On December 5, 2018, Tangoe acquired MOBI, the leading managed mobility services company.
On paper, this acquisition made perfect sense for both organizations: For Tangoe, it provided its clients with the immediate benefit of access to the most powerful MMS solution available. For MOBI, it allowed them to bring their award-winning solutions to the global marketplace. Additionally, MOBI’s technology supports Tangoe’s overarching goal: To help customers work smarter every day by making technology work for them.
There’s been much excitement among our employees, as Tangoe and MOBI work together toward achieving true integration. It has created tremendous opportunity for the collective business—and our employees recognize this. However, there’s also been anxiety and uncertainty associated with the acquisition. Change is difficult, and fear is often a product of change. It’s human nature.
In many ways, this acquisition—this coming together of two organizations—was the impetus for this podcast. It was an opportunity for Tangoe to pause, hit the reset button – and move forward supporting all efforts needed to facilitate integration between MOBI and Tangoe.
As a fairly new employee, Tangoe’s end-goal is clear to me: To serve our purpose, to stay true to our vision, and to deliver on our mission. Our purpose is to help organizations work smarter by leveraging technology that solves their TEM and MMS problems. Our vision is to become the global standard for America’s greatest brands. And our mission is to help our customers grow their bottom line.
However, the real success of Tangoe, I believe, is ultimately dependent upon human relationships—of course between the organization and its customers—but more importantly, between the relationships of its own employees. Fortunately, we are now led by an executive team that behaves in a manner consistent with our core values: integrity, excellence, selflessness, and courage. Still, Tangoe recognizes that it cannot build a great company without great culture. We also recognize that culture is organic, personal, and not something that can be fabricated.
So how does Tangoe—a global organization with over 2,200 employees in 11 countries across ten time zones, which has acquired several companies throughout its nearly 20-year history—maintain, nurture, and/or alter its collective company culture? Before answering that, an organization must first discover its company culture as it currently exists—without judgement. And that’s precisely what our new podcast and companion blog series intends to do.
This post is the first installment of our blog series and our upcoming podcast What is Culture? My name is Rocco Lungariello, and I will be the host and writer for this new project. Throughout the podcast, I will conduct interviews with Tangoe employees from across the globe in a wide-range of positions. I will also speak with industry analysts, Tangoe clients, and other professionals who have relationships with our organization.
The Goal of this Podcast
The goal of this podcast and its companion blog series is to rediscover Tangoe’s culture. What it means. What has shaped it, and what we are doing collectively as an organization to make Tangoe a place all its employees can be proud to work.
Although I’m the host, I’m the least important component of the show. The people I interview are the stars. I want to give them a voice. I want to listen. I want to learn from them. I want you to learn from them. I want the interviewees to learn about themselves. And all of this can be accomplished by asking pointed and honest questions that look to rediscover Tangoe’s collective culture.
I can say Tangoe is no longer “turning the corner.” That turn has been taken. Now, we’re progressing forward. We’re coming together as people, as human beings–working together for the good of each other–fully aware that it’s the key to our future and to our collective success.
Check out our trailer below.
Season 1 – Episode #1: Taking Ownership
Guest: Shaun McGrath, Sales Development Manager | Shelton, CT
As a Sales Development Manager for nearly three years at Tangoe, Shaun manages a team of Sales Development Reps who all work to uncover new business opportunities. In this candid conversation, Shaun discusses how middle management should play a critical role in truly leading and nurturing a positive culture.
Season 1 – Episode #2: The Employee Experience
Guest: Chrissy Pfeiffer, Business Analyst | Indianapolis, IN
Chrissy Pfeiffer, a Business Analyst at Tangoe who works on the Automation team, is also a member of the Culture Committee. She discusses what it was like to learn that MOBI was being acquired by Tangoe.
Season 1 – Episode #3: Transparency
Guest: Stephanie Ahearn, Team Lead, Talent Acquisition | Parsippany, NJ
Stephanie Ahearn, Team Lead for Talent Acquisition at Tangoe, discusses the importance of culture and being transparent with prospective employees.
