Remote-First Culture: Promoting autonomy and avoiding micromanagement

Diogo de Miranda
April 3, 2024

Vinta was not initially designed as a remote-first company. Our initial structure was carefully crafted to maximize personal interactions in a workspace that encouraged professional growth and casual exchanges. The heart of this dynamic was our common area—a vibrant hub for relaxation, brainstorming, and spontaneous meetings over coffee or even a beer.

However, the onset of the pandemic abruptly shifted this setup. The unimaginable health crisis led to lockdowns and social distancing, disrupting our traditional workflow, which heavily relied on frequent, face-to-face communication. This posed critical questions: How would our teams function when physically separated? Could we maintain our close-knit team dynamics without our physical meeting spaces?

Faced with these challenges, Vinta transitioned to a 100% remote operation. This article explores how we navigated this transition implemented changes, and why we now believe a remote-first model is the future of work.

Fostering Connections with Gather Town

Vinta virtual office at Gather Town

As Vinta transitioned to a fully remote structure, we embraced Gather Town, a virtual platform that recreates the dynamics of a physical office online. This tool has been crucial in maintaining our company culture, deeply rooted in personal relationships and overall well-being. Gather Town has enabled seamless real-time interactions among team members throughout Brazil, significantly enhancing teamwork and strengthening interpersonal connections. Its features, designed for collaborative and individual workspaces, have successfully closed the gap between traditional and remote work settings, cultivating a robust sense of community and belonging. 

The platform's intuitive, game-like environment injects fun into daily activities, aligning perfectly with Vinta's commitment to a balanced and engaging remote work experience. 

For a deeper insight into our journey with Gather Town, we invite you to read a specific article detailing our experiences and the benefits we've realized.

Adapting to a Remote-First Environment

Concerned about the potential negative impacts of remote work on our team's dynamics and productivity, we turned to our core belief: amazing people create unique products. This belief guided our adaptations over the last decade, all made possible by our dedicated team. Our focus shifted towards enhancing our employees' ability to work effectively, regardless of location.

Vinta has always been very critical about how we use people's time in the company and how we can help them be more productive and efficient. The power of an explicit, concise activity, with definitions of success and a well-defined delivery format, has always been evident. 

To adapt to a 100% remote-first approach, we needed to refresh our methods of ensuring this in a remote environment, refining how we used to do things. From this, we have come up with three different definitions of how our remote-first model should look like:

Redefining Our Remote-First Model with Core Principles

From our experiences, we've distilled our remote-first approach into three core principles:

1. Embracing Asynchrony

Early on, we recognized that merely being remote wasn't sufficient—we needed to adopt a model that embraced asynchronous communication. This approach allows team members to manage their tasks in a way that best suits their workflow, enhancing productivity without the confines of synchronous schedules. Although collaborative activities like pair programming, one-on-one meetings, and brainstorming sessions remain valuable, we've minimized mandatory, prolonged meetings to prevent fatigue and inefficiency.

2. Documentation Is Key

We've shifted much of our collaborative efforts into comprehensive documentation. By transparently recording discussions and decisions, we ensure that all team members have access to the information they need when they need it. This shift from frequent meetings to documented insights helps democratize knowledge across the organization and reduces the reliance on real-time updates, allowing for more flexible work arrangements.

3. Minimizing Micromanagement

Our new model moves away from micromanagement, emphasizing autonomy and trust. We've eliminated daily check-ins, instead encouraging team members to report progress as needed. This change fosters a sense of responsibility and self-management, allowing employees to focus more on the quality of their output rather than the frequency of updates.

Flexibility and Work-Life Balance

A remote-first environment is only enabled in a sustainable and lasting way through a balance between working hours and resting hours that are healthy for people. Moving to a 100% remote model provides the opportunity for a life that recognizes and respects the place of work in the routine but is not strictly guided by fixed work hours.

So, we encouraged the people at Vinta to build a sensible work routine. This included flexible working hours, a choice of work location, and monthly support to maintain their remote working infrastructure.

Not relying on timing enriches the quality of everything we do. In our experience, most people working at Vinta are at home and share a roof. We work to facilitate the life we have with them. The 100% remote model favors a better balance of hours for people, giving them more time to enjoy a higher quality of life.


Vinta's adoption of a remote-first culture has sustained our operations during challenging times and uncovered numerous advantages of this model. We have created an environment where autonomy and productivity thrive by reducing micromanagement, supporting asynchronous work, and enabling flexible work arrangements. Our commitment to refining these processes continues as we aim to help our team's well-being and productivity better, making remote-first a necessity and a strategic advantage for the future of work.

Read "Autonomy: Keeping Engagement during a Crisis" to learn more about our culture.