Karinna Briseno’s Expertise at Buffer

Meet Karinna Briseno, a Technical Advocate at Buffer who redefines success by balancing private progress, psychological well being, and profession accomplishments.

With a four-day workweek, she proves you possibly can have thrilling roles, a digital nomad way of life, and even time for off-the-grid hobbies. Dive into Karinna’s distinctive journey at Buffer.

Thanks for becoming a member of me for Buffer Diaries, Karinna. When you might please introduce your self along with your identify, what you do at Buffer, and the place you’re at the moment situated.

Aloha! My identify is Karinna Briseno and I work throughout the Buyer Expertise Staff on the Buyer Advocacy workforce. I work intently with product, engineering, and advocacy groups to assist enhance the general expertise for purchasers utilizing our platform. I at the moment reside in California, and I‘m from Hawaii.

When and the way did you get began working at Buffer?

I have been at Buffer for seven years, and it began again in 2016 once I was in school working part-time as a social media supervisor. I used Buffer to handle my shoppers’ social media, and someday, I stumbled upon the hiring web page whereas searching the weblog.

Intrigued by their work tradition, I utilized for a Buyer Advocate function simply after graduating. The interview course of was pleasant, and I had conversations with a number of beautiful Buffer teammates. Quick-forward seven years later, I am nonetheless fortunately working right here!

What did you research in school, and what has stored you at Buffer for seven years?

I studied enterprise and advertising and marketing in school. I’ve stayed with Buffer for a number of causes through the years, one in every of which is the chance to develop and evolve with the corporate.

I began exploring coding and engineering about three years in the past, and Buffer has been extremely supportive. They even paid for my engineering boot camps. Having the ability to apply these expertise instantly in my function and positively impression our clients has been actually rewarding. The assist I’ve acquired, particularly as a lady getting into the engineering subject, has made my expertise at Buffer really distinctive.

How has your function at Buffer advanced over time? Have you ever moved between departments like a few of your colleagues?

My function has advanced through the years. Initially, I used to be employed as a Happiness Hero, however the title modified to Buyer Advocate about three or 4 years in the past. I’ve additionally been a part of numerous sub-teams throughout the Advocacy division, together with stay chat and social.

Extra just lately, I shifted to the Escalations workforce, which grew to become a proper sub-team about two years in the past, and my function title modified to Technical Advocate. We work on tickets within the inbox, prioritizing software program bugs, coordinating with product and engineering, and mentoring different buyer advocates.

About six months in the past, my workforce advanced into the Buyer Expertise workforce, the place our sole focus is working intently with the Product, Engineering, Design, and Advocacy groups to enhance the general expertise for Buffer’s clients. It is at all times partaking, and I get to work alongside some sensible colleagues and advocate for our unimaginable clients, which is why I like it.

What particularly made Buffer a sexy place to work while you had been making use of, contemplating you used the app to handle your social media?

What really stood out to me had been Buffer’s values. Over time, they’ve advanced as the corporate and its folks have grown. The principle attraction was not simply the cool app but in addition the chance to work with a workforce making an actual impression and doing one thing particular.

Our price of “Dwelling Smarter, Not Tougher” actually resonated with me because it impressed me to “select to be on the single place on Earth the place you’re the happiest, and most efficient, and also you’re not afraid to search out out the place that’s.” Working at Buffer has made me higher by embracing and actively working in the direction of these values.

Apart out of your work at Buffer, do you could have any aspect initiatives, or how do you spend your days off?

I deliberately keep away from on-line aspect initiatives to keep up a wholesome work-life stability and honor the 40-hour workweek. I get pleasure from spending time outdoor, going to the seashore, and hanging out with my household/mates and canine on my days off.

Having grown up across the ocean, I get pleasure from spending my weekends within the water, paddleboarding, browsing, snorkeling, or scuba diving. I like partaking in off-the-grid actions that preserve me away from my telephone and permit me to get pleasure from my hobbies. I’ve additionally began coaching to grow to be a Pilates teacher as a interest.

How has working at Buffer, with its four-day workweek, distant work, and versatile hours, contributed to your way of life as a digital nomad or traveler?

Working at Buffer has really been life-changing. The four-day workweek permits me to relaxation, recharge, and spend extra time with my household and family members. It gives a much bigger area outdoors of labor to have a satisfying life.

Distant work has given me the flexibleness to form my life round my core values and what’s necessary to me on the time. Primarily based on my priorities, I’ve had the chance to plan strikes to locations like Portugal, Hawaii, and California. Earlier than COVID-19, I deliberate to maneuver to Portugal within the spring of 2020. However, because the pandemic advanced, I felt it was necessary to maneuver nearer to my household, so I packed up my canine and moved again to Hawaii.

Distant work permits us to select our places primarily based on our values (household, mates, or companions) and wishes, a privilege I do not take as a right. There are completely different seasons to distant work, however it primarily gives the liberty to journey as a digital nomad or transfer nearer to household, mates, or a associate. In a phrase, it is life-changing, because it permits us to decide on our location primarily based on what really issues to us. With distant working, we are able to choose our places primarily based on “this AND that” quite than “this OR that.”

