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Company Culture

Transparency, Meet Community: Here’s What’s New for the Open blog

At Buffer, our journey has been full of experiments, pivot points, reflection and transitions, and it is our privilege to share them all with you here.

Today, we’re excited to update you on a few changes here on the Open blog!

For a while now, Courtney has been the incredible shepherd and heart of the Open blog, reporting on the lessons we’re learning at Buffer and sharing insights on happier, more productive, more creative work from all kinds of smart folks.

Recently she has transitioned into a new full-time passion as Buffer’s first Inclusivity Catalyst. This created an opportunity for someone within the Buffer team to take the helm of the Open Blog (and my, what an amazing legacy to follow!)

Here’s the full story of what we have in store for the future of the Open blog!


Hello from your new Open blog editor!


When I learned Courtney was stepping into inclusivity full time, I was pulled toward the Open Blog as it has so much potential and ways to serve the larger Buffer community. But was it the best fit for me? Is having me in this role the best thing for Buffer?

To share a bit more about myself, I’ve been a part of the Buffer team for two years this April and I’ve been so honored to serve as the first Community Champion. I’m a journalism major and historical fiction writer, so writing and contributing the Open Blog has been a passion of mine throughout my tenure — as I’ve recently returned from ten weeks of family leave, I’ve been re-crafting what my role looks like as Community Lead.

Through discussions of the future of the Open Blog with Courtney stepping away, an idea came up to bring the Open Blog under the community umbrella.

This resonated with me — both for our internal team community and external community. Through the past two years of learning from our community, I’ve been so touched by how our friends and customers enjoy hearing what we’re up to at Buffer.

With our value of transparency, the Open Blog is vital to sharing data, challenges, new avenues and more! From my personal experience while I was on family leave, I turned often to the Open Blog to feel in the loop with all the latest in the company. Thus, as our team is growing (we’re nearing 90 teammates!), the need for more internal communications has arisen.

This brings us to where we are today! After considering so many options and ways that the Open blog might tie into my personal and team goals, it felt like this was a solid match!


So what changes for the Open blog?

What does this mean for you, our beloved Open blog community? Hopefully lots of cool things!

The Open Blog will begin posting more frequently and regularly, for one. The types of posts you might find will remain similar to what you’re used to in many respects, and we’ll also be testing out a few more types of posts (some shorter posts, more Buffer team member posts, perhaps more guest posts? The sky is the limit!)

I’m excited to share more stories about what we’re experimenting with and learning on the Buffer team, and I’m eager to learn from you as well.

Here are a few upcoming posts to look for:

  • From startup to scaleup: How do you know when you stop being a startup? What does it look like to triple your team size in a short time? Joel shares a thoughtful reflection.
  • Buffer’s new product structure: We’ve recalibrated yet again as we work to achieve the best results for our customers. We’ll share all the details of our current model.
  • The editor/operator model: Some leaders are best at focusing on the executions of projects and processes. Others want to dive deep into a few projects and focus on creativity, vision, and problem-solving capabilities. How do the two work together? It’s our newest experiment!
  • Diving into OKRs: We’ve been heavily inspired by Google’s model of OKRs, which stands for stands for Objectives and Key Results. We experimented with them for the first time in the first quarter of 2016 and we’d love to share what we’ve learned so far.
  • and so much more!

Here’s a glimpse of our ideas Trello board!

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 4.12.29 PM

And though she’ll still make frequent appearances on the Open blog to reflect on insights around inclusivity and diversity, Courtney wanted to share a few words about her time at the helm of the Open blog.


From Courtney
Before I found my home at Buffer, I had never given a lot of thought to the culture of work.

I experienced environments both corporate and startup. I filled out intricate vacation forms months in advance at one job, and played darts and drank beer on the clock at another. Through each experience, I shrugged and thought, “I guess this is just how it works here.”

But at Buffer, culture is impossible to take for granted. Here, I finally came to understand that culture isn’t just “how it works”. Culture is made by people – every day, with every word and decision.

That’s why it’s been such a privilege to explore stories of workplace culture on the Open blog with you for the past year. Why we work is as important as what we make, and culture is a worthy – and fascinating – area to write about and think about.

As I dig deeper into a specific area of Buffer’ culture – inclusivity – I’m excited to leave the Open blog in fantastic hands and ready for a bright future.

It’s a huge honor to follow Courtney’s rockstar work here on the Open Blog, and I’m grateful to learn from her, Leo, Ash, Kevan and so many other content experts here on the team.

We are excited to be on this journey with you — to learn, grow and adjust as we try new things!


Turning it over to you!

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, or feel free to email me! What would you like to see more of here on the Open Blog?

  • Welcome to the Open blog, Nicole! I’ve loved following Buffer’s journey on this blog and I look forward to seeing what you’ve got in store for us. :)

    • Thank you!! :) So grateful for you following along! :D Cheers!

  • I love Buffer. WOW! 90 team members – that’s quite an achievement AND all those personalities, skills, interests, values, opinions, dreams – and still the stability of your culture is evident. I try to read every post and hope I can keep up with your increased number of occurrences. Whether sharing snippets from your workplace or bring tips on how be successful with our social media practices and telling us about tools and technology – Buffer is best. Congratulations to all the team players who are trading places and moving chairs.

