually, whether that’s in treating co-workers poorly, producing subpar work, or finding ways to medicate.

On the other hand, having your work totally derailed by problems outside the office isn’t an option either.