Here at Marco, we often talk about culture and why it matters for teams — culture has evolved beyond ping pong tables and pizza lunches, and experiences are at the forefront. So, it goes without saying that building a strong culture internally at Marco is always high on our priority list. We’re proud to have such a talented group of individuals working to bring extraordinary experiences to teams.
In this Culture Curators blog, we’re chatting with Court Roberts — Marco’s DEI and L&D Lead.
Introducing Court Roberts
Los Angeles-based Court Roberts is leading the DEI and belonging initiatives at Marco as well as the learning and development strategy. Her work also touches on host excellence - Court helps to identify what makes Marco Experiences unique and ensures that all of our hosts are held to high standards. Court has designed and facilitated hundreds of in-person and digital experiences throughout her career focused on helping create more inclusive workplaces.
Her work is focused on experiential learning and the power of belonging — both things we deeply believe in at Marco. Besides being an incredible force within the Marco team, Court also hosts two experiences with Marco — The Art of Listening and Balance and Boundaries.
What drew you to Marco?
I had a company that I ran with my best friend for 5 years that combined mindfulness practices, offsites, retreats, and more. The whole time that I was working on that project, I couldn’t help but think that there needed to be better experiences for teams — ways to gather that were fun, but also inclusive, interactive, and genuinely interesting. Something beyond just going to a baseball game or getting drinks!
I always hoped this type of company would be created, and that there could be a way to bring a wide range of world-class facilitators under one umbrella. One day I saw my friend Oliver, Marco’s GTM & Supply Lead, post about Marco, and couldn’t believe that it was real! I immediately contacted Marco to learn more about their plans for DEI, how they’re working to create belonging, what they’re doing for remote teams, and more. It was a huge relief to find out that a company like Marco that existed — something brand-forward with lots of thought and intention behind the platform.
What's your vision for the future of culture in the workplace?
The future of culture is relationships and people. It was actually sort of beautiful during the pandemic when everyone had to join Zoom calls and you were able to see people’s backgrounds into their homes — there was a sense of intimacy and permission to not be perfect. Maybe your kid would even walk behind you during your Zoom call. We were invited to be human and had a real glimpse of the person behind the work.
If you’re working for 40, 50, or 60 hours per week, you need to know the people that you’re working with. We need those human moments to remind ourselves that we’re not robots and that we have innate value in so many ways — apart from what we can do on a computer.
One of the experiences that you facilitate at Marco is all about setting healthy boundaries in the workplace. What does this have to do with the future of culture?
This is the moment to get creative about how we work in a healthy and meaningful way. There are several studies showing that people were actually working more during covid, especially because the boundaries between home and office were blurred. Now more than ever, it’s important to know — how do we set healthy boundaries and protect ourselves from burnout?
It’s really important that we are able to access relational support at work. Work happens for eight hours a day, sometimes more. And, if I’m talking to you more than I’m talking to my partner or kids, I need to feel like there’s something in it for me. I need to be seen, heard and valued. It’s all about fostering physical, emotional, and mental wellbeing — and viewing these aspects as exponential multipliers of our work output.
What's your quick tip for teams looking to create better culture?
One super accessible action you can take is to spend 10 mins of your next meeting to connect as humans. Take a look at your calendar, find a meeting that already exists, and find a way to add 10 minutes or reduce the agenda to accommodate this exercise. You can use a question as a prompt, Google exercises for team connection, or just chat — it doesn’t really matter. The purpose is intentional time for connection. As valuable as offsites and retreats are, you can still get a lot done in 10 minutes and start to make a difference.