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Casey Pittman9/30/22 12:00 AM9 min read

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

For Human Resource Professional Day, we wanted to take the opportunity to spotlight  our People Operations team. Below we share our thoughts on what teamwork is and how it impacts our roles and Enervee’s company culture.

The concept of teamwork is distilled into us from an early age, through school projects, sports and even household chores as just a few examples. Through these scenarios, it is easy to see the impact of your teamwork with your counterparts; either your team is successful on the field or it’s not, either the laundry that has been washed is then folded or it is left sitting in a pile, collecting wrinkles. 

Applying this long-taught concept of teamwork in the workplace however can bring its own challenges and seeing the results of a high functioning team can be even harder, especially if your team is geographically dispersed. There is hope though! All thriving teams have common factors that help them achieve success, including communication, accountability, and collaboration. 

Below you’ll find Q&A responses from Enervee’s People Ops team that shed light on how they foster Enervee’s culture and keep our teams’ goals aligned with Enervee’s mission.  

What is your role in People Ops and what do you like best about it? 

Randi Halbmaier, People Operations Manager

Randi: I’m the People Operations Manager for the Enervee team. That means after an employee is onboarded with the organization, my focus is on setting them up for success at Enervee. It’s a big job, especially for a team that’s growing as quickly as we are. However, the satisfying part of this job is that I get to be behind the scenes helping people with things that impact  their lives at work and at home. Benefits, engagement, planning, career pathing, life events, you name it! I love that I get to help employees flourish - and every day is vastly different.

Casey: I’m a Recruiter and I really enjoy my job; each day is a little different. I love the process of finding our new team members, it’s sort of like a puzzle! I also enjoy getting my hands into other aspects of People Operations and ensuring our folks feel supported and plugged in.

Laarni: I’m the Director of Recruiting at Enervee. Many things inspire and bring me joy in Recruiting. I love building teams and influencing the diversity (knowledge, views, and perspectives, as well as age, gender, and race) of high performing  teams. This role allows me to build creative teams and seek out inspiring leaders. Notably, our hires last year were  56% female. 

Roopali: As SVP of People & Finance, I lead the People Ops team. What I love the most about my role is to have the opportunity to advocate for how we as an organization build on our culture and the way we operate. I also love that at Enervee we have an executive team that is highly invested and contributive in this process.

What does People Operations mean to you?

Casey Pittman, Recruiter

Casey: When I think about “People Operations'' I think about employee engagement and how it relates to employee productivity. We want to make sure our people feel taken care of professionally and personally, and we do this by viewing our people holistically. No business can succeed without its people and when people feel truly valued, they are happier, more engaged and more productive.

Laarni: Our People Operations team here at Enervee is employee centric since they are our customers. We believe that attracting and retaining people is only part of the story: optimizing them and their employee experience is key to business success - from onboarding to separation, we aim to make their journey a good one!

Roopali: Managing employee experience (the entire journey an employee takes within an organization), employee engagement (the relationship between employees and organization), and employee wellbeing (overall mental, physical, emotional, and economic health of employees).

Randi: It’s so exciting to be in the HR space right now with the shift in thinking around HR as a business unit. Traditionally, HR has been a department or sub-department that individuals would just ‘fall into’ based on need,  company size, and job responsibilities. Organizations, such as SHRM and HRCI, as well as other HR leaders have really highlighted the importance of the HR function and how critical it is for aligning enterprise strategies across teams. It’s important that this shift in mindset - and terminology -  is not just a buzzword but a transformational act within the business function approach and delivery. 

In the words of the late, great Maya Angelou, “at the end of the day people won't remember what you said or did, they will remember how you made them feel.”

What brought you to this career? And what do you like about it?

Laarni Canoy, Director of Recruiting

Laarni: I stumbled into college recruiting (from top universities) earlier in my career in a VC / PE company in Silicon Valley. It was such a small part of my job. After my MBA & after experiencing the full spectrum of  People Operations  roles, I’ve learned that talent acquisition makes me very happy and scaling growth companies is a very rewarding experience. I get to build and enrich the culture of my company while doing the work I enjoy!

Casey: To make a long story short, my path to get here has been anything but straight and narrow. I’ve switched career paths a few times, but at the heart of all of my roles has been caring about people, building relationships and leaving a lasting, positive impression.

Roopali: Finance teams have the benefit of having insight into the present and future needs of the business and the biggest value we can add is to use these insights to help connect the dots and support other teams in the organization. Partnering Finance & People teams is an effective way for organizations to build a people-centric business.  Personally, being able to apply problem-solving beyond numbers/the  bottom line and to supporting people across the organization is very rewarding. 

Randi: My path has been unique in the different HR roles that I’ve held across various industries in the last decade. This has molded me as a professional and personally and I find it makes me more relatable and empathetic to the different types of operations or departments within an organization. I have an organizational and strategic perspective in how I can bring things together, which is very much why I pursued a project management emphasis with my MBA. I’m a better HR leader because of my understanding of what to look for, ask, and how to partner with these leaders to provide the support they deserve. This leads to what I love most about my career: I get to help a broad range of people achieve personal and professional success, and in doing so, I help the  organization succeed. The exposure to the diverse range of operations, experiences, and perspectives (selfishly) helps mold me into a better HR leader.

Casey: To make a long story short, my path to get here has been anything but straight and narrow. I’ve switched career paths a few times, but at the heart of all of my roles has been caring about people, building relationships and leaving a lasting, positive impression.

What best practices can you share to magnify your impact towards the team and the company as a whole?

Roopali Mehta, SVP of People & Finance

Roopali: People Ops efforts have the most impact when they are aligned with the needs of the organization. I would encourage everyone to actively engage with your Manager, Leadership or People Ops team to provide feedback that can help teams be productive, collaborative, and engaged. 

Laarni: Timely huddles brought a huge impact to our hiring team here! Team interviews are a big investment of time among the cross functional members and getting aligned via these brief meetings provide clarity, effective decision making and gets everyone on the same page. It brings a more well rounded view to a candidate’s credentials and allows us to choose the best candidate decisively.

Randi: I think there are two main best practices that I can lend. The first is that I believe being a lifelong learner is essential no matter what your title or role may be. One of the best pieces of advice I learned in school was to choose an advanced degree that would challenge you versus refine what you were already great at. I love seeking out opportunities in various avenues to further my knowledge base. For my literal folks, this can take place in the form of books, webinars, social events… you name it.

The second best practice is to prioritize relationship building in personal and professional settings. My tip for doing this is to practice active listening. By constantly practicing and honing this skill, it will help deepen relationships in all parts of your life. And remember, relationships require follow through! 

Casey: One best practice, from my perspective, is learning to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. Don’t be afraid to roll up your sleeves, get in the weeds and make a mistake, it’ll pay off!

In your perspective, what makes your teamwork unique in our People Operations team?  

Randi: I live by the aphorism that we win together and we lose together. I also think a steady work environment is crucial: not too high when times are great and not too low when challenged. If we maintain a steady pace and work together, this helps avoid burnout and lack of creativity or flexibility within the team. Additionally, I try to maintain a positive approach and see the good in the small things in life - like a great cup of coffee in the morning or a fresh bouquet of flowers in the kitchen! I’ll take the small wins anyday.

Casey: I think that our teamwork is unique because we all seem to operate under a team-first mentality. Regardless of the task at hand, everyone is willing to step up to do what is needed. This approach helps build trust among us, which directly impacts our success.

Laarni: We have a team that has a phenomenal work ethic and strong dedication to our work and each other.  Having a team that I can rely on and be happy to help out all the time makes me feel so supported.

Roopali: What helps to keep us aligned as a team is having a clear understanding and agreement of what we need to accomplish and determining ownership. Within that framework we work collaboratively and keep each other accountable. Our interactions are direct and constructive with some fun sprinkled in!