Hey, I'm Dan! I invest in startups at Madrona and write the DL, a weekly newsletter about tech in the Pacific Northwest

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How to Remote Work

Fast Company wrote an excellent article about the asynchronous, all-remote work style at Gitlab and their (amazing) 7,100 page employee handbook that makes remote work work.


The handbook is all public (like, the whole thing is on the internet), and there is a ton of fantastic information inside. For example…

  • if you ever wondered how the CEO of a $2.75B startup manages his calendar, just go the “CEO Meeting Cadence” section of the handbook
  • if you ever wanted to learn what DevOps means, there are in-depth descriptions of all the responsibilities of GitLab’s DevOps teams
  • if you want to see how GitLab calculates compensation and values options, it’s all in there as well


So much good stuff in the handbook. You should definitely click around. But here are some of the highlights from the article as well:

  • GitLab has 1,300 employees in 67 countries, across nearly every time zone. They didn’t intend to be an all-remote company, but one day people stopped showing up to the office, and “we never talked about it”
  • The new employee onboarding process is a 100 step “issue” (to-do list) that covers everything from setting up 2FA to scheduling a “coffee chat” with a random coworker
  • Meetings are optional (though many meetings are livestreamed on YouTube), and in lieu of meetings, employees are encouraged to write and document everything publicly (hence the 7K page handbook)
  • GitLab is preparing to go public soon, but they are committed to continue sharing information publicly


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