Return-to-Office Series: Our Conversation with Miro
This week our team sat down with Omar Ramirez, the Head of Global Workplace Services at Miro, a company that has created an online, collaborative, whiteboard platform, one that was adopted by countless companies as they were forced to go remote in March, 2020, and which has been adopted by many more since. Miro has experienced significant growth during COVID, and over the last year and a half, the company’s headcount has climbed from 300 to 900+. This unprecedented growth has left Omar with the challenge of building out the company’s global real estate portfolio and designing offices, or “hubs,” that support Miro’s way of working and reflect its culture.
Miro has stayed true to what the company represents and has taken a collaborative approach to the design of its new office spaces. “What we’ve been doing…is running co-creation sessions with our employees and allowing them…to give input on what their future spaces might look like,” said Omar. Of course, all of these sessions are conducted using the Miro platform!
Miro has made an effort to keep their workplace discussions as open and welcoming as possible. “Every single Mironeer has the opportunity to participate in [them]…. 51% of people have participated… so if you think about a 900-person company, 450 people across the globe participated in these sessions from every level of leadership, all the way to the person who just joined yesterday…,” said Omar. He believes that this inclusive and iterative process will lead to the development of exciting spaces that truly meet the needs of the company’s employees.
In Omar’s perspective, using Miro’s whiteboarding tool has made all types of employees feel comfortable participating in the workplace brainstorming sessions. “I think that the boards have been helpful for us because typically the people who speak up the most in live sessions tend to be people who are already vocal, and I think that the boards have given people who might not typically speak up in these sessions, the opportunity to still participate… but in a way that feels more comfortable to give feedback without having to necessarily defend their position or feel intimidated...” It’s great to see that technology, if used correctly, can increase feelings of inclusivity and community.
But, should Miro’s employees really be trusted to know what’s best for them when it comes to their workspace? Omar thinks that they should! He shared, “I do feel like our employees are more informed than they’ve ever been about what works for them and what doesn’t work for them, and that’s exciting. People actually understand what makes them work better or not, more so than they probably did pre-pandemic… And I think that’s good for us, because we want to [benefit from] that [newfound] attention and use it to help make better spaces for them.”
It was fascinating to hear about Miro’s collaborative approach to workplace design, and exciting to learn that it has been so successful. What are your thoughts about Miro’s approach? Has your company adopted a similar process?