Season 1 – Episode #4: Workload
Guest: Ije Rodgers, Product Marketing Manager | Parsippany, NJ
Ije Rodgers is a Product Marketing Manager who has been with Tangoe about one year. In this eye-opening interview, Ije discusses how culture is directly affected by employee workload and what Tangoe can do to help those who are overwhelmed.
Season 1 – Episode #5: Defibrillator
Guest: Le-Andra Isles, Director of Tangoe Pay | Parsippany, NJ
Le-Andra says that Tangoe’s acquisition of MOBI, which took place in December 2018, was a defibrillator—a dose of electric current that helped revive Tangoe and signal to the organization and to the industry that Tangoe is no longer “treading water,” but instead, is in a position to expand and progress forward.
Season 1 – Episode #6: Exit Interview
Guest: Craig Riegelhaupt, Senior Director of Product Marketing | Shelton, CT
For three years, Craig Riegelhaupt was Tangoe’s Senior Director of Product Marketing. This March, Craig left the company to pursue another opportunity. In this episode, Craig discusses his contribution to the company culture, the reasons for his departure, and what he will miss most about Tangoe.
Season 1 – Episode #7: Remote Employee
Guest: Nader Ali, Product Manager | Remote
Nader Ali, Product Manager, who has been with Tangoe for nearly ten years, discusses his experience being a remote employee, how he stays engaged with the entire organization, and what he does to help impact Tangoe’s overall culture. When it comes to culture and maintaining a connection to your organization, Nader says, “It’s about proactively staying engaged and owning it.”
Season 1 – Episode #8: Chinese Perspective
Guest: Tony Liu, Director of Human Resources | Kunshan, China
In this week’s episode, we head overseas to Tangoe’s Kunshan, China location, where I have the opportunity to speak with Tony Liu, Director of Human Resources for our China office. Not only does Tony provide a window into the culture of Tangoe’s Kunshan office, but he also discusses, quite beautifully, some of the overall characteristics of the Chinese culture and even offers a comparison between that of the western world.
Season 1 – Episode #9: Work Family
Guest: Josh Thompson, Senior Director, Operations | Memphis, TN
Josh Thompson, Senior Director of Operations in Tangoe’s Memphis office, discusses what it was like when Asentinel merged with Tangoe back in 2017 and why he has always considered his coworkers family. Josh has been with the organization since 2013 and currently manages a team of 13 employees located across China, India, Romania, and the United States.
Season 1 – Episode #10: Born Leader
Guest: Chris Brown, Director of Product Development | Indianapolis, IN
Chris Brown, Director of Product Development, who works out of Tangoe’s Indianapolis office, discusses how he keeps his team of 30+ engineers engaged, what culture means to him as a leader, and how he feels Tangoe has handled the acquisition of MOBI. Make sure to pay special attention to how Chris answers the question: What do you feel your role is in helping drive the “right” company culture? It’s pretty incredible.
Season 1 – Episode #11: First Look Back
Compilation Episode – First Ten Guests
New to the podcast? This week’s episode is a compilation of the first ten interviews and is perfect for first-time listeners and close followers alike. Hear key insights from every guest thus far.
Season 1 – Episode #12: It’s the How
Guest: Kyle Borner, Director of Global Data Loading & Invoice Processing and General Manager | Kunshan, China
Kyle has been with the organization for close to nine years. In fact, Kyle oversaw and executed development of the APAC Regional Headquarters from five employees at the outset of operations to over 180 in less than two years. Kyle says culture is an individual endeavor – that defining and building a culture is totally within our own control.
Season 1 – Episode #13: Think Globally
Guest: Sally Morrison, Director of Implementations | Abingdon, England
Sally was a wonderful guest since she was so real and honest and courageous. That’s the trifecta for me. I specifically appreciated that she took this opportunity to remind all of us at Tangoe that we are a global organization, yet sometimes for our employees and our customers, it could feel as if we are a U.S. organization with offices across the globe.
Season 1 – Episode #14: The Right Place
Guest: Mandy Tyrrell, Renewal Specialist | Austin, TX
In this interactive conversation, Mandy Tyrrell, a Renewal Specialist for Tangoe, shares a special bag of gifts that each help paint a mental picture and serve as symbolic reminders about how we can and should approach our every day.
