Making Your Remote Meetings More Efficient with Charles Kergaravat

Charles Kergaravat is the Head of Growth at Yac, a product that aims to stop all the meetings. It’s a new communications alternative for remote teams that offers a voice messaging platform for remote teams instead of offering video call meetings. Charles is also the founder of Breizh Amerika, a non-profit organization established to strengthen cultural and economic relations between the U.S., France, and Breton.

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Remote business leader

Luis Magalhaes:

Welcome ladies and gentlemen, to another episode of the DistantJob Podcast, your podcast about building and leading remote teams. I am your host, Luis, and my guest today is Charles Kergaravat. Did I get it right?

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, you got it right. Thank you. Great to be here.

Luis Magalhaes:

Wow. Thank you. Well, Charles helped me practice beforehand, so that’s how I managed not to mess this up. But anyway, Charles is the Head of Growth at Yac, a very, very, very interesting product that aims to stop all the meetings, right? It’s a new, it’s a communications alternative for remote teams, designed remote first. And this is very interesting to me so I hope that we’ll get on to you. Talk about the philosophy behind the product, how it works, why they built it, et cetera. But first of all, I want to start a bit back and ask why remote, and specifically Charles, what’s your history with remote work? How did remote work, change your life? And why did the people behind Yac decide that it was time for a remote focused communications tool?

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, great. Great to be here. And this subject matter is so important. I mean, we’ve never asked ourselves as much or question where we should be working as we have the last 15, 16 months.

Charles Kergaravat:

My remote work journey actually started before the pandemic. I’ve been working remotely primarily for over six years. 100% of the time now, like a lot of us, but before it was like 80% of the time and it was totally a new thing. I mean, I sort of fell into it and I can tell the whole backstory about that because I worked in a very corporate fashion before, but it was around 2016 where I started working remotely because it was just worked out that way. And I just found myself really enjoying it, really working better, having better work-life balance, producing more and just being more myself in a work setting.

Charles Kergaravat:

So it’s been a dramatic shift and I’ve always been an advocate to talk about it and to tell people, “Hey, secret, you should try remote work.” I think now the remote work secret is out. Everybody’s tried it, a lot of people have found value in it. And now as a new chapter, many organizations are re-imagining, redesigning how they’re going to work again. And I don’t think remote work can not be part of that. So it’s a very interesting time.

Luis Magalhaes:

It definitely is a very interesting time. So tell me, how was your relationship with Yac? When did you join the team? When did you figure out that you wanted it to be a part of this?

Charles Kergaravat:

It’s a fascinating story. I mean, I think life happens in such a way sometimes. So I had seen them, Yac has been doing great things for a little bit and they kind of made some noise on the internet, on Twitter, because they won a Makers Festival with Product Hunt. And I had seen that and I had taken a look at it and I really loved what they were doing. Thinking about asynchronous communication, how we were communicating as remote teams, but making voice a central part of how teams got things done. And I had seen them, I checked it out, I looked at it. I was like, “oh wow, I love this. I love this product. I love what they’re building.”

Charles Kergaravat:

And, being curious, I just followed the founders and saw what they were posting and a lot of times totally agreed with what they were saying and how they were saying it. And I was at CES, the Consumer Electronics Show, in Vegas. And I was a speaker at the CES that year on the Future of Work track. And if you’ve ever been to CES, it’s just absolutely madness, right? It’s like 180,000 people. There’s people everywhere. It’s just like madness always, right? Yeah, the phones where you can bend them first and stuff like that. And they release all these new products.

Charles Kergaravat:

So I was there and walking the halls and I run into, literally run into, two of the founders. And I say to them, “Hey, what are you doing here? What’s going on?” And there’s a great moment where they pause and look at each other and said, “You know us?” And I’m like, “Yeah, you’re the guys from Yac. You’re doing great things. I love it.” And they were just like, “How does anyone even know us?”

Charles Kergaravat:

And I was a speaker at that conference so I had kind of VIP access and I invited them backstage and say, “Hey, let’s get a coffee. Let’s come and talk shop. Let’s talk about the world of work and the future of work and all that.” And we had a great conversation.

