Companies around the world have spent the last year learning how to manage a remote workforce as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe. While many are looking forward to life getting back to normal, the KaiNexus team is looking to go in a different direction.
“Our Austin office lease expired while our team was working fully remote last summer, and we realized that we had a golden opportunity to finally take the leap we’ve been dreaming about for years,” said KaiNexus CEO Greg Jacobson. Jacobson first visited Antarctica back in 2012, where he fell in love with the solitude and expansive views. “There’s room to think out here.”
That’s why, come summer 2021, the KaiNexus team is leaving behind the sweltering heat of Texas summers in exchange for the cooler climate of Antarctica. The scouting team recently visited the continent to plan the new office and secure the appropriate government clearances.
“Getting permission to join the scientists in Antarctica was quite the legal headache, but I’m happy to report that the i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed,” said KaiNexus COO Matt Paliulis. Construction has begun on the new building, which will be painted KaiNexus Blue so no one gets lost in a whiteout.
The team is eager to get back into an office. “We’ve spent a year apart, only seeing each other on Zoom,” said Matt Banna, KaiNexus Account Director. “We’ve missed each other a lot, and have unanimously decided to live and work together away from the distractions of the outside world.” Banna is most looking forward to morning huddles (for warmth).
“We’re all so excited to transition from being remote employees to being a remote company,” said Account Manager Elysse Landrum, one of three KaiNexus employees to have been hired fully remotely during the pandemic. Other Account Managers are also excited to make the move; Taylor Edwards is looking forward to the lack of time zones on the continent, making it easier to coordinate with her international customers.
Everyone on the KaiNexus team has their own reasons for being excited about the ice-o-lated continent. KaiNexus Support Manager Brittany Currier has been petitioning for an office pet for a while now, and is looking forward to the waddle of penguins the company plans to acquire to keep morale high. Meanwhile, Demand Generation Manager Danielle Yoon is looking forward to caring for the plants the company will bring to ensure staff have access to greenery.
“The winter storm we had last month really prepared our team for what’s to come. We’ve seen how far we can push our bodies, and we’re confident this move will challenge us in new and exciting ways,” says Training and Enablement Manager Adam Darnell. Darnell spent a week living in his sleeping bag during the March power outage that ravaged Texas and feels confident he can survive anything the South Pole throws his way.
The development team would like to reassure customers that service will continue uninterrupted, in spite of the extreme weather. “All I need is high-speed internet, somewhere to live, my laptop, oxygen, food, and water, and I’m good to go,” says Adam Hamed, the company’s most senior developer.