Season 1 – Episode #15: We’re All in Sales
Guest: Sarah Curtis, Director of Sales Enablement | Shelton, CT
In this candid interview, Sarah discusses some major challenges that our sales organization faces and what she and leadership are doing to remove any obstacles. She also discusses how every Tangoe employee plays a part in the sales journey of our clients—how everyone who does their job with excellence is helping Tangoe retain, acquire, and delight our customers.
Season 1 – Episode #16: Tangoe LIVE 2019 Recap
Suprise Guest: Katie Ferrante-Greene, Director of Customer Programs | Parsippany, NJ
This week’s episode, our season one finale, is a look back at Tangoe LIVE 2019, our annual user conference, which took place just days ago – May 19-22. Although this installment of What is Culture? is mostly Rocco’s reflections of Tangoe LIVE 2019, it also includes a short conversation with the incredible Katie Ferrante-Greene, our Director of Customer Programs, who headed up the gigantic event. The episode also contains a preview of what to expect in Season 2.
Season 2 – Episode #1: The Heartbeat
Guest: Courtney Ebo, Senior Account Executive | Marriott International
It’s here! The season two premiere! Of course, the goal of this show is still to rediscover Tangoe’s culture. But in season two, we plan to extend beyond only interviewing our employees to include our clients, vendors, and more. This week’s guest is Courtney Ebo, Senior Account Executive at Marriott International. She and I recorded together during day one of Tangoe LIVE 2019. Courtney, a Florida State graduate and a long-time Californian, had plenty to share regarding culture.
Season 2 – Episode #2: Work Relationships
Guest: Cristiana Salaoru, BPO Manager | Bucharest, Romania
Cristiana has been with Tangoe nearly seven years, including her time with Asentinel, before the acquisition. This interview is a reminder that no matter where our coworkers sit, all we need to do is take the time to learn more about them as a person, which will in turn, improve the culture, as well as our professional, working relationships.
Season 2 – Episode #3: Culture Trumps Strategy
Guest: Dave Hansen, Operating Executive at Marlin Equity Partners & Executive Chairman of Tangoe
Dave Hansen discusses what it was like to publicly announce the acquisition of Tangoe in 2017, why he feels Bob Irwin was and is the perfect CEO for the organization, how he feels we’ve handled the acquisition of MOBI, where he sees Tangoe in the next five years, and why he believes that culture trumps strategy.
Season 2 – Episode #4: Making Progress
Guest: Emily Zhao, Client Services Manager | Kunshan, China
Emily began her career at Tangoe as an Invoice Processor. Six months into the role, she sought training and gained the skills necessary to lead the invoice processing team, helping initiate an invoice acquisition and an invoice auditing team.This episode reminds us that if you want to evolve and progress at Tangoe—or anywhere— there is an opportunity to do so, as long as you share a similar desire and drive that exists within Emily.
Season 2 – Episode #5: Partnership
Guest: Julie Davis, Team Lead, Telecom Expense Management | KeyBank
The great thing about expanding beyond Tangoe employees in Season 2 is that we get to learn about the cultures of other organizations. And in this case, that organization is KeyBank, a major national bank headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, with over 18,000 employees and branches in over 15 US States. Julie Davis, Team Lead for Telecom Expense Management, discusses the culture at KeyBank, as well as her perception of ours here at Tangoe.
Season 2 – Episode #6: Second Look Back
This week’s show is a compilation of the last ten episodes and contains guests from both season one and season two: Tangoe employees, vendors, and clients – from April to July. Plus, this episode has been arranged in a way where you can follow along without having previously listened to the original interviews. Though you should.
Season 2 – Episode #7: Constant Effort
Guest: Sam Araujo, Internal Communications Specialist | Parsippany, NJ
Nurturing a positive workplace culture is a constant effort, hence the title of this week’s episode. Sam discusses the origin of this podcast, some important ongoing projects and initiatives currently on her plate, the goals of the culture committees, and where she hopes to see our global culture progress in the next year. As you listen to the interview, pay attention to all of the initiatives that Sam is either leading or contributing; it will make you wonder if she ever sleeps!
