Company Culture Cookbook Top Recipe: AMA Sessions
The Enplug Company Culture Cookbook has 33 Can’t Fail Recipes for a Happy Team. Below is Recipe #13: “Host AMA Sessions with Resident Experts.” It’s best for teams of 30 or more.
AMA sessions (“Ask Me Anything”) are a popular Q&A format from the website Reddit.com. Participants have ranged from President Barack Obama to Bill Gates to Ashton Kutcher. Readers submit questions, and the participants answer them.
We interviewed Matt Hoffman, VP of People at DigitalOcean, on their culture and mission. Their CEO does bi-weekly AMAs “to ensure that all our employees feel heard and remain connected to the business. We always close out the sessions with public peer recognition.” See the full interview here.
Once a month, designate a team lead or expert to host an AMA for the whole company. Send out a survey two weeks before the session where people can submit their questions. The two-week buffer gives teammates the chance to prepare their responses and organize the presentation logically.
Every single question should be answered. (Hence the “anything.”) Don’t cherry-pick your favorite questions, or else the session loses its impact and value to the rest of the team. Let your team know every question will be answered so they know to ask meaningful questions and come to the Q&A session expecting to get a thoughtful response.
To set the tone, let the CEO kick off the series, making sure the presentation is visually compelling and in-depth. It will likely spark more ideas, so once the presentation is finished, open the floor to more questions.
Encourage the team to participate, and remind them that no questions are off-limits—it’s a learning experience.
Image source: Thegatesnotes on YouTube
Enplug digital signage software was co-founded by CEO Nanxi Liu and CTO Tina Denuit-Wojcik in 2012 to enable organizations to use customized real-time streaming content to create engaging external and internal communications.