Instant Teams Success Stories: Meet Ariane

Meet our Business Analyst, Ariane.

Ariane is a military spouse, a working mom, and a key member of our Customer Success team. We’re thrilled to share her story!

Ariane’s Remote Work Journey

As an Army spouse, Ariane juggled frequent moves, deployments, and child care. It made it difficult to find a job in her career field, and despite working with a recruiter, Ariane needed help finding meaningful, full-time employment. 

She connected with Instant Teams two years ago through the Military Spouse Corporate Career Network. Ariane participated in a virtual hiring event and accepted a full-time position as a Qualifying Guide. 

She quickly progressed within her remote team and was promoted to a Team Lead and, most recently, to a Business Analyst – Customer Experience. In her new role, Ariane provides business insights and creates optimization strategies for Instant Teams’ clients and internal teams. She’s the first Business Analyst on our corporate team.

“She has demonstrated a strong business acumen and a relentless focus on data to form strategies that improve account performance,” says Ariane’s supervisor Amy Price, VP of Customer Experience. “She uses numbers to tell a story, and she’s able to provide critical insights that help us manage our business even better.”

Ariane says she could never have anticipated this kind of role after gaps in employment due to military life. She appreciates the flexibility and the ability to leverage her extensive accounting background.

“The remote work opportunity here at Instant Teams has positively impacted me and my family,” says Ariane. “I can continue to develop and grow my career within the company despite all of the PCS moves. I finally get to have the career progression and longer tenure that I have been searching for within a company.”

Ariane’s advice for fellow military spouses looking for remote work?

“Don’t give up! Give it a chance, and say ‘yes’ to the interview.”

Want to learn more about Ariane’s story? Check out Working Nation’s spotlight on Instant Teams, featuring Ariane!

Employee Spotlight: Meet Anne

Meet Instant Teams’ FIRST employee, Anne! She has been at Instant Teams since September 2017. Anne is an Army veteran and working parent. 

Anne first met Instant Teams Founder and CEO Liza Rodewald at a veteran hiring event at Fort Drum in New York. She had recently finished her four-year Army contract, where she played the French horn, sang, and worked in Human Resources. Like Liza, Anne was passionate about remote work for military spouses.

Anne’s Remote Work Journey

Several months after their initial meeting, the two reconnected, and Anne was hired as Instant Teams’ first employee as the Director of People Operations.

“Anne helped to build the People Operations department from the ground up at Instant Teams. She is able to organize systems that help to drive efficiency across the organization,” says Liza Rodewald, Instant Teams Founder and CEO. 

She eventually transitioned into her current role as Lead Data and Solutions Analyst. She’s been with Instant Teams through a rebrand, early pitch competitions, and a successful Series A funding. Anne is a natural problem solver and passionate about finding solutions and narratives within data. She’s a lifelong learner and recently earned a Master of Education degree. 

“She possesses an innate ability to see gaps, automate systems, and works daily with an adaptability to allow refinement and improvement in business development and procedures,” says Erica McMannes, Instant Teams Founder and Chief People & Community Officer. 

As a veteran, remote work has been extremely important to Anne.

“During my time as a transitioning veteran, I really appreciated that, with access to remote work, the location of my workplace was one less new thing to manage,” says Anne. “Even now, I love the flexibility to manage my health and wellness when it fits into my day.”

Though she’s been working remotely for more than 5 years, Anne regularly adapts her remote routine to find what works best for her. 

“It’s been a learning process, and I don’t know that I could say that I’m done modifying how I work,” says Anne. She stresses the importance of setting strong work-life boundaries and places an emphasis on evolving her work routine as needed. 

We’re so thankful for Anne and her determination. Instant Teams wouldn’t be the same without her!

Instant Teams Founders Make Annual “MIGHTY 25” Military Influencer List

We are still on cloud nine after the incredible relaunch of the Military Influencer Conference! (In this case, what happened in Vegas is NOT staying in Vegas!)

Each year, We Are The Mighty honors 25 outstanding individuals who have demonstrated exemplary work within the extended military community. 

The MIGHTY 25 Gala took place on Friday, October 28, at the Military Influencer Conference. After a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, MIC returned to Las Vegas and once again served as the largest gathering of influential leaders in the military space. 

Our Founders, Liza Rodewald and Erica McMannes, had the distinct honor of making the annual “MIGHTY 25” list. Other winners include John Perez, Head of Military & Veteran Affairs at Johnson & Johnson; Remi Adeleki, bestselling author, actor, filmmaker, speaker, and activist; Tony Wells, Senior Vice President of Marketing at Verizon; Lindsey Streeter, Senior Vice President of Global Military Affairs at Bank of America; and Lt. Amanda Lee, United States Navy Blue Angel Fighter Pilot.

Along with the MIGHTY 25 presentation, the gala also highlighted the winners of multiple pitch contests for veterans, service members, and military spouse founders. The Veteran Fund, an investor of Instant Teams, demonstrated their support of the military spouse and veteran community through their $100K check for 1st place winner, Pixly, led by Founder & CEO, Lee Mills,  and a special investment in Spouse-ly, led by Founder & CEO Monica Fullerton.  