Charles Kergaravat:

We stayed in touch for over a year, and then the pandemic hit. And a lot more people were thinking about remote work tools. We’re thinking about going async. And I think that Yac is totally the way that everyone’s going to work in the future. And right now a few people are jumping on the bandwagon and that’s been great for Yac. They had a Series A and with that, very naturally, they called me and now I worked there for a few months.

Charles Kergaravat:

So it’s a great experience. We’re doing amazing things. And what’s great is we’re really helping people. We’re helping people eliminate meetings. We’re helping them enhance their communication on a day-to-day basis with their teams. And what’s really amazing is we’re saving everyone time. So all of those, it’s really hard to argue.

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah. So I do want to talk a bit about those. I have actually tried Yac, but not deeply enough to be able to talk about that with anyone, much less someone who actually works there. So I’m not going to try and talk a lot about your product, but I want to step back for a moment before we go on about what Yac is doing to help people avoid meeting. Because you got me curious about your speaking gig at CES.

Luis Magalhaes:

What were the panel? I mean, the panel was about the future of work. What was your premise there? What did you talk about?

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, so I’ve been working in this field for six years and obviously been really focused on the world of work and how teams do what they do. How do they communicate? How do they meet, how do they collaborate? And I’ve done research around that have worked with people at NASA, top university professors, and actually I’ve done my own studies. So at the CES, they have a Future of Work track and this particular track was about millenniums and millenniums at work. And what were their expectations? What were hoping for? And this is funny because this was before the global pandemic and a lot of the things they were hoping for, I think they kind of got when the world stopped and we all went remote.

Charles Kergaravat:

So it was a fascinating conference in track. And especially when you look back at it now, after everything that’s happened, it’s super interesting.

Luis Magalhaes:

So what kind of conclusions did you present? What was your main thing about that?

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, so I think when we talk about younger generations and we talk about millenniums and even people that are younger than them, their general expectation of work is much different. We’re no longer in an era where we’re going to work for the same company, like 30, 40 years, right? The average worker is staying at a company under five years. And what their goal is, is a certain amount of flexibility, but also getting something out of it, right? They want to understand how their job matters, how their job fits into the rest of their teammates, the rest of the mission of the organization. And they want to be a plug in that. They just don’t want to be someone who does tasks, right? They want to understand how they fit in and how they fit in to a certain mission. That’s super important.

Charles Kergaravat:

And organizations as a whole have to start thinking differently. I think there’s been a great focus maybe in the last 5-10 years, organizations are becoming more customer-centric. And that’s super important. Like if you’re creating a business, you want to be successful, think about your customer and think about how you can make your customer successful. When we talk about organizations, don’t only think about your customer, think about your employees. And talking to HR folks the same way an organization focuses on being more customer-centric, you need to become those, that effort you put into being customer-centric, you need to put that effort into being employee-centric as well.

Charles Kergaravat:

And some of the things that are super fascinating is people want to have flexibility, but they also want to learn. And if you ask millenniums, “Hey, what did you learn in a month that pertains to your job?” It’s very sad. It’s like under 30%, that would say they learn something that pertains to their job. And I think this is a great moment of reflection for everyone that goes to work, people that manage, people that do things that have employees active every single day.

Charles Kergaravat:

How do people learn now? And I think the global pandemic has seen a lot of younger generations hoping to go back to the office in some way. And one of the reasons that some people are saying, “Hey, we need to get back everybody to the office” is that we want our teams to learn. And that’s kind of not thinking about how we learn. It’s like you might learn on the fly because you’re next to other people. You might learn something in the hallway. And that’s a very dangerous thing because that’s kind of a guessing game. We definitely need to focus on learning, but we have to make it deliberate. And we have to be transparent in how we do things. So just saying, “Hey, everyone, back to the office” because younger generations are going to learn there, that’s completely wrong. You can be 100% remote or you can be 100% in the office. If you don’t set times for people to be able to learn and be deliberate with that, it probably won’t happen.

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah. I absolutely agree with that. I think that the idea about the office is really lazy, right? You use the office as a proxy for not wanting or not being able to create systems that help the business work. That just, you try to shove everyone into the same space and then they’re obviously they’re going to learn by watching, by talking, by seeing, but that doesn’t feel efficient at all. So I do think that one of the most important things in remote work is a culture of documentation, right? So that people who want to learn, who need to learn, can go and learn at their own pace. And if everyone documents what they’re doing, how they’re doing, and why they’re doing, everyone has the tools to asynchronously learn, get that experience that they needed.

