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The Remote Show







Show Notes:

Kuty's links:

LinkedIn

Twitter

Clevertech website


Transcript:

00:00.00
Tyler Sellhorn
Hello everyone my name is Tyler sellhorn and welcome to another episode of the remote show where we discuss everything to do with remote work with the people who know it. Best. Thanks so much for listening the remote show is brought to you by we work remotely. The largest community of remote workers in the world with 220000 unique users per month we work remotely is the most effective way to hire. Today we are blessed to be learning out loud with Kuudy Schlev Kudi is an operationsd drivenven technologist and the Ceo of clever tech as the leader of Cleverex's operations infrastructure people ops clever you and various other programs Kudi is the shepherd of clever tech culture and their core values of freedom mastery and purpose kudi has an Mba. from Columbia University and a b a from yeshiva university and was formerly a management consultant with pricewater housecoops in New York kudi is an active member of the New York City angel investing community serves as an advisor or director at a number of startups in New York and is an active speaker in industry conferences in the us and Europe. Kudi welcome to the remote show tell us what problems are you trying to solve at clever tech.

01:02.44
Kuty Shalev
Thanks for having me here Clever Tech offers opportunity and we offer opportunity to software developers who value remote have good people skills and solid fundamentals. These are typically people who care a lot about self-improvement.

01:24.75
Tyler Sellhorn
Awesome! Awesome! So when you say you're solving to invite opportunity for software developers that have people skills tell us more about what that even means like when you describe a software developer with people skills. What? what's on what's on the menu there.

01:43.36
Kuty Shalev
So we really care about, um, let me try again. See you're diving into people skills.

02:04.10
Kuty Shalev
Um I don't I don't want to dive into people skills just yet right? So that I want to start with remote.

02:07.93
Tyler Sellhorn
Okay, what do you want to start with okay all right? So so tell us more um could he I'm really curious to learn what does remote mean to clever tech.

02:21.94
Kuty Shalev
Yeah, so we don't talk about this in polite conversation most of the time but do you notice that that people hide the topics that are most important to them. They kind of dress it up in this polite word like we say the word remote. And ah, what the actually means is really relevant for each of the individual people that we're working with so why do people like remote in the first place and it really depends on on who you are. The way I think about it is that they really want to make a better life for themselves. This is especially true when you're dealing with people who are in countries that have strong math and computer schools. Maybe they live in in other time zones for us. I see them in in places like Canada Mexico central and South America and and when they talk about remote. They they use some other terms that I hear and and they mean very specific things right? number 1 is that it means that they earn. In usd they earn in the dollar and they may be coming from different countries where their currencies are not quite as strong and if they earn in dollar it puts them and their life in a much better situation right. Another thing that I hear them talk about is that they want to work in an english-speaking country right? and and when they say that what do what do they mean they mean that they want better opportunities. They they see that the the world of technology is certainly in english and. Talk about having good people skills. Good communication skills and that's ah, a critical underlying factor that again, most people don't talk about and then they want to work not just for an english-s speakinging company but for a company that has us clients. And and when they say that what do what do they really mean don't really care specifically I don't think about the United States they care about the fact that the ah the fastest growing companies the companies that are most valuable. Um, those are the ones that are in the us and therefore it means they. Have better opportunity for themselves. But I think the one.

04:45.99
Tyler Sellhorn
Let me say some of these things back to you cuty you're telling me that the that the developers that come to work at clever tech very often when they say remote they don't mean all of these. Kind of like like the future of work you know type of things that often is is ah is a topic of conversation here at at we work remotely here on the remote show but you're saying that what they mean is that they want to earn their paycheck in United States currency right so instead of maybe they're they're they're where we're the country that they happen to be working with that. They want to work in an english speakingaking workplace and that they want to be serving clients in the United States because of you know the the assurances that they're going to get paid on time. I think that's really awesome that you guys have pointed your direct efforts towards providing opportunity to the people for whom remote means those things I'm sorry I I interrupted you just to say those things back to you what were were you going to say.

05:50.86
Kuty Shalev
Well so those 3 things are what I was saying but I saved the best for last the the people that I notice take advantage of this. Remote opportunity are those that move from 1 country to another right? This is this is huge um in today's day and age there are so many so countries and states that may not be providing its citizens what they're looking for. And when they look around and they want to shop for a better jurisdiction right? They they would like to have whatever it is that another country is promising being in the world of software development where the demand is so high gives them the capability. Of moving. Let's say from Argentina to Canada from Brazil to italy from Ukraine to Mexico and and these are all real migrations that we've seen here at Clevertech because because we're hiring remotely. Long as we take care of the time zones and we take care of the clients where you physically are located is really not that important.