It is fascinating the way you select places primarily based on values. Are you able to record the international locations you have labored from or visited whereas at Buffer?

Positive, some locations I’ve labored from embody Madrid, Spain; Singapore; Portugal; Italy, the place I spent a month working in Rome; Hawaii, the place I lived the previous couple of years; California; and New York.

Final yr, I used to be additionally working from Greece for an advocacy workforce meetup, which coincided with my thirtieth birthday. These are the principle ones that come to thoughts, however there could also be extra.

How do you construction your workday and week at Buffer, together with your hours and timezone?

My work schedule has advanced through the years. Final yr, I had a singular four-day workweek, taking Mondays off and dealing from Tuesday to Friday. This yr, I modified my work schedule, and I work Monday- Thursday, utilizing Friday as an additional “overflow” day. I usually begin at 9 am Pacific time and finish round 6 pm. As a part of a small Escalations workforce inside Advocacy, now we have to be conscious of our protection and mission time.

I often allocate about 4 hours per week for engineering duties and initiatives, largely in the direction of the beginning of the week. Tuesdays are meeting-heavy, whereas I give attention to engineering or inbox time on Wednesdays. Thursdays, I primarily work on inbox duties and protection. It is busy however numerous enjoyable.

As a technical advocate, how has your function modified over time in comparison with while you had been a buyer advocate, and are there any particular concerns to your present place?

As a technical advocate, our focus is two-fold: serving to clients guarantee they’ve a fantastic expertise and in addition offering mentorship and assist for Buyer Advocates on the workforce.

We work one-on-one with clients on trickier technical points, troubleshooting, documenting steps, creating bug studies, and serving to prioritize high-impact bugs for upcoming Engineering cycles. We additionally work one-on-one with Advocates, clarifying any confusion and making certain they’ve the mandatory assets to really feel assured dealing with particular points.

As Tech Advocates, we deal with extra high quality assurance initiatives, testing new options previous to launches to make sure a clean expertise for purchasers. There is a higher sense of accountability, scope, and possession in my present function in comparison with once I was a buyer advocate.

Have you ever encountered any distinctive challenges in your function, significantly as a technical advocate working inside a smaller workforce and a four-day workweek?

The most important problem I face is maximizing my time. Having nice concepts is one factor, however managing the time and assets to convey them to fruition, particularly inside a four-day workweek and a smaller workforce, can typically be difficult. We should be conscious of once we step away and give attention to particular duties.

I am primarily pursuing a full-time profession inside a restricted variety of hours every week, which requires dedication and the power to make a big impression inside that point. It is a distinctive problem I’m grateful for, because it permits me to develop and proceed difficult myself.

Having somebody like Mick, an engineer who was initially a buyer advocate and went by means of an analogous course of, serves as a job mannequin and exhibits that it’s doable to attain progress on this manner, though it may not be the best path.

Trying again on seven years, what was one thing that caught you off guard while you first began at Buffer?

The transparency at Buffer undoubtedly caught me off guard at first. I needed to get used to working for a corporation the place anybody might simply discover details about it, like salaries, as an illustration. It took a while to regulate to being extra open about my wage with my family and friends.

After the primary yr, I grew to become extra comfy with this stage of transparency, and now, if somebody asks me about my wage, it isn’t a query that catches me off guard.

What’s your strongest earliest reminiscence of Buffer?

My strongest early reminiscence of Buffer was my first retreat in Madrid. It is recent in my thoughts as a result of I just lately discovered a video from that point. There have been round 80 folks, and we had been working on the Google campus in Madrid. I bear in mind the workforce dinner, the camaraderie, and the sensation of being in the identical room with individuals who had been beforehand simply in a bit of field on my display screen.

Considered one of my favourite recollections was going to a karaoke bar after the workforce dinner. We crowded the small bar, and the entire workforce sang karaoke collectively. These are a few of my fondest recollections at Buffer – not solely working with superb teammates but in addition sharing experiences and feeling like we have identified one another for a very long time.

On the Madrid retreat, I used to be initially nervous about having to be extroverted on a regular basis, as I’m each introverted and extroverted (an ambivert). Nevertheless, I realized it is okay to step away and recharge my batteries, and the workforce understood and welcomed that want.

Some folks consider that it’s a must to sacrifice one side of your life, comparable to your private life, to attain success in one other, comparable to your profession. Given that you’ve a four-day workweek at Buffer and time for actions outdoors of labor, would you say that you have achieved skilled success with out making important sacrifices, though some consider success requires a extra demanding schedule?

I consider the way in which folks outline success can change over time. My definition of success has advanced through the years. After I was youthful, I believed success was decided by cash, hustling, my profession title, {and professional} accomplishments. As I’ve grown older, I’ve come to know that true success in life encompasses private progress, relationships, and prioritizing my psychological well being as properly.

I really feel that I’ve achieved a stage of success in my present state of affairs, however I do know there’s nonetheless extra room for progress. My notion of success has modified, particularly after taking a seven-week sabbatical earlier this yr. I used to be burnt out and realized I wanted to speculate extra power into different areas of my life.

The four-day workweek has helped me discover a higher stability between my private {and professional} lives, and I consider it is doable to attain skilled success with out sacrificing one’s private life.


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