This series highlights two of our passions: our unique company culture and music. Born organically out of a hobby Slack channel, The Sound of InterWorks reveals the music that powers our work and how we share that with others.
When it comes to having a global company, it can be tough to stay connected—really connected—with your coworkers. One of the most valuable tools in this space has been Slack, which is to be expected. It’s a super practical tool for chatting with colleagues no matter where they are (but beware those different time zones). Another way I’ve gotten to know my coworkers better, and actually work toward building real relationships, has been the focus of one of our myriad Slack channels: music.
At InterWorks, it seems there’s a Slack channel for everything. Events. Client projects. Internal teams. Hobbies. And one of the channels I follow most closely is #hobby-music. It’s active on nearly a daily basis, and various channel members will issue challenges for others to share music. These could range from your favorite Christmas music to the best throwback song to start off your weekend.
I’ve discovered tons of new music since I began at InterWorks, in large part due to this Slack channel. But we’ve also created blogs dedicated to our team’s Spotify Wrapped data, and lunch conversations typically reveal whose musical tastes complement yours.
Songs for Broken (and Whole) Hearts
In light of Valentine’s Day, I wanted to share a playlist I compiled last year when our Global Employee Experience Director, Brandi, issued a Valentine’s Day challenge to #hobby-music. Different employees across the organization shared songs in response to this prompt, often providing a bit of explanation behind their picks. There were 18 songs shared total, and I’ve listed them in order of their appearance in the playlist, as well as the given rationale and the relevant team member. The challenge? Share your best love song or best broken heart song. Here’s what we came up with:
- “Into the Mystic” by Van Morrison | Brandi White
- “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston | It’s a love song for a broken heart.
- “Comfortable” by John Mayer | me | When the good thing is gone, and you keep trying to fill the void, but you can’t.
- “No One’s Gonna Love You” by Band of Horses | Jenny Parnell
- “She’s Always a Woman” by Billy Joel | Kirsten Hoffman
- “Always Be My Baby” by Mariah Carey | Kirsten Hoffman | TIE – For the broken heart that’s picking itself back up
- “Best Thing I Never Had” by Beyoncé | Kirsten Hoffman | TIE – For the broken heart that’s picking itself back up
- “Million Dollar Bill” by Middle Brother | When it’s heartbreak
- “You Go Down Smooth” by Lake Street Dive | When it’s love, but it’s a terrible idea
- “In Spite of Ourselves” by John Prine | Brandi White | Crass and sassy love
- “The Night We Met” by Lord Huron | Kirsten Hoffman | When you are contemplating why
- “Hanging On” by Active Child | Garrett Sauls | Because we can’t say goodbye, but we must say goodbye
- “The One That Got Away” by The Civil Wars | Rachel Kurtz | For an angry breakup
- “The Story” by Brandi Carlile | Rachel Kurtz | A sweeter song from a seriously badass lady
- “Second Time” by Bruno Major | Garrett Sauls | When you didn’t notice them before, but now they’re bae.
- “Beautiful” by G. Love & Special Sauce | Marshall Roy
- “I Try” by Macy Gray | Brooks Barth
- “Just Like Heaven” by The Cure
Why Does This Matter?
It’s a cliché, but it’s true: Music is one of those mysterious things that has the power to bring people together in spite of all barriers. It transcends distance and difference to create bonds of understanding between people that may never have had any other common ground. It reaches across people to communicate truths that we don’t know, don’t know how to articulate or refuse to acknowledge.
Technology is like this, too. It builds connections with people, communicates in ways all of us may not fully understand and puts us on the same plane, so we can move forward together. This is something we believe in at InterWorks and commit to pursue and develop among everyone we interact with, from team members and partners to clients and more.
The playlist is embedded below. Feel free to give it a listen this Valentine’s Day, whenever you need to nurse some emotional wounds or anytime you’d like to exult in romantic euphoria. No matter how you feel, there’s a song for that.