07:10.80
Tyler Sellhorn
Really Cool. So and what I'm hearing is that once we start taking care of the needs of an individual person especially inside of a high skill role like software developers. Once we take care of those needs in terms of you know their compensation and you know where they happen to be allowed to work very often where they started working from isn't where is serving them or their families. Best is is that what I'm hearing you say.

07:44.79
Kuty Shalev
Yeah, and I think what's interesting is that for so long. There has been a tradition that you live where you work. And if you have a situation or a desire that doesn't fit into that box then you're made to feel like that's the wrong thing to do and you've got to do exceptional things if you're trying to make that change. But today. Things have changed. You know so I've got stories of Victor who is moving to italy from Brazil because he's getting exploratory treatments for his son's genetic disease right? and and he could not have done that just could not. There was no way. And no matter how much the local company where he was living may have felt the way they were structured would not allow for that.

08:51.65
Tyler Sellhorn
Well thank you clever tech. Thank you italy right? Thank you for the the research that's being done to serve Victor's family and I think that is the story that that we're saying is that there's very very specific humanitarian stories. That are being solved once we decouple our work from our location right.

09:13.96
Kuty Shalev
Yeah, and it's and it's not just people who may have a a problem and a breakdown that they need to solve. But it's also people who are just trying to better their life. So um, you know for example, somebody else here at clever tech whose wife got a grant. In a university just not in her home country. Yeah, it's yet to go to Europe and and they're going to move there so she can go after her dream while he is able to continue seamlessly to be working without any break and continue on his career.

09:48.85
Tyler Sellhorn
Yeah I think that that story of of the following spouse right is is very often. You know when one or the other or or you know in the victor's case we we had it with a child that that needs to be somewhere specific right. Ah, you know having that other family member who who may even be a breadwinner right? Not be stuck right? Not be left behind or or somehow like giving up on a career because they happen to be moving along with with ah a spouse that that has got a grant at a University That's not where they are.

10:24.46
Kuty Shalev
Yeah, and yeah, the the limits that you think are blocking. You are are not really there and we've supported people right at here at Clevertech when you're trying to move from one country to another.

10:26.15
Tyler Sellhorn
I think I think those those are awesome important stories.

10:43.75
Kuty Shalev
That's not so easy and in many cases there are governmental rules that you have to follow and in some cases here at clever tech I've I've seen people who you know may have family connections. Their grandparents were in. A european country and allows them to create an eu passport from South America but but we support people here too right? because we're able to as a worldwide company. We've got over five hundred developers here and and we have been able to help people. When it makes sense to earn right? I think Canada has been doing it really well these days the us has started to but that's it's kind of difficult certainly getting all types of remote visas in different countries has also kind of shown up so there's lots of different opportunities. That are available and it's not limited to work that is down the block from where you are.

11:47.60
Tyler Sellhorn
I mean were we're we're asking the question now now that we're not commuting into an office in near our residence right? The question is being asked where can my passport take me. Where can my passport take me because I can take my work there.

12:06.47
Kuty Shalev
Exactly right? and and I want to kind of maybe move this a little bit because as soon as you start thinking about the ability to travel 1 of the big questions or the big concerns that people have is you know if my colleague is sitting in the office. Next to his boss and I am traveling around the world right? does that put me out as a disadvantage for my career and and I think that that's probably true you create much closer bonds when you are in person and you're eating a meal together. But at a place like clever tech. We are 100% remote. Every single person is remote from every single other person. There is no office and so I like to say that a clever tech remote is not a second class citizen.

13:00.98
Tyler Sellhorn
exactly exactly we um we we hear stories from those hybrid organizations that need to deal with you know what? you described as proximity bias right? You know who is nearby where where is company leadership working from are they are they working from an office. How are they you know showing up as a remote worker themselves if they are at all right? and you know how do we even in 100 % remote companies. How? How do we quote unquote have a meal together right? Like what? what are those things that we can do.

13:35.50
Kuty Shalev
So I Want to tell two stories about that if I may so one has to do with the actual work and what we end up doing oftentimes is that when we have a kickoff or a big presentation for a client. Ah, we will fly everybody in and spend a few days together and we do believe that in-person is very valuable I don't think it needs to happen every single day but that is something that that we do obviously pandemic. A situation had changed that for a while but that's something that we are still committed to and in fact, Clever Tech has a innovation center where we have flown in clients and clever tech staff to sit together in order to strategize. Plan New tactics and have the in-person Meeting. Ah.

14:44.82
Kuty Shalev
Yield the types of innovations and the types of leaps that that we're looking for.

14:51.68
Tyler Sellhorn
Even in 100% remote company there. There isn't some sort of rejection of the fact that there is value to being face to face in the flesh right? There is value there but we shouldn't optimize for that type of interaction. Only.

