Today on my way to work I got sidetracked by the wafting smells of a local bakery and ducked inside to grab a warm, chocolatey croissant. While savoring said croissant, it started pouring outside. To make a long story short – I haven’t been able to leave for hours due to the Noah’s Arkish circumstances outside.
It’s Friday and though the weekend is almost upon us, it’s still a busy day at the office. Under normal circumstances I’d be panicking at the rain that’s threatening my uber long walk to work because A) my boss would get mad at me for not coming in on time, and B) I wouldn’t be able to get as much work done from a coffee shop as I would from my desk.
Thankfully I don’t have to worry about “A” since I am the boss (phew), nor “B” because of Zirtual’s focus on “freedom” in the workplace. I can get just as much work done from my little corner in this cafe as I could if I was in my war room at the office .
When I started working on the idea that would eventually become Zirtual over 2 years ago I was working from coffee shops religiously as I traveled a lot and didn’t believe in stationary “offices” so to speak. After I moved to San Francisco and Zirtual’s core team grew bigger we moved into a real office of our own in the Financial District. This has been both a blessing, and a curse. I love the community feel of a busy office but miss the work I used to be able to pound out in solitary bliss back in the old days.
Because of this, me and my co-founders have taken to working out of the office several times a week, at home and at cafes around the city. Fortunately for us, our headquarters are based in SF, though most of our team works remotely from all over the U.S. We have Zirtual Assistants working in Las Vegas, New York, D.C., New Orleans, and Los Angeles—just to name a few.
I love being able to hire people and immediately give them this freedom. The freedom to work flexible hours wherever they feel most comfortable. We’ve noticed that when you free up people locationally it often opens up their mind to new forms of creativity and solutions that help their clients. Not to mention, building a team that is remote (through strong core values and technology) makes a huge difference in the bottom line – which is critical for any startup in this economy.
Many clinical journals have linked depression in both children and adults to lack of purpose. I felt this depression when I was a teenager because I wasn’t clear on what I was going to do when I “grew up”. I knew that I wanted to do something big, to change the world, to fight the status quo – but I had no idea how and if it was even possible for me.
The first time I realized that one can create massive purpose by starting a business that changes people’s lives was also the first time I felt that I could achieve lasting hope and happiness. One thing I’ve always been concerned with in building Zirtual was ensuring that we’re creating a business and environment that gives our employees purpose above anything else.
We create purpose by pairing our ZAs with clients who we know they will tremendously benefit by saving their time, attending to their needs and most importantly improving their lives. As someone who has worked with clients as an assistant many times in the past, I can tell you first hand that nothing makes you feel better than knowing you truly helped someone—especially a client who you have built a relationship with.
Other companies are creating purpose for their employees in different ways. Zappos is delivering happiness to their customers and in turn building a powerful community of employees who get both purpose and joy from their jobs. If you’re a startup, creating purposeful employment is key to getting and retaining top talent. If you’re a job seeker, you should seek companies that give you a sense of fulfillment.
If you’re looking for work, especially virtual customer service orientated work, then apply to become a Zirtual Assistant. We’re hiring smart, savvy people who LOVE helping others and strive to take care of their clients.