Luis Magalhaes:

And you’re right, mentorship plays a part as well. It’s nice to have colleagues and not just feel that people, that work is just transactional, right? That the other people in the company aren’t just there to give you an output when you need and for you to give them an input when they ask. It’s nice that it’s not just like a video game, but that you actually build relationships with those people. But none of that requires you to be in an office, as far as I’m concerned. I’ve had this experience over many, many years, made lots of friendships through the internet. So it definitely doesn’t feel to me like it needs to start in a physical location. Sure, it will certainly be beneficial to get your remote team together sometimes. But nothing says that the magic spark happens when you start at the physical location, right? If this makes any sense.

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, totally. I want to talk about a few of the things you just said. You talked about writing things down. And I think more than anything, we need to think about transparency when we work and how we work and where we work and how people can add on to our best ideas. Because generally we talk about the office and we talk about meetings, that’s actually where our best ideas go to die. Right?

Charles Kergaravat:

And we talk about the office, usually things happen in the corner office or things happen in side conversations and it’s not solving the problem. So more than just saying, “Hey, I’m going to document, and this is going to take an eternity to document and I’m going to make it look pretty,” think about transparency. Think about how you communicate things, and think about how things don’t end up in silos. And there’s a number of ways to do that, right?

Charles Kergaravat:

I think there has to be a correct balance between meetings, between documentation, that could be Google Docs or other things like that, but also Voice. And this is where I think asynchronous Voice really has a place to be with us because if we become too text-based focus, it leads to a lot of miscommunication. It can be misunderstood or things like that. And Voice offers a lot of bandwidth, a lot of nuance in a lot of contexts when you share it. So I think it’s about setting up a mix that makes sense for your teams in your organization, between, “Hey, we are going to meet from time to time. Hey, we’re going to have things written down and ask everyone to participate to build on that. But also we’re going to vocalize a lot of stuff and we’re going to replace meetings with things like Yac.”

Charles Kergaravat:

I also want to think about creativity because it’s really interesting the things that we’re hearing right now about, “Hey, we really have to get back to the office because we can’t be creative. We can’t innovate.” And that’s a funny thing to say because all of a sudden the water cooler has become like the epicenter of creative thought. And in reality, it’s not that. I think we might be a little bit nostalgic and we miss our colleagues and that’s totally normal. We want to hang out. But I don’t think the water cooler was ever where rockets were getting started in getting into space, right? That’s a false narrative.

Charles Kergaravat:

What is really important for creativity and innovation is diversity. Diversity of thought. And what we want to do is get people that are very different. That have different interests, that have different skillsets, that are in different places and getting them together and facilitate those moments. A coffee machine and a water cooler does not facilitate innovation, okay? It just might be a place where people come together and complain about the boss. Take very diverse people with diverse ways of thinking and bring them together and ask them to create something and set timelines for them to do that. If we start doing that, that could be done remotely, that can be done anywhere and we’ll be successful.

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah. Well I think that it even goes beyond that. You need to create a quiet space, right? I don’t know, maybe be alone with your thoughts. It’s not like the ideas show up on the water cooler.

Luis Magalhaes:

I had an idea for a new software product. The other day. I was in a call, much like this one. I’m talking to someone else where we were using a service, a video conferencing service, and after the conversation, not during the conversation. When I reflected upon the conversation, that’s when my idea came. And then what did I do? I thought, someone who I could probably talk with this. I have a friend that will probably be interested in this idea. Let me send them a voice memo. Let me call them, let me do some say, “Hey, I had this cool idea, right?”

Luis Magalhaes:

Your company’s culture is in a bad place if you feel like you need to have a water cooler to have permission to talk to people. In a culture that’s not dysfunctional, you’ll be able to call people. You’ll be able to say, you know, to ping someone and say, “Hey, the cool idea. Want to talk about it.” You shouldn’t need to have that space. That space makes no sense unless people are afraid to talk to each other in a different context. And again, that doesn’t seem like a great place for a company to be in. And I don’t want to be in that company where I don’t have the latitude to ping someone, right? Unless they’re standing around the water cooler.