Season 2 – Episode #8: Retrospective
Guest: Kevin Redmond, Product Manager | Memphis, TN
Kevin is a wealth of knowledge, as he holds several certifications from the Project Management Institute and the Scrum Alliance. He’s also an adjunct professor at Union University, where he’s currently teaching Information Systems in the Workplace. In this week’s show, Kevin educates us a bit about retrospective meetings in the Agile & software development world, how they translate directly to any field, and how they can affect culture.
Season 2 – Episode #9: Empathy
Guest: Dan DiVito, Director of Technology | Shelton, Connecticut Public Schools
In celebration of Friendship Day (August 4th), this episode features our host’s best friend, Dan DiVito, a Director of Technology, who works less than five minutes from Tangoe’s Shelton, CT office. In season two, we moved beyond interviewing Tangoe employees to include vendors and clients. This week, we’ve taken it a step further. Although outside of our organization, you’ll learn that he’s still within our sphere, and has a strong opinion on what behaviors can both negatively and positively affect workplace culture.
Season 2 – Episode #10: CMO’s First Impressions
Guest: Jill Ransome, Chief Marketing Officer | Shelton, CT
This week’s episode features Tangoe’s new CMO, Jill Ransome, who’s been with the organization less than one month. In this candid conversation, Jill discusses the unusual interview process she experienced with Tangoe, her perceptions of our culture, and some of her immediate plans of action for Marketing. This is the first C-level and first new employee to ever be featured on this podcast.
Season 2 – Episode #11: Work-Life Balance
Guest: Caroline Couer, Project Director | Courbevoie, France
Caroline has been with Tangoe since 2017, though she’s been part of Anatole going back to 2006. In this informal conversation, Caroline discusses what it was like for her to be a part of two acquisitions—once in 2016 and again in 2017. You will also get to hear how the Tangoe offices in Europe are working more closely together every day, and how they’re integrating more and more with their colleagues in America. We even talk books, cuisine, and how to maintain a healthy work-life-balance.
Season 2 – Episode #12: Employee Appreciation
The Culture Committee | Indianapolis, IN
This special episode features 14 Tangoe employees from our Indianapolis office and was recorded during Power Week (August 19-23), which was five consecutive days of activities & events that celebrate our four core values: integrity, excellence, selflessness, and courage. It was also a week chock-full of activities and events that exemplify employee appreciation. This episode also includes portions of Tangoe’s August Town Hall address (broadcasted via Instagram Live), which was delivered by Bob Irwin.
Season 2 – Episode #13: Versatility
Guest: Tara Rodriguez, Senior Business Analyst | Parsippany, NJ/Remote
Learn from a seasoned professional who’s been in the TEM industry more than 20 years. In fact, she’s one of Tangoe’s most tenured employees and has worked in nearly every sector of the business; she’s also experienced several mergers and acquisitions. Currently a remote employee based in our Parsippany, NJ office, Tara’s a Senior Business Analyst with two chief responsibilities: First, overseeing ongoing implementation activities for General Electric (GE); and second: Developing ways to build automation into the implementations group, as well as throughout all of Tangoe, to help simplify our processes.
Season 2 – Episode #14: Transplanted
Guest: Marina Deane, Tangoe’s Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist | Remote
In addition to promoting Tangoe as an employer of choice for professionals, Marina is a true advocate for our candidates, ensuring they all undergo a very positive learning experience, whether they acquire a position with us or not. What’s interesting about Marina’s journey with Tangoe is that she was born and raised in England and began her career with us nearly six years ago, shortly after the British company ttMobiles was acquired. In 2017, she and her husband Mike, moved from England to the United States and have been living in New Hampshire ever since. Fortunately for us, Marina retained her position with Tangoe.
Season 2 – Episode #15: Collective
Guest: The Collections Team | Shelton, CT
Here’s a fun and candid conversation with five members of the Collections Team at Tangoe, who all work together from our Shelton, Connecticut office. We talk about their primary goals and responsibilities, their group dynamic, their perceptions of our culture, their thoughts about our leadership, as well as why the team recently decided to listen to this podcast together as a department.
