The following are the primary types of expense incurring trips which can qualify for full or partial financial support from the company:
Conferences, industry meetups, seminars, etc. are very common in our industry and beneficial for us to participate in. Attending in-person events can be fruitful in a number of important ways:
- Marketing. At times we may choose to sponsor events and send employees as representatives of Sandhills in an effort to increase our exposure and engage prospective customers directly.
- Networking. Meeting and building relationships with others in the industry, not just those who may buy our products, can have a powerful impact on our business. We can learn from others, form strategic partnerships, introduce new channels of communication, and more.
- Meeting customers. Answering support tickets and tweets is one thing. Speaking to real customers in person is completely different. Listening to our users explain what they’re trying to accomplish, what their problems are, what they’re grateful for, and what they ultimately want from us, is extremely important. Meeting them face-to-face gives them an opportunity to communicate to us in way that can’t be done virtually. Also, it reminds both parties that there are real humans behind the software and the tickets alike.
- Giving back. We’re not only concerned with what we can get out events. We do believe in helping others as well. Our team is made up of talented, experienced professionals who are capable of organizing, volunteering, and speaking at events. Sandhills supports these efforts.
- Education. Last but certainly not least, there is a lot we can learn from others at events. Supporting the personal and professional growth of each employee is very important to us. Whether it be sitting through sessions, seeking mentorship from peers, or informally conversing with other professionals, every single one of us can still learn something.
From time to time, in-person meetups consisting of groups of Sandhills employees will be coordinated. One of these will be our annual all-hands retreat, but this does not need to be the only gathering. Teams interested in collaborating more closely and fostering closer relationships are encouraged to propose and help plan smaller group events. Some examples could include:
- Brand specific like “Restrict Content Pro meetup”
- Department specific like “Support team meetup”
- Role specific like “Owners retreat”
- Project specific like “SellBird launch meetup”
Employees are also encouraged to meet with each other when possible, especially when doing so would help increase the speed in which issues are resolved or the likelihood of projects succeeding. Collaborating in person can be the perfect way to accelerate progress on a project, improve production quality, and reduce communication breakdowns. At the same time such occasions can be helpful for strengthening relationships, sharing knowledge, and mentoring.