As Gem continues to grow, so does the number of phenomenal people on our team! Our #MeettheGems series showcases Gems from a variety of different teams and locations to get to know more about them and the impact of their work.
This week we sat down with Cathy Lee (she/her/hers), Head of Workplace Experience, to learn more about her day to day impact and what she loves about life at Gem.
Why did you join Gem?
I joined Gem because I was truly inspired by our People team leaders/ executive leadership, and felt ready to make a bigger impact at a company that is growing quickly.
I met Heather Dunn (Chief People Officer at Gem) on the day of my panel interviews, and after a 45 min conversation I immediately knew I wanted to work with her. I knew I would learn and grow so much under her management and mentorship, and it was an opportunity I was desperately looking for—it was kismet.
I’ve learned so much about Workplace Experience over the years, specifically how great companies cultivate culture and community. I was ready to lead a team and put into action the craft that I’ve honed over the past 11 years.
Our mission is to help companies hire great teams—what does that mean to you?
Great teams are made up of diverse opinions and backgrounds, but it’s not always easy finding that talent pool. Tools like Gem that make this easier should be the first investment every team makes. Because again, hiring is one of the hardest parts of the job. It’s a never-ending cycle that you really need to get right in order to have a great team.
Tell us more about your role and the impact you are making.
I am Head of Workplace Experience here at Gem. We are a powerful team of three, including a Remote Employee Experience Manager and an Office Manager based in our San Francisco headquarters. I often think when people hear that I lead Workplace Experience, they think my job consists of putting on events and making sure people have lunch. It does consist of that…but it is actually so much more.
Coming to Gem, I knew that it was a smaller start-up that was maturing its processes and really getting ready for scale and hypergrowth. That’s such a great point to start at any company — it means I get to come in and see what has already been done, what is meaningful to the team, and then help create processes with intention.
It’s been about five months since I started, and since then, I’ve been able to lead our team in coordinating an all-company gathering, implementing an all-day no-internal-meetings day, kicking off a project on streamlining our internal communications systems, and more.
Looking forward, we have a lot of amazing projects coming up that will impact our culture and growth. Our goal is to empower Gems to do their best work through the creation of human-centric environments and programs that foster connection and community, and I feel like we’re well on our way to accomplishing it.
What would you tell someone who is considering joining Gem?
When I started at Gem, I asked so many people how they would describe the company culture. I got so many responses that touched on kindness, thoughtfulness, and intentionality, and I would say that aptly describes the people and leadership on our team.
This is one of the most diverse groups of people I have worked with, and I feel like we are positioned for greatness. If you want to surround yourself with amazing and passionate individuals, and have meaningful and impactful work, come be a part of what we are building.
Rapid Fire Questions
What would your superpower be if you were a superhero?
I would fly or be able to teleport. I have horrible flight anxiety and I love to travel — it just seems like the most practical superpower for my lifestyle.
What is your favorite Gem company value?
Transparency. I think it’s so important when it comes to building trust and accountability.
What is your most used emoji?
🤣 The rolling-on-the-floor laughing face is by far my most used emoji. I like to find humor in everything! If you know me, you know that I’m always laughing about something, because really, life is too short not to be laughing until your stomach aches and your cheeks hurt.
What is your favorite breakfast food?I love a savory breakfast. On a cold day, all I want is a warm bowl of rice with a couple of soft-boiled eggs and some coconut aminos, furikake, and chili oil over everything. Oh yeah, and a sprinkle of green onions, please!
Are you interested in being a part of #LifeAtGem? Head to our careers site to learn more about our culture and what it’s like to work at Gem. We can’t wait to hear from you!
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