I have to say, being part of a virtual team is AWESOME. Not only do I get all the benefits from working from home (from as far as Israel!), but I don’t necessarily miss out on the personal interactions that come from a traditional shared work environment because of Weaving Influence’s collaborative nature. WI is not only a team, its a community, and I am grateful for that.

Needless to say, I was still a bit envious of those team members that were able to get together over the past few weeks in Atlanta, and was very excited to hear about all of the connections made at the Berrett-Koehler marketing workshop in San Francisco where Becky spoke to an outstanding group of authors and marketing professionals.

Here, I have compiled some thoughts from team members who were a part of the in-person 2016 Weaving Influence tour (#WITour2016!).

It was so wonderful to meet some of the team members I work with on a daily basis in person. It was like seeing celebrities or unicorns or fairies… They really do exist! –Whitney Heins, PR Director

Working in a virtual team doesn’t mean you don’t have strong support and collaboration with your co-workers, but it is different.  When we get the opportunity to get together in person, it feels almost like a reunion–even if it’s the first time we’re meeting in person.  The value of these get-togethers is that they deepen our connections with one another and truly solidify our feeling of community.  Meeting with clients in person has the same effect-we get to connect on a deeper level and I think the work is better for it. I wouldn’t trade my virtual job, but I love moments for in-person connection. The balance is what makes successful partnerships and teams. –Christy Kirk, Director of Social Strategy

We have the good fortune to work on a virtual team, which gives us a great deal of flexibility. Thanks to technology, we “see” each other (over video conferences, for example) frequently. When I met Kylah, Whitney, and Christy in person (I had met Becky before), it was an uncanny combination of “this doesn’t feel like a first meeting” and “it’s so great to FINALLY MEET YOU!” There is a special power in looking someone in the eyes (and breaking bread with them, which we did our fair share of on this trip), and I am so grateful that Weaving Influence encouraged us to leave our keyboards and headsets behind in order to spend time together “in real life.” – Paula Kiger, Community Manager

Even though you may meet with and work with a person via video calls, email and chat every day, there’s something about that face to face meeting in real life and sharing real space that can’t be replicated in the virtual world. I was so grateful to have gotten the chance to officially meet co-workers and clients alike in Atlanta. –Kylah Frazier, Project Manager

Becky with our client Charles Vogl

It’s always invigorating to meet face to face with those we work with, especially so in a virtual company such as ours. My wife and I just happened to be passing through Atlanta at the same time as other team members and we met for dinner. Even just a few minutes of face time makes a considerable difference. –John Marcello, Web Developer

“In addition to loving the chance to connect with team and clients face to face, I enjoyed the deep learning and conversation at the BK Workshop.” –Becky Robinson, CEO

I’m still waiting for #WITourMiddleEast. Until then, I can live vicariously through my teammates.

Have a fantastic Friday! I hope you take some time this weekend to connect with friends and loved ones in person.