Ex-WeWork VP launches Groove, a work-from-home social session app

Investor: “Groove has developed a simple and clean way to tap into what people didn’t even realize they needed.”

 A Groove session's group chat (photo credit: Groove)
A Groove session's group chat
(photo credit: Groove)

The 2020 pandemic changed the way we work - if not forever, then at least for the foreseeable future. While the COVID-19 restrictions that required a vast amount of employees to work from home have abated, many employers have kept WFH on the table in light of its benefits, which include higher productivity, accessibility and improved well-being, according to a report from the UK Office of National Statistics.

WFH certainly presents at least one glaring issue: a lack of social interaction between workers. While shared workspaces like WeWork and Mindspace offer a solution to this by gathering remote workers into the same physical space, many WFHers still opt for remaining in the comfort of their own home offices, missing out on workplace comradery in the process.

With that issue in mind, former WeWork vice president Josh Greene has launched Groove (www.groove.ooo): a mobile app that links up to four WFH employees for from anywhere and any company to participate in on-demand 50-minute social sessions in order to combat the distraction and lack of motivation often faced when working from home.

Combating distraction, lack of motivation when working from home

“Social health is imperative for well-being. We designed Groove to facilitate a simple, fun, and serendipitous way to bring solo, hybrid and remote workers together, to help each other accomplish their goals in life.”

Josh Greene

“Social health is imperative for well-being. We designed Groove to facilitate a simple, fun and serendipitous way to bring solo, hybrid and remote workers together, to help each other accomplish their goals in life,” said Groove’s CEO and co-founder. “By facilitating repeat moments for human connection with the weak ties that are proven to enhance happiness and job satisfaction, we hope to become the ultimate human-powered support system.” 

 Groove CEO and cofounder Josh Greene (credit: Groove) Groove CEO and cofounder Josh Greene (credit: Groove)

Groove sessions begin with a 5-minute video call where you say hi to your group and share your goal for the session. Following that, the bulk of the session is devoted to checking off items from your to-do list (which is visible to the group), and sharing encouragement with each other for knocking out tasks via a group chat function. Another video call afterward marks the session’s conclusion.

Groove’s initial pilot is currently underway, hosting sessions for 1,000 beta testers. Many of those users have reported their satisfaction with the platform.

“I use Groove almost every morning – to get centered and focused and prepare for the day ahead, or I use it to do specific, meaty tasks such as client proposals or workshop design,” said Alison Coward, team culture coach and founder of Bracket. “By breaking down big tasks into manageable chunks, I always make progress, and that can be significant when I’m procrastinating or avoiding something because it seems overwhelming.”

Groove has secured $3.5m in funding, led by Mike Hirshland of Resolute Ventures, alongside 27V, Fresh Ventures, FullCircle, Overton Venture Capital and Verissimo Ventures.

“The way people approach work is changing. Solo work enables people to design their lives and schedules, achieve a better work life balance and experiment with new locations, industries and environments,” said Hirshland, co-founder at Resolute Ventures. “We invested in Groove as it has developed a simple and clean way to tap into what people didn’t even realize they needed.”