15:09.21
Kuty Shalev
So I want to give you a second story which has to do with the the culture here at Clevertech so we are always looking to create thicker relationships with the people that we bring in.

15:10.88
Tyler Sellhorn
Right? yes.

15:26.18
Kuty Shalev
Our slack room is I'm always amazed to hear the stories and the sharing that people are doing and the only reason they're sharing is because there's a space for it and it's encouraged but 1 of the programs that we launched a couple of years ago that has been super successful. Came from a desire to take people out to lunch sit down with them and share why they're important but we couldn't do that and so what we did is we launched a program where for one week we opened it up that every single person. Should go out into their community into the people slides that they found valuable many times these are family in some cases. Good friends and take them out to dinner on us and share with them like we had to share with them. Why they're taking them out explain to them what they're grateful for and what they allowed them to do in their lives which is at the core of every relationship. And then we asked them to take some pictures and and give us a little write-up of what it was and and we would share that for the entire week the entire week. Our slack would be filled with pictures of whether it's significant others parents grandparents some people did use this for for charity and it was just a wonderful. Way to innovate in the space of creating remote relationships.

16:58.78
Tyler Sellhorn
I Think that's really really interesting to say hey we we can't take you out to lunch but there are people but we can take you out at least to pay for it. But the the person that we most want you to take a lunch with. Is someone that's already in your life right? You know we're we're doing a business here right? We're We're happy to support. You know, culture building and and fly you in and be in person you know together. But when when we're all separately in our own time zones working in our own ways we want to enable you. To become your best self in those spaces that you are already residing and or or maybe where you choose to reside ah in in the future I mean we already talked about the migrations that are happening. Go ahead.

17:39.99
Kuty Shalev
Yeah, but because a lot of times. Yeah, because because a lot of times when we're dealing with remote There's a reason people are remote if you are looking to make the most amount of money. Right? Then I recommend you move to San Francisco and work yourself 10 hours 12 hour days and you'll likely make the most amount of money if you do that. However, what we're looking for are people who maybe you've done that. Right? And you've kind of realized that that is kind of thin and you want some more satisfaction in your life and not not just the highest paying job and and oftentimes we see people who want to be important sorry we see people. Want to be close to the most important things in their lives and what does that mean that means you know I'm having a family and I want to spend time with my children. It could mean that I have aging parents and I want to help them. It could mean that I just love to surf. And I would like to sit in ah in ah you know on the on the shore and be able to go out surf every single morning and we have countless of stories of different people wanting to do different things but the the. What they share is that they value being close to something that's important to them that isn't just currency and that opens up this interesting situation where they're not in a high cost of living city like San Francisco they're able to be close to nature or in a more rural distant place. Good internet of course is important but it opens up this remote option. You have a better life in total and that's why a program like that that says hey go celebrate with the people that you care about. Resonates so well with our folks.

19:51.79
Tyler Sellhorn
I Do think that that um re reimagining where work and life are placed in in our lives right? You're describing putting. Something other than an office close to the people that work at Clever Tech we're we're saying put the things that are important to you as a person in proximity to you right? We're talking about proximity Bias so often in like. Well who's working in the office and who's but I really like this this way that you're expressing it to say No no, no, we want you to place in proximity close to you The things that are most important to you and not necessarily to us.

20:41.98
Kuty Shalev
And we'll be partners in that right? We'll support that and if you notice everything we've been talking about is within the bucket of freedom right? Our value of freedom because. Different people think about freedom in different ways and and and while we're we're in this topic I did want to mention a few things that are related to freedom at work. Not just freedom of location and freedom of spending time with what's important to you. But but freedom within work because what I've seen there are some places that really micromanage you at work to the point where they monitor your keystrokes or turn on your camera to make sure it's really you behind the keyboard and I understand that. Understand companies that have that fear and companies that don't have that trust but here at at Clevertech we believe in building trust and we believe in giving you freedom professional freedom. The way I like to say it is you know freedom means you don't have time sheets which we don't we don't have time sheets and I recently read somebody put this on Twitter exceptional work is greater than ours worked. And that's very very true There's some interesting connotations. We can get into that if we like but it it means that if you have solid work nobody cares exactly how long it takes and that's the mark of a pro a pro. Means that you attune to the needs of the clients and you ensure those are met. There is no arbitrary rule of how many hours or how many lines of code which is easier to measure but has nothing to do with whether or not. We actually satisfied the concern so we organize around that.

22:55.52
Tyler Sellhorn
Plus 1000 to optimizing the way we organize our work around the outputs instead of the inputs right? placing priority over measuring the results. You mentioned exceptional work over time right? I think that that that is a theme running throughout the remote show is is one of the things that remote you know we've talked about lots of the things that remote meant right? One of the things that remote can mean is that freedom to work. In ways that serve the client best and sometimes that is actually more easily achieved in a remote space you you were saying.