Charles Kergaravat:

You’re talking about something great. Because we think about having space and having space to be creative and to come up with new ideas. And the reality is we don’t have time for that space anymore. We don’t have space for deep work because we live in a world of work where we’ve never had as many meetings as we do now. That’s part of something that’s happened with the global pandemic. It’s like 13% more meetings every single day since the pandemic started, but we’ve never had as many emails and as many kinds of notifications from Slacks, and things like that from other chat apps, as today. So we are on average getting 126 emails a day. And our day is non-stop notifications in an inbox. And we have meetings the rest of the time. So we kind of catch up to work after all of that stuff. And we’re not leaving any time to be creative.

Charles Kergaravat:

So this is a very important moment, the steps that we’re taking now. So organizations that say, “Hey, we need to rush back to the office.” That’s not the right way to look at it. We need to take time and say, “Hey, how are we taking time to do certain things?”

Charles Kergaravat:

Probably half of the meetings we have the stand-ups, the check-ins could be taken away. It could be asynchronous, asynchronous Voice. Why not? A lot of the notifications is because I’m not being very thoughtful. I’m sending you a thread and it keeps on going, and there’s a miscommunication. Let’s be more thoughtful with how we’re communicating with our colleagues and really block off time for deep work and say, “Hey, I’m going to spend time here thinking about things. I’m going to spend time maybe reading something or listening to something, listening to this podcast. And that’s going to help me be more fruitful to come up with new ideas.”

Charles Kergaravat:

But if you don’t block off the time because you useless meetings, that’s never going to happen. So we need to be better at planning our days. And sometimes managers need to help that. And I think one of the things that we see is that managers should no longer be someone that just checks when you arrive and when you leave. They have a more of a mentor role to say, “Hey, I’m seeing, you’re doing a lot of busy work. Maybe you should slot off some time to learn something or think about something or build on this”, and give time for them to do that. And I think that should be the future.

Luis Magalhaes:

Oh yeah, absolutely. And to your point about ideas, again, I have never been in a meeting, in a so-called brainstorming meeting, where anyone came up with any good ideas. I’ve just never seen it happen. Maybe some people have. I’m not saying that Bigfoot doesn’t exist. I’ve just never seen one. Maybe some people have, but in my experience, what you can do in the meeting is you can bring your own idea and other people can bring their ideas, and then maybe you can have a healthy competition of ideas, or try to improve each other’s ideas. But I don’t, I have never seen an idea, come forward from the ether during a meeting because it’s just that mind space, right? Or a good idea. I mean, if I say, “Charles, let’s take five minutes to brainstorm ideas about X here.” Sure, we can come up with words. I just don’t think they will be very good.

Charles Kergaravat:

I’ll give you a couple of reasons for that. And that’s a good question saying, “Hey, why don’t we come up with great ideas when we’re all stuck in a meeting together?” And there’s a number of reasons for that. Some of the research I’ve done 79% of the time, it’s the same two people that do all the talking and come up with all the ideas which means that they’re not leaving a lot of space in that 30 minutes or 40 minutes for anyone else to even say anything. And there’s another thing about that, is like, that’s in the moment. Maybe there was no agenda for this meeting. Maybe I haven’t even thought about this topic. Maybe I haven’t even done any research. And when you have say, “Hey, this is going to be a strategic brainstorming session”, give people time ahead of time to come up with ideas, brainstorm ahead of this meeting. And this is about planning as well. Many will say introverts don’t like being on the spot. So give them space ahead of time to come up with some of those ideas.

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah. And the intention, or in this case, the lack of, matters. I mean, there are tons of stories about, I don’t know, the founders of Google, being at the Starbucks and coming up with the idea for Google. The plan, there was no agenda saying “let’s meet that Starbucks and come up with business ideas.” They were hanging out, right? They were not alone, they were together. But it was a moment of relaxation, of casual banter. It was unscheduled.

Luis Magalhaes:

When you schedule the water cooler, when it’s, first of all, I don’t think that water coolers are places of relaxation anywhere, right? You’re at the weather cooler, you want to get your water and you want to get back to work because you have stuff to do. But even if you try to replace that with our “let’s schedule a brainstorming session”, it won’t work anyway, because again, you don’t necessarily need to be alone to get good ideas, but it doesn’t work like that. Ideation doesn’t work on schedule. It works when you’re thinking about something else, when you’re just casually shooting the breeze with the friend or something like that. Right? So the whole concept is completely out of whack with what people are trying to do.

