Little work, loads of praise. Too many snacks. This is how I feel about some of our Aha! teammates. Yep, I am calling these co-workers out — the ones who seemingly lie around all day. I have even spotted a few taking a nap during a video meeting. But I cannot possibly stay mad. How could I? They are simply too lovable.
As you can probably guess, I am talking about our pets.
Aha! is a fully remote company, so we work where we are happiest — often right next to our favorite animal friends.
Remote work certainly qualifies Aha! as one of the world’s most pet-friendly tech companies. Think about it. Pets are welcomed in our Aha! “offices” at any time. Every critter gets their own treats and toys. And our human teammates can snuggle or take their furry co-workers outside whenever they need to.
Unlike a co-located office environment, you do not have to worry about animals disturbing someone’s allergies or that your pet might be frightened in a new environment. In fact, the reverse is true — pets can help reduce your worries. Research says that they lower our stress hormones as well as our risk of cardiovascular disease.
I have written before about Aha! being the world’s most pet-friendly tech company — giving readers a look at our furry business partners. But our team has grown rapidly since then.
So, it is time to introduce a few more of our teammates’ pets and how these creatures inspire us to work:
“Ema is a good reminder to have a goal and stick to it. For her, the goal is to nap as much as possible. She has a few locations where this happens — on the couch, on my lap, and on her favorite rug (as pictured below). She loves anywhere that has a window so she can watch the birds and chipmunks outdoors. Even when I let her outside to play, she will find a nice warm spot in the sun to continue working towards her napping goals.” — Julie Price, Customer Success
“Duke is a Bernese mountain dog with a lot of growth ahead of him — he is only a quarter of the size he will become. Working from home gives me the chance to spend more time with him, whether he is sleeping at my feet or we are taking a walk together at lunch. It has been amazing to watch him double in size over his first few weeks. And I am glad I get a front-row seat as he continues to grow from playful puppy to loving dog.” — Shawn Zenz, Customer Success
Cash and Monet
“Our home already had plenty of excitement — our 1-year-old son, who just started walking, and our 4-year-old dog Maya Luna. So my wife and I figured it was time to add more excitement to the mix. (Plus, Maya Luna was asking for a furry friend.) We adopted the Cash-Monet combo from local shelters, and the two could not be more different. Monet is a diva that spends her days lounging and Cash is a super-social tornado of energy. Both make excellent work companions. Monet will lay by me while I work, while Cash is always good for a playful lunchtime break.” — Jamey Iaccino, People Success
“Taji (pronounced ta-hi) means ‘number one’ in Maori, the native language of my home country New Zealand. And I like to think she lives up to her name. She is certainly the number-one most curious cat I have known. She always gets up and follows me around the house, no matter what I am doing. And she has even worked out how to open all the drawers so she can hide in them. She is a daily reminder to stay curious and work hard to solve complicated problems.” — Jeremy Geros, Engineering
“Maggie was actually raised in an office when she was a puppy. At my old company, I used to carry her in my hoodie and give presentations with her head poking out. We get to spend even more together now that I am at Aha! We like taking breaks at lunchtime to go to the park, where she can see her friends and chase the ball for a bit.” — Phil Wilt, Engineering
Eddie and Chomper
“We have a menagerie of pets — two cairn terriers, one bearded dragon, and 19 fish. So, I never feel alone working from home. Our bearded dragon, Chomper, sometimes hangs out on my shoulder as I work, serving as a very calming influence. And then there is Eddie, one of our terriers. He is full of energy — running around the garden, chasing squirrels. Every so often, he flops on the ground for a short break. Whenever I see him under the table (tongue out and happy) it serves as a nicer reminder that even the most energetic workers sometimes need a break.” — Claire George, Marketing
“Who says remote workers spend all day in their pajamas? I like to think my basset hound Winston breaks this false stereotype. This photo was taken after my daughters dressed him up for the day. He looks like he is ready to hop on some important customer calls. (Or maybe just settle in for a nice, long snooze.)” — Madeleine Black, Customer Success
“This is Rusty, the youngest and friendliest of my three cats. She actually runs towards the door when the bell rings (unlike the others, who scatter to the far corners of the house). She even joins me for lunch each day. Here she is at the table, ready for a lunchtime chat. She likes to be present whenever food is involved! But Rusty’s friendliness is also a good reminder to reach out and chat with teammates that I do not regularly work with.” — Tyler Knappe, Engineering
“Mac spends most of his days in my office, either sleeping in his kennel or laying in his bed. He is very good about staying quiet while I work, with one exception: his bell. We trained him to ring a bell so he can let us know when he needs to go outside. I can rely on it ringing at least once an hour at different levels of intensity. On the bright side, it usually indicates the hour is ending and I need to move on to the next meeting or task. It is also a reminder to not be shy about speaking up when you need something.” — Scott Goldblatt, Customer Success
Moonpie, Graham, and Pancake
“My dogs always inspire me to be a better teammate. Moonpie has been with us the longest, so he likes to show the younger puppies his best skills, like how to jump in the pool. And when Pancake (our littlest) cannot reach a toy, the big ones will get it for her. The three of them play hard, and when one of them gets out of line, they let the others know. It is a well-functioning three-dog team. And yes, they even like napping together.” — Jessica Groff, Marketing
Corn Flake and Fancy Pants
“Here is something you might not realize about chickens: They are pretty funny! Ours go crazy when we feed them spaghetti noodles. They will run around the yard with the noodles flying all over the place. (As you can imagine, it is a chaotic sight.) We also have rescue dogs who really respect the roosters. It is funny to see a 5-pound rooster stand up to a 120-pound lab… and the lab simply walks the other way. Working from home gives me the freedom to care for these animals, which would not be possible if I were in an office and commuting hours each day in traffic.” — Perry Hurtt, Customer Success
Pets can be some of the most loyal and attentive co-workers (albeit a tad lazy at times).
But we do not love our pets for their work ethic — we love them for what they bring into our lives. Our furry friends remind us to stay curious, work towards our goals, and tap into our playful side. And of course, they are always happy to show us the benefits of a nice, long snooze.
We would love to see a picture of your pet working hard. Add your pet’s name, favorite thing to do, and a picture as a comment.