23:42.16
Kuty Shalev
Yeah I think that we are. We're shifting right? We're going from freedom and now we're moving towards master rape when you're talking about exceptional work and you want to get to exceptional work. How do you get to exceptional work and and what are the ways that you can. Attain mastery in this domain. So can I talk for a bit about our training here. Okay so I find that when people talk about training. They oftentimes think of sharing. And learning and memorizing information. That's what we do right? We we go ahead and we we read the right things or we watch the right videos and and then we memorize it and we practice it and then we know how to do it right. I am going to assert that training is not about information. You don't need me to gain information right? There's this wonderful thing called Google something else called Youtube and just about anything that's important to enough people. You'll be able to listen to the information when you're there. But if you look at the number 1 problem for software developers. Typically it's not I don't have the information I think the typical thing that you'll hear about is we built the wrong thing right. We didn't understand the problem sufficiently it has a lot to do with um, understanding and coordinating. It's one of the major reasons waterfall development. Pretty much nobody does that anymore. Why why do we use agile and development because you get more chances to share with the actual end users so that you get enough feedback to make sure that you're on the right path. So so what? I'm asserting is the critical thing is not knowledge. People often ask hey what? what courses can I take what's the next skill I need to have and the most important skill is to be able to coordinate with others and and here's a secret that everybody knows we're human beings and we coordinate. Through language right? So I'm in the in the universe of speech acts where we make things like requests and offers and declines and declarations and understanding what conditions of satisfactions are and when you're in a conversation.

26:24.67
Kuty Shalev
These speech acts come at you fast and furious. There is no oh hold on Pause. Let me go watch the video or read the book and give you an answer. No who are you right? Who are you as a person and are you skillful enough to take the right actions or the actions that are going to yield the. Satisfaction that we're after so the training.

26:46.95
Tyler Sellhorn
Thanks for going deep on. Yeah, thanks for going deep with with the training and mastery there and you know just some of the things that you're saying to me is what what do we need to do as as we are working together. We we need to understand we need to Coordinate. We need to Speak. We need to make requests. We need to Declare. We need to you know make offers These are the this is these are the the building blocks of of a team right? becoming the best team it can be right? is you know, being able to respond to requests. In the appropriate ways right? We we need to be able to take action in in the ways that our our customers are expecting of us.

27:26.74
Kuty Shalev
So I wasn't going to go too deep into this but I will ah to respond to you. You make it sound very simple like hey we just need to do these things but we're blocked many times we're blocked by our own moods of. Insufficiency right? So I don't know what this guy just said am I going to say I don't know if I say I don't know is he going to look at me like a real professional right? Maybe I should just be quiet and I'll pretend right? So That's a very typical thing and and it's very uncomfortable. Ah and how do you deal with that. Ah, and it's not so simple to to give you just the answer that says just do it right? That doesn't mean I Always like to use exercise or or trying to lose weight as the example because we all know we need to eat less and exercise more but we don't do it right? So So if we're trying to train professionals to get. Better I can't just have you read a book or tell you what to do? It's not going to work our training. This is our our leadership training program happens in a game. Yeah, a game Why a game because. 1 of the best ways to try to help people memorize or change themselves is wrapped in emotion. It's wrapped in emotion and if you are a game player. You know you're pretty attached. This representation of yourself which is like the the play or icon on the screen so much. So There's entire economies that have been built around digital clothing and jewelry and possessions and I know that you feel bad when your player dies on screen I mean it's kind of funny. But it's undeniable, right? It's a ah digital representation and the things stop moving but you feel this deep ah Terrible. We use that in our training right? We actually create teams we're trying to create high performance Teams. We put those teams together in a game and we give them challenging assignments and then we see how everybody acts especially when things don't go right? and and the the results that we get has been pretty phenomenal. Developers have come back and they. They share that. Not only is the the game good right? similar to real life coding and has lessons that they can take from it in the actual in actual work. But some of my favorite.

30:17.53
Kuty Shalev
Is when they tell me that they take some of these things at home. They start changing how they make requests. They are able to better adjust the automatic moods that show up and the automatic negative assessments. That make them feel terrible and now they're able to make new moves. They're able to take new directions able to make new offers and able to get to a better place where their relationships are better and that's what we want to Work. We Want the client relationships to be better.

30:55.70
Tyler Sellhorn
I Want to say? Thank you so much Kooty for this opportunity to be invited into pretending less and playing more right to take the opportunity of us coming together in a remote workplace. In person sometimes um, you know, completely distributed at other times and to be reflective and to learn and to grow and to become our best selves at work at home and in all the different ways that we interact. Thank you Very much.

31:26.91
Kuty Shalev
Um, awesome. Terrific.




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