Hackdayz 2019 fun and creativity

Reading Time: 3 minutes

By providing a simulated training environment, games offer developers the ability to manage and fix future complex problems and apply any theoretical framework directly in an entertaining and collaborative manner. These lines perfectly describe our last Hackdayz in Budapest.

In the beginning, I had no idea why the company would invest so much money to get us from three different countries to a fourth. But in the end, I realized the added value for the company and for us.

Play the game and learning will be fun – exceptionally! Indeed, that was the slogan. Our motto these days was: Develop hard, play harder: Having fun with colleagues increases creativity, efficiency and productivity. Imagine that you are surrounded by more than 30 developers who work in 7 different projects that need to be completed in 48 hours. You can imagine how such a virtual training environment would have a positive effect on your performance in the customer area. This way we can take the time pressure off our shoulders if we have to meet a deadline.

Apart from the future benefit at the customer level, my colleagues have shown a very good result for their projects. B. we now have such a nice app for checking in and out of offices instead of the touch ID, now our colleague Amit also has a trading bot app with which he made a profit of $ 10.57.

Needless to say, we refreshed ourselves from an escape game and an enchanting river tour in Budapest.

The bottom line, no matter what I have in the future, no matter how busy I am, I want to repeat such a nice experiment.

Culture exchange and its effect on productivity

Reading Time: 4 minutes

It all started some years ago, particularly in 2014, while I was in behavioural economics session. I heard a quote from my teacher, that I could not first believe. He said that “Culture eats strategy for the breakfast”. This phrase originated by Peter Drucker. Honestly, I did not care about it, and I thought it was just word of mouth, but after all of these years, I just figured out he was two plus two correct, and I totally agree with him. This is the absolute reality, and any company disconnecting culture from strategy are putting their success at significant risk. So you need to define your strategy and ensure that your culture supports it.

Due to globalization, people from various cultures and countries increasing conduct business with each other. Technology may be a temporary solution to enable people to easily connect with people around the world in a moment’s notice, but there are some cultural facts, which technology may not be able to solve.

Let us take our last travel to Macedonia as an example and check its results on tickets time-saving (expected time – time actually spent in the tickets) during a certain sprint and compare it with the time saving of the last sprint and considering the other variables constant not to have a decision about the real productive effect of culture exchange. For the past two sprints, the time saving was ranging between 1% to 1.5%, but currently, it exceeds 4%. This increase in efficiency reflects the rise of communication among workers in Switzerland, Germany, and Macedonia. Needless to say that there may be other factors affecting this increase in productivity, but as mentioned above, we are considering these factors as constant.

Apart from the productivity issue, I kept asking myself a question of why I was so touched by these Macedonian people and their country? Was it the typical smile that covered up the office, I didn’t know yet? The only way to find out is to start communicating with these people to learn more about their world, because their culture, including the way they behave and interact, is so different from ours.

Apart from the people, I really like Macedonian food, as a matter of fact, I gained 2 KG in this short visit. Now you can imagine how tasty the food was, thanks to our Macedonian colleagues for such fantastic hospitality.

It was really a great pleasure to meet friends from afar. In a nutshell, just to finish off our company has 3 different cultures inside it (Swiss, German and Macedonian), and they are all very different in certain aspects, but what our company is trying to do on a daily basis, it tries to take the best of all three and try to merge them into one culture. This is not about crossing the borders… it’s about extending them around us to create a global mindset.

It’s all about teamwork, creativity and cultural change

Reading Time: 6 minutes

People of different religions and cultures live side-by-side in almost every part of the world, and most of us have overlapping identities which unite us in very different groups.
We can love what we are, without hating what- and who we are not. We can thrive in our own tradition, even as we learn from others, and come to respect their teachings

Kofi Annan

Over the past few years, the field and management sector of major companies have a big problem of how to arrange the days of their employees, something that will give a bit of strong light and positivity, which will avoid monotony and on the other hand give a great impetus to their creativity and vision, much greater motivation and strong spirit in overcoming further obstacles and challenges. The problem is even greater if companies are stationed in several locations in different countries so that communication is interconnected constantly through technical apps, almost virtual, simply a voice, perhaps a shy picture or video call and of course mostly text and chat conversations.

N47 locations: Switzerland, Germany and Macedonia.

It is very often the case that the company hierarchy is a list of members of different cultures, nationalities so that it becomes an even more difficult task of organizing team buildings. But on the other hand, it is one of the reasons why that makes them special.

The differences are part of us, the differences are making us so special, and of course differences, we know well and we have become accustomed to it.

Differences – make us special and unique.

Team building, joint team events or hacking term in the IT industry are part of every company agenda, happens every year and they often happen a few times per year.

It’s a chemistry thing, it’s the time where you can share your points of view, your thoughts, your personality, your creativity, your vision, it’s the time when you are not representing just yourself, but also your culture, your country.

But, the idea of creating an event, that will bring together – Team Building and Hackathon event?  Yes, we did it and we arranged and created. Almost one week, gathering the team together. The Family!

24 hours of work, pure juice of 100% creativity, dedication and hard work.  Commitment always brings success, and YES some of the team after the deadline and voting for the best team and the best project made, they had a shootout with the Champs Titles and Presents. Absence Hub – Resource Guru