Charles Kergaravat:

I think it’s Hemingway that said he’d spent a lot of the time thinking and very little time actually writing. And that’s where he got his idea. So yeah.

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah. For sure. So let me change tracks a bit, because I’m interested in knowing, because obviously you have very unique opinions of how work should be done remote at Yac. So why don’t you tell me about your average day or average week at Yac? How does it work out? How do you communicate with the team? How does the team communicate with you? How is your work day, work flow setup?

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, so I think I’m lucky enough to have lived many kinds of corporate lives, per se. I worked in very corporate settings earlier on my career in New York City, which was extremely formal, right? Everybody’s in a suit, everyone’s in a tie. You’re now allowed to sit in a certain chair because you’re not like a director or whatever that is. So chairs will remain empty. You don’t really speak. Everything’s very formal. You’re in a world where you write these really formal emails. And, we’ve seen things where planes, I think it was Boeing, that had some issues and employees knew about it, they didn’t say anything. So, and that happens with a lot of silos. So I’ve really lived multiple lives were very siloed worlds, very closed, corporate worlds, everything’s happening in the office. And I’ve sort of flipped that script.

Charles Kergaravat:

I personally moved out of New York to France, to Brittany, France, which is a very, we’ll say rural area. There were probably more cows than people in the place that I moved. And I had no possibility of doing what I was doing before. So from that point of view, I think we’ll say starting from nothing and discovering remote work and discovering that it gives you a lot of flexibility. It gives you a lot of space, but it also allows you to be very curious and creative. And that’s led me into a lot of the roles that I have and has suited me really well.

Charles Kergaravat:

So at Yac, we’re 100% remote and there are people actually everywhere in the world. There’s one of our lead developers is a digital nomad. He every two weeks, three weeks, he’s changing countries. So it’s hard to keep track where he is.

Charles Kergaravat:

We’re Florida based so some of the teammate members are in Florida, but there’s people everywhere in the world. And that’s never a hindrance to our success to get things done because we’re totally, asynchronous. We’re 100% remote. And everything that we do is asynchronous and Async Voice is kind of like the bedrock in how we communicate. So we have no meetings. So if you’ve ever experienced working for a company where your schedule is all about meetings and that’s all you do, back to back to back to back, when you have no meetings or you only have meetings for really important reasons like welcoming a new colleague or doing something, a meeting for something really strategic, and you can cut out all the clutter of useless meetings because you are communicating with your colleagues through Async Voice.

Charles Kergaravat:

That’s super powerful. You win back a lot of time to do things that are important, right? Figure things out, be creative, come up with stuff, document it, build upon other people’s ideas and collaborate better. So I think that’s what we’re about. And we see that what we’re trying to do and what, how we’re helping our customers is really leading them to this sort of promise land, where you can be async. Everyone can do that. You can eliminate meetings, you can communicate better and you’re doing it just with the power of your own voice.

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah. So what does your week look like, in that case? Without meetings, what does a week without meetings look like? How do you get updates from your team? How do you engage in conversations, et cetera? Can you give me a glimpse of this? This promise land looks like.

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, so I’m on a different time zone some of the team, which I actually really like, because I know that every morning I would probably not have any messages. So my day might start where I have messages from the day before. So I kind of catch up and add to that. And then I have time for deep work, like, “Hey, what are the things that I really want to get done today, this week? And build upon that.

Charles Kergaravat:

Then what we do, we communicate through Voice. So Yac’s really powerful as a platform to do that. You have channels. So depending on the team and the department, people communicate through there. And you can catch up and share what you want there. And usually when you do that, you’re being very thoughtful. And you’re trying to maybe give feedback so you’ll share your screen and have your voice over that and share feedback on something. You can move forward projects just through the channel. So it’s really free-flowing. It’s kind of like the opposite of a very fixed workplace model. And here it’s very fluid.

Luis Magalhaes:

All right. So I know we both have deadlines to keep and I want to be respectful of your time so I want wind down with a couple of rapid fire questions. You don’t need to answer rapidly by the way. So first of all, if you have 100 bucks or Euros, I mean, you’re living in Europe, so let’s make it the Euros, to spend with each person working with you, with each team member, and you can’t give them the money, you can’t ask what they want or give them a gift card. You need to buy something in bulk, but it can be anything app, tool, experience, whatever. What would you give everyone working with you?