    • Thank you so much for the encouragement, Jane! it really means the world to us to have friends like you. :)

    • Thank you so much, Jane!! :)

  • Keli’i

    Congrats on the baby and the new responsibilities with the blog! I recently finished reading Work Rules by Laszlo Bock and am looking forward to hearing more about how Buffer is incorporating OKRs.


    • Thank you so much Keli’i! I’m really excited to share that post and adding that book to my to-read pile! :D

  • Erin

    Seeing the Buffer Open Blog email pop up in my inbox is always a high point of the day. I love the way you all challenge your community and provide helpful insight along the way. I’ve absolutely loved hearing from you, Courtney, and you’ve always inspired me to write more and write better. And as another Buffer Genius, Nicole, (as I’m convinced you all are) I know you’ll do great things for the community. I’m so excited to hear from you in the future!

    • Oh wow Erin, thank you for the very kind words! It has truly been a privilege, and I will still be very involved in “culture of work” discussions at Buffer–just in a new way. :) Will share more soon!

    • <3 Courtney inspires me so much! :) I promise, I won't let her go too far! :)

      and you're too kind, Erin!! :) Thank you so much for all your support!

  • Ian Robins

    Congratulations to you both! I always enjoy reading this blog. Really looking forward to hearing how you’ve implemented OKRs. We’ve started using this approach at the start of the year and I hope to blog about it soon. Keep up the great work!

    • Than you so much! I’m really excited to explore the OKRs post – we have so many learnings to share! :) So grateful for you tuning in, Ian! :)

  • Buffer continues to blow me away!

    I had tweeted Courtney a while back because suddenly, I wasn’t getting Open blog posts. When she told me (and the rest of the Twitter world, I’m sure) about the change, I was even more about Buffer.

    Nicole and Courtney, I wish both of you the very best. g

    I’ll be excited to continue learning about a transparent company that is highly successful, through a slightly different lense.

    • Hey Melissa! Thanks so much for your patience while we got everything aligned! I hope the Open blog will get back to its usual lively pace with Nicole at the helm. :)

    • Thank you so much, Melissa!! :)

  • Wow, exciting times for you both! Thanks and congratulations, again to you both. I hope we’ll hear from Courtney about how the inclusivity work is going. And Nicole, your teases about upcoming post topics and the possibility of guest post opportunities keep me eager for what’s next.

    I’ll throw out one that may resonate with both of you: as I mentioned to Courtney when she announced her inclusivity work, I’m pulling together a post on the value of age diversity to an organization, with a focus on the strengths older team members add.

    If the topic seems like a fit, do you have any pitch guidelines for guest authors?

    • Hey Tom, thanks so much for the encouragement! I’m very keen to share lots about inclusivity. And I can’t wait to read your piece! :) I don’t think we have much in the way of pitch guidelines for guest writers, but this topic absolutely sounds in line with our culture and the kind of content we’d love to share!

    • +1 to everything Courtney says, Tom! :) Thank you so much and I’m really looking forward to your post!

      Also jotting down a note for thinking over some guidelines that might help for future pitches! :) Thank you again!

  • Congrats to both of you! The future topics sound awesome and important to overall conversations in tech. Look forward to continuing to follow along!

  • Glenda Turner

    Welcome, Nicole. I know you will shine. We have talked about the importance of vocabulary in other posts. Passing this along for your files. Courtney, I hope you enjoy it, too.

    • Oooh thank you so much for sharing that link, Glenda! Checking it out now! Thank you also for your kind welcome and encouraging words! So grateful for you! :)

      • Glenda Turner

        You are so welcome! I’m Buffer’s biggest fan!

  • Congratulations on your new role, Nicole, yay! I’m so glad that we’ll get to see your face more often in this neck of the woods. You’ve been missed! :)

    I really enjoyed your last post about your time away BTW… I just remembered that I forgot to leave a comment. D’oh!

    And kudos to Courtney on such a great job of managing the blog over the past year. The torch has been passed from one amazing leader to another. Onwards and upwards, ladies! *insert virtual pound*

    • THEA!!! Hearing from you always makes my day; thank you so much for your wonderful warmth and positivity. It has been such a blast to get to know you through the Open blog and I know Nicole will have a special relationship with you as well. And I will still log lots of time here, trust! :)

  • Ajay Kumar Jain

    Congratulations Nicole! Wish you all the best.

  • Susan Basterfield

    This is great Nicole – can’t wait to see how this community approach manifests – really looking forward to learning with you – love to chat about our work at Enspiral

  • Congratulations to you both on your new roles! The increased frequency of blog posts here sounds really awesome. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next!

  • Awesome to hear of your new role, Nicole! I’ve loved reading Courtney’s post and was curious to learn how her new role will develop at Buffer – congratulations to you both! Buffer blog has become my daily dose of inspiration, thank you & all Bufferoos for sharing thoughts & learnings!

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