Yesterday was my last day at Etsy…and what a day it was! I feel like all the love I sent out into the community came back to me tenfold. There were many tears (sometimes from those I least expected it!), kind words, well wishes, big hugs (and repeat hugs), posts and even a standing ovation.
At Etsy, when an engineer leaves, he (I say he, because I believe it has only been ‘he’s’ so far) shares what he’s learned working at Etsy in a “last lecture”. The day I sent my goodbye letter to the company, a few coworkers asked if I was going to give a last lecture. “If the right message comes to me,” I sighed. Honestly, I was so exhausted and emotional, I couldn’t imagine putting together a talk in less than 48 hours to present to some of the most brilliant people I’ve ever known. But on my final day, I woke up at 6 a.m. and filled up 12 post it notes with a last lecture called, “What Sellers Need”. I shared my thoughts on what our community needs from those behind the scene at Etsy. Points 1-3 were specific to the selling experience on Etsy, so I’ll just share 4 & 5 with you.
4. Perks & Benefits
photo by 17 Apart
How lucky I was, and those who work at Etsy are, to have such an inspiring and supportive work environment. From Etsy’s Job page: “At Etsy we love our bikes, enjoy company-paid health benefits, generous time off, and Eatsy, our weekly locally sourced company meal.”
Wouldn’t it be wonderful, magical, radical, if those who were the most passionate about the site, and took the biggest risks didn’t have to worry about outrageous medical bills? What if all 800,000 Etsy sellers could meet up and take a ski trip? What if they had someone to lean on when they felt beaten down (Etsy’s Sarah Starpoli, and now also Katie Rose, have always been there to give a hug, an aspirin, a piece of advice), someone that was there every single day? Or share ideas with a group of smart and lovely group of people over a beautifully, crafted meal?
I challenged the near 100 Etsy Admin in the room to think about what they can do to make something like this happen.
5. The Best You
I was getting choked up and had to read off my notes for this last part, “The Etsy community needs you to be happy and open minded. The you that gets enough sleep, enough sex, enough family time, enough reflection time, the most aimless bike ride time, some time filled with laughter. The best, most fearless, most inspired, most PERSONALLY fulfilled version of you.
Only then will they get your most innovative, most challenging, most creative, most inspired, most fearless work.”
I barely got through all that, but thankfully my tears were a little contagious. My heart was literally hurting trying to make room for in all the love coming my way in these moments. If you’re reading, thank you to all the Etsy admin who listened and responded with love. (And to Vanessa, who tried to chain me to the podium to keep me from leaving.)
My first day as a non-Etsy Admin was quite interesting! I think I will tell you about it, but maybe not for a few days. Tune back in.