The gala celebration was a huge win for our entire military community and raised awareness of military spouse employment and entrepreneurship. Special guests included Representative Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) and Travis Wilson of the Green Beret Foundation

“Erica and I are so passionate about the military community and are humbled to be honored alongside our peers,” says Liza. “We know how vital military spouse employment is to military families, and we’re determined to improve the financial stability of the military community with meaningful remote careers and legitimate employment advocacy.” 

There’s something so energizing about connecting in person with the military community. To all the employees, customers, partners, and community members who stopped by to say hello at MIC, thank you! We left Vegas recharged, energized, and ready to get back to work!

Congratulations to the MIGHTY 25 Class of 2022 – being surrounded by all of you was inspiring. We can’t wait to see what you accomplish in the next year!

Instant Teams Makes Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Honor Roll

We are thrilled to announce that Instant Teams made the Women’s Business Enterprise Center (WBEC) DE&I Honor Roll! This award acknowledges our work this year to enhance Instant Teams’ 2022 DEIB initiatives and build a comprehensive 2023 DEIB organizational framework that fosters a strong sense of belonging.

WBEC offers a certification process for women business owners and entrepreneurial training and education. As a WBEC Certified company, Instant Teams recognizes the value of partnering with and supporting other female-owned businesses. Because Instant Teams is a primarily military-connected workforce where 88% of the employees identify as female, DEIB is at the heart of everything we do.

“Having a seat at the table – from the classroom to the boardroom – is critical in today’s world.  WBEC-East is thrilled to acknowledge our DE&I Honor Roll companies and business leaders who reserve a seat at the table for EVERY employee and customer in EVERY aspect of their business,” says Elizabeth Walsh, WBEC-East President.

Instant Teams defines DEIB (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging) as:

“An intentional space in the company’s culture and strategy that is always growing and changing in response to our workforce and community. As part of our commitment to our core value of ‘intentional curiosity,’ Instant Teams’ approach to DEIB is comprehensive programming to actively address, improve, and measure tools, strategies, and programs across all departments and facets of our remote work environment. We aim to reduce barriers to access and advance opportunities for untapped talent communities.”

In 2022, Instant Teams launched a variety of DEIB initiatives to create opportunities for our remote workforce to connect, including:

  • Instant Teams’ first corporate-wide DEIB Survey 
  • Intentional content to stimulate conversations around LGBTQ+ allyship, Disability Pride, AAPI heritage, and more
  • A monthly employee Lunch and Learn webinar series hosted by a diverse set of panelists: Click here to see past events.
  • Asynchronous Community Impact Groups
  • Instant Teams’ first “Instant Impact Day” in honor of Juneteenth 
  • Financial partnerships that have resulted in more than $10,000 in charitable donations to our community partners at Esposas Military Hispanas USA and the Modern Military Association of America 

This WBEC DE&I Honor Roll Award is an opportunity for our Instant Teams’ community to celebrate what we’ve accomplished so far and reflect on what more we can do to best serve our employees. There is still a lot of work that needs to be done. As you, our valued community members, celebrate this milestone with us, let’s also stay diligent in practicing the intentional curiosities that create a communal sense of belonging and organizational change. 

For everyone who has contributed your time and feedback towards getting Instant Teams’ 2022 DEIB initiatives up and running – we thank you! This award is for you!

Employee Spotlight: Meet Katrina

Meet one of our employees, Katrina! Katrina joined Instant Teams two years ago and currently works as an administrative assistant on two different accounts. 

She’s a proud Navy spouse and loves to bake, sew, and craft. Originally from Indiana, Katrina and her family are currently stationed in Guam. As a busy mom of three, Katrina appreciates that her remote role allows her the flexibility she needs to take care of her family.  

Katrina’s remote work journey

Katrina’s degree is in hospitality management, and she has previous experience in banking and medical billing. In January 2020, Katrina and her family moved from Virginia to Guam.

“It was a huge transition!” says Katrina. “It is very hard to find a job here, especially something that is flexible enough for me to be there for our kids since my husband’s schedule is a little crazy. ”

Even when they are scattered around the globe, Katrina understood the power of community that military spouses offer one another. “We moved overseas and knew no one. It takes a little while to create your village at new duty stations,” says Katrina. “Don’t be afraid to ask for help because there’s always someone there that can at least steer you in the right direction.”

So when Katrina started looking for remote job opportunities, a fellow military spouse suggested Instant Teams. After learning more, Katrina created an account with Instant Teams and quickly landed a position as an administrative assistant. While she hadn’t worked remotely before, Katrina was eager to learn and jumped right in.

“The client and I hit it off, and I have been working on her account for almost 2 years. I also have added on a second account that helps give me more hours, but works great with my schedule,” says Katrina. “I love the ability to help contribute to our family financially but also be there for our kids.”

With her position, Katrina has been able to add to her resume, focusing on skills like time management, organization, and bookkeeping. Her advice to her fellow remote workers? Put yourself out there. 

 “Don’t be afraid to try something new, or step out of your comfort zone.”