Season 2 – Episode #16: Part 1: Organizational Psychology
Guest: Dr. Christopher J. Budnick, Assistant Professor of Psychology | SCSU
Learn from Dr. Christopher J. Budnick, an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Southern Connecticut State University, who earned a Ph.D. in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from Northern Illinois University. So, why did I choose to speak with experts in this field? There are many reasons, and some of the answers will be revealed in this episode, but essentially, I thought it would be interesting to shed light on this particular field – to even know that it exists – to learn more about the complexities of the workplace and to hear a professional’s thoughts on this podcast, our journey, and to offer advice and insight for me, for our listeners, and for Tangoe, as we work to discover our culture. Note: This episode is part one of two of our Season 2 finale.
Season 2 – Episode #16: Part 2: Organizational Psychology
Guest: Dr. Mary Ignagni, Psychology Professor | Sacred Heart University
Part two of the season two finale of What is Culture? features Dr. Mary Ignagni, a Psychology Professor at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut, and their Director of the Industrial-Organizational (I/O) Psychology program. In this episode, you will listen to Mary discuss the role of an I/O Psychologist, national culture versus organizational culture, dominant culture versus subcultures, as well as some challenges that Tangoe may face on our journey to rediscovering our culture.
Season 3 – Episode #1: Third Look Back
Season three premieres with a compilation of the last ten episodes, which aired from July to October 2019. Hear insights from Tangoe employees, psychology professors, and outsiders, who have been affected by our show. This week’s show is very shareable: It’s under 20 minutes. It includes multiple guests and perspectives, and it paints a clear picture of what we hope to achieve with this show.
Season 3 – Episode #2: Mind & Body
Guest: Aarti Sharma, Service Delivery Manager | Bangalore, India
This week, we travel to Bangalore, India, which is roughly 8,000 miles (or about 13,000 kilometers) from New York City, for an honest and inspiring conversation with Aarti Sharma, a Service Delivery Manager, who works from Tangoe’s Bangalore office. We cover many topics, including the struggles that come with working a night shift, the culture of the Bangalore office, and even her role as a Zumba instructor. Aarti also highlights and reminds us that as a Service Delivery Manager, part of her role, or actually part of her purpose, is to help protect Tangoe’s identity. A profound and courageous statement.
Season 3 – Episode #3: Knowledge Transfer
Guest: Deb Hughes, Regional VP/Director Service Delivery – APAC | Sydney, Australia
This week, we head to Australia for a compelling conversation with Deb Hughes, Tangoe’s Regional Vice President/Director of Service Delivery for the APAC region. Deb is a very knowledgeable about the Technology Expense Management industry and is also a wise and insightful person with a unique and interesting tale of her journey with Tangoe. In this episode, you’ll also learn that Deb is a world traveler, a huge Star Wars and ABBA fan, and somewhat of a celebrity, having appeared on three television quiz shows this year, including The Chase.
Season 3 – Episode #4: Energy
Guest: Mike Iong, Director of the Corporate Program Management Office | Parsippany, NJ
We cover many topics & areas in this episode, including Mike’s love for Brazilian jiu-jitsu, his relationship with his family, an incredible story of how he met his wife, the influence of his Chinese ancestry, his direct involvement with the Tangoe-MOBI integration team, as well as the current culture and vibe inside of Tangoe’s Parsippany, New Jersey office. Also, there’s an interesting twist at the end of the episode, where Mike pulls a switcheroo, and he becomes the interviewer, and Rocco becomes the interviewee.
Season 3 – Episode #5: Enablement
Guest: Katie Nehrenz, Director Operational Enablement | Indianapolis, IN
Katie Nehrenz discusses the Learning Management System, Lessonly, and the reasons why it’s such a valuable internal resource. We also cover parenthood, including the challenges that come with raising a four-year-old son, and of course, we talk about the culture in the Indianapolis office, including how Katie feels we have and are handling the Tangoe/MOBI integration. Katie joined MOBI in 2013, and began as an Account Specialist, and has since served as a Service Delivery Manager and a Client Services Manager before advancing to her current position.