Charles Kergaravat:

Does it have to be the same thing or?

Luis Magalhaes:

Yeah, it has to be the same thing. You have to buy in bulk.

Charles Kergaravat:

Oh wow. I would probably, because I’m from a region then many people don’t know about, I live in Brittany, France, so it’s a very unique region. So I would probably think about something from here that they can either touch or taste and to make them travel a bit to where I’m from or the things that I live every day that they can’t.

Luis Magalhaes:

You have nice cheeses. So-

Charles Kergaravat:

We’ve got a lot of stuff there from seafood to pastries, there’s a lot of stuff. A lot of things to drink as well.

Luis Magalhaes:

Nice. So you could give you, you could get a nice French gift basket.

Charles Kergaravat:

Well, so it won’t be French. It’s from Brittany. So it’s Breton.

Luis Magalhaes:

Oh, okay. Sorry, my bad. So what about yourself? What purchase have you made in the past six months to a year that has measurably or considerably improved your work life style?

Charles Kergaravat:

So I don’t know. I feel like people buy less things now. I don’t know if that’s true and I think that’s probably a good thing. I’m a fan of the Apple AirPods, actually. My parents got me that for my birthday and I just like, “wow, this is really a great product.” So I mean, they sell so many of them, but I find myself, sometimes we talked about movement and moving and creative ideas come places you don’t expect them. And I just put my AirPods and I sometimes I’m very close to the beach and I just walk near the water and I find that to be number one, a good way to resource myself. But also a great way to listen to maybe a podcast that I was supposed to listen to, that I didn’t have a chance yet. And, and it’s just a great product.

Luis Magalhaes:

Nice. It comes, several guests have recommended that to me now. I actually don’t know why I haven’t got one because I do enjoy Apple products, but it just felt that they couldn’t be that much better than the current ones that I use, but maybe they can. I’ll need to investigate that better.

Luis Magalhaes:

So let’s talk about books for a minute. Do you enjoy books? Do you give books away?

Charles Kergaravat:

Oh yeah. Look at my library back here.

Luis Magalhaes:

Oh yeah. That’s a nice library. Mine isn’t as visible as yours. So do you enjoy gifting books? I gift a lot of books. Do you gift books?

Charles Kergaravat:

Sometimes, depends on the person.

Luis Magalhaes:

Okay. So what books have you given out the most?

Charles Kergaravat:

Trying to think about it. I don’t- a book that I’ve given out? I could probably tell you what I’ve purchased recently. Maybe that’s an easier one for me to remember.

Luis Magalhaes:

Sure. That’s fine. That’s fine. Or what would you give to me? You know, knowing that I’m interested in remote work and stuff like that.

Charles Kergaravat:

Okay. Okay. So there’s a couple of books, and I actually have some books next to me. I didn’t know you were going to ask me book questions. There’s a book I highly recommend, a friend of mine wrote it, it’s the Surprising Science of Meetings from Steven Rogelberg. We have way too many meetings and Steven talks about ways to make them better. Yac helps you eliminate them, but sometimes you have to have them. And I highly recommend the Surprising Science of Meetings.

Charles Kergaravat:

A book that I recently purchased for myself, and it’s sitting next to me right here, is London Pubs. I’ve um, there was-

Luis Magalhaes:

I want that one.

Charles Kergaravat:

We’re not allowed to travel. And I think you think about, “Hey, what would you like to do?” And for a very long time here in France, in Brittany, all the pubs were closed. So I saw this book and it’s really wonderful spots that you’re like, “Hey, I’d love to have a pint there.”

Charles Kergaravat:

And another one is that I have right next to me is A World Without Email from Cal Newport, which I highly recommend as well, because we get way, way too many emails. So I use Yac to eliminate too many emails, but also a great book here to pick up and to find out a little bit more about how you can do that.

Luis Magalhaes:

Fantastic. I’ll definitely want to read that. I love Cal Newport, so I’m going to give that a go.

Luis Magalhaes:

All right. So final question. This one has a bit longer set up, so please stick with me on it.

Luis Magalhaes:

Let’s say that we’re back to a position where we can have dinners with lots of people, right? Let’s assume that’s going to be the case. And you, my friend, you are hosting a dinner where there’s going to be a round table about remote work and the future of work, topics that you are familiar with. So in attendance are going to be the decision makers, that’s top tech companies from all around the world. Here’s the twist. The dinner happens at the Chinese restaurant. So you, as the host, gets to choose the message that goes inside the fortune cookies. What fortune cookie message are these people getting/

Charles Kergaravat:

Coming up with this on the fly is quite tough. I think I would ask them, maybe, “Do you want to make sure that your teams really attain the heights that they want?” And to do that, don’t ask them where they want to work, ask them where they do their best work. And I think everyone, especially larger organizations, right now are kind of scrambling and they think about hybrid work. And they’re asking people where people want to work right. Two days a week here, three days a week there, or whatever. And I think that’s a mistake. I think we really have to ask people where they do their best work. And I think if we do that, it’ll maybe change our perceptions about what we should be doing in the future.

Luis Magalhaes:

Got it. That’s a great place to end, I think. Well done. Well done.

Charles Kergaravat:

Thanks. Thank you.

Luis Magalhaes:

I do want to ask you, before you leave. Well, first can they follow up with you or can they continue the conversation, but also where can they learn more about Yac and what it provides?

Charles Kergaravat:

Yeah, definitely. If you were having questions about going async, if you have too many meetings, if you have poor communication, I would say go to Yac.com and test it out. You can test it out for free and I’m more than happy, if anyone wants to connect with me on LinkedIn, on Twitter. You can even connect with me on Yac. And I think we can leave my Yac profile here in the text, the description, so people can reach out. I think there’s a lot of challenges in the world of work ahead, and there’s no reason for us to go back to the status quo, right? Let’s let’s reinvent how people work and where they work together. So hit me up.

Luis Magalhaes:

All right. That sounds great. We’ll include links to all of that in the show notes. Charles, thank you so much for being here. It was a pleasure.

Charles Kergaravat:

Thanks Luis. Bye bye.

Luis Magalhaes:

And this was the DistantJob podcast, your podcast about leading and building awesome remote teams. See you next week.

Luis Magalhaes:

And so we close another episode of the DistantJob podcast. And if you enjoyed the episode, please, you can help us out by sharing it on social media. That will be great. It’s how we reach more listeners. And the more listeners we have, the more awesome guests I can get in touch and convinced to participate in these conversations that are a joy to have for me. And I hope they’re a joy for you listen to as well. You can also help a lot leaving reviews on iTunes or your podcast syndication service of choice. Reviews are surprisingly helpful in helping the podcast get to have more listeners. Now, another thing that you might want to do is go to DistantJob.com/blog/podcast. Click on your favorite episode, any episode really, and subscribe. By subscribing, you will get a notification whenever a new episode is up and whenever we get the transcripts of the episodes up.

Luis Magalhaes:

So you can actually peruse the conversations in text form. And of course, if you need to find a great employee for your team, a great remote employee, you should take the whole world into consideration and not just look to hire locally, not just look to hire in your country. Look around the whole world because that’s the talent pool that contains the best talent. And to help you with that again, DistantJob.com is the perfect place to start. You will tell us who we need and we will make sure that you get the best possible category, 40% faster than the industry standard. And with that, I bid you ado. See you next week on the next episode, DistantJob podcast.

 

More ways to listen:

After thousands of companies started working remotely because of the pandemic, we’ve all heard about the “Zoom fatigue” and how video call meetings cause burnout. Constant video-call meetings demand and energy from team members, leading them to exhaustion and lower productivity.

During this podcast episode, Charles Kergaravat shares how having a no-meetings policy at Yac has changed them for the better. He shares tips and strategies to help remote team leaders make their meetings more efficient and understand that working remotely is not about controlling your team but trusting them.

Highlights:

  • How the mindset of employees has changed during the past years
  • Understanding why learning in the workplace is crucial
  • Why does transparency in a remote setting matter
  • Insights about voice meetings and how they help avoid misunderstandings
  • How creativity isn’t related to water coolers but to diversity
  • How to make meetings more effective in remote teams
  • Insights about Yac’s no-meetings policy

Book Recommendations:

 

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