This year, Airtable’s Cultural Moments team is excited to kick off Latin & Hispanic Heritage Month by sharing the stories of two of the amazing organizations out there powered by Airtable: RingCentral and Estúdio Nômade.
We interviewed Diane Martinez (she/her), Program Manager of Web & e-Commerce Accessibility at RingCentral, and Larissa Lazzari (she/her), General Manager at Estúdio Nômade, about their work, how they’re using Airtable, and what Latin & Hispanic Heritage Month means to them.
Tell us more about what you do at RingCentral.
I am the Program Manager of Web & e-Commerce Accessibility at RingCentral, a worldwide cloud communications provider. When people hear web accessibility, they think "people with disabilities."
But the truth is web accessibility improves the experience for everyone. In my role, I get to collaborate with every team in the software life cycle, from design to QA and everyone in between to drive accessibility. I'm especially lucky to have such an amazing and supportive team.
What drew you to Airtable?
I used Airtable prior to working at RingCentral. My husband is a tennis instructor and I used Airtable to create a way for him to track his lessons, payments, list of customers, and expenses. So when my manager, Georgiya, wanted to use Airtable to track our work, I was eager to help out. I ended up creating the bases for a number of folks on my team and creating automations that bring many bases together.
What does Latin & Hispanic Heritage Month mean to you?
It's a wonderful opportunity to talk about the amazing diversity that exists in our community. Hispanics are found all over Central and South America, as well as Europe. Each country has a rich heritage and amazing history. To me, the month is about celebrating the differences and similarities in our culture.
Sadly, I've met only a handful of fellow Hispanics in tech throughout my career here in America. The irony is that there's a huge community of Hispanics in tech in Central and South America that I've met along the way, but they are supported to pursue roles in tech. If a company wants a more diverse tech team, they need to go to where they are, such as organizations and universities that have a larger pool of the underrepresented community.
Estúdio Nômade Spotlight
Tell us more about Estúdio Nômade.
Nômade was born in Brazil from the long-term friendship of its two partners, who returned after some time exploring Barcelona, Spain, full of ideas and eager to innovate through Strategic Design and Social Psychology.
And this is how we have been bringing solutions to medium and large companies for almost 15 years, associating behavior analysis and design tools aimed at organizational transformation and brand positioning. Companies like Nike, Nubank, and Outback have already benefited from our services, currently segmented into Team Building and Organizational and Service Design.
How does your organization use Airtable?
We have been using Airtable since 2018 to centralize project information, but the truth is that it’s an extremely versatile tool. I often call it the “Disneyland of spreadsheets!” Due to this versatility, we created an exclusive methodology to carry out fast and productive Scrum retrospectives, which we call “Retro Surveys.”
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we became an "anywhere-office" company. One of our decisions was to reduce as much as possible the number of processes and tools used, and to insert good distance communication moments between the team. Scrum inspired us to do so, and one of the rituals is to carry out a retrospective at the end of project sprints to understand how the week was and identify improvements.
Through the form view, we generate a long text space and, just below, another space where the person categorizes (with Airtable’s Single Select feature) their information between 'good' and 'not-so-good' things. A third category called 'next actions' is useful too.
When the video call meeting starts, everyone already has the link to this form, which is always the same, and each one fills it out from wherever they are while we listen to some music.
After everyone enters as many answers as they want, we open the kanban view, which will be automatically categorized, concentrating everyone’s answers in two columns. We read the items aloud, commenting on them or not—an interesting part of using an online form is that the information can be anonymous, with freer responses.
Finally, we could export a dated report of this kanban using the Print View, saved as PDF feature. This is another very streamlined task compared to Retros with virtual Post-its, since transferring Post-it information to another type of document to save it to the cloud in an accessible way requires harder work.
What does Latin & Hispanic Heritage Month mean to you?
Nômade believes in Living Businesses and defends continuous attention to humanizing data. In view of this, our methodology is based on helping companies understand the importance of listening to the different audiences they work with. Therefore, we see this collaborative space as a beautiful initiative.
In addition, I think that putting Latino culture on the agenda highlights its immense creative and diverse potential. Talking about Brazil, we need to use our imagination all the time to enable company growth. We need to have an open look at problems, reinvent ourselves, transform and know how to use the network around us to become stronger. There’s a lot of opportunity, there’s a lot of work to do.