By Simone Shorter, Talent Success Manager, Programs, Box
Box’s mission is to power how the world works together. We recognize that a big part of how the world works together involves building and establishing community. So, it is really important to us at Box that we provide the space for our employees (Boxers) to build community and create platforms to elevate what we do across those communities. We consider it key to our success for many reasons and know that it aligns with our company value, Bring Your ___ Self to Work Every Day. The blank is intentional as a way of leaving it open, meaning that everyone can fill in the blank with whatever they want. It's essentially saying, bring YOU!, your whole self to work. When we live up to this value, we're able to attract and connect with the best talent, which enables us to build the most innovative products that deliver the best value to our customers.
What attracted me to Box is that community is built into our company DNA. Day one at Box, we host a Community and Culture presentation for all new Boxers in New Hire Orientation. Everyone centers on how we think about it and how they can get involved. In this session, we encourage Boxers to reflect on what community they will join – whether it’s across their functional group or on a global scale – and what strength they can bring to that space. We share information about the key elements of our community that enable Box to invest in co-creating a culture where everyone feels a sense of belonging. To name a few, we have Boxers from our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) who lead internal communities of support for underrepresented identities, Box.org representatives who focus on increasing engagement of our philanthropic efforts across offices, and Chief Fun Officers (CFOs) who curate and cultivate the local Box culture across global regions to connect and engage every Boxer in their office.
As these communities have grown, we've been intentional about how we create platforms for the groups to engage and interact with one another because we believe we're at our best when we can empower each other and align with our shared values of creating space for everyone. We understand and respect the many types of spaces that are built internally, but we envision a world in which all the elements of our community interact and collaborate as a part of a larger ecosystem.
My role as a Talent Success Manager is unique in that I get to work across all of our community efforts to both streamline the work we are doing and to weave it into our talent development function to sustain this ecosystem. To do this well, we embed our Talent Development philosophy into our community work. We are constantly evolving this, but lean on a set of key leader mindsets for how we think about developing and growing all Boxers. Within our community leader mindset, we challenge Boxers to be role models of our company values, demonstrate commitment to the Box community by being actively engaged, and champion inclusion and belonging. The benefits of creating an ecosystem where this all thrives together is that Boxers who are engaged in our community are building out essential skills for their growth in the areas of stakeholder management, team development, team engagement, budget management, executive presence and more. These skills are vitally important for their development and challenge Boxers to flex leadership muscles outside of their core job functions. We also know that community work makes a long-lasting impact on the company, as well as on the individuals who benefit from the culture that is created as a result.
We also realize that each part of our ecosystem feeds into the others, so we are intentional about the work we do within, and in service of, our local communities. Our community pillar that we call "Beyond" encourages promoting and supporting the community outside of our walls. This happens through local partnerships with Box.org and through connections that Boxers already have with their local community, like our participation and support of GLAM (Girls Leadership Academy Meetup). In my role working across those groups, it's been really rewarding to see how this type of mindset has elevated Boxer development and continues to make a positive impact in the communities surrounding us. When we serve our external community, we understand how critical it is to growing our business, blowing our customers’ minds, and being a contributing member of our society.
Our community work is something that makes Box a truly special place to work. We hope to keep building on the strong foundations we've established for years to come. We've always got more work to do but are excited about the relationships and partnerships we're able to develop as we get further in our journey. And, we're proud to say that our community is big part of why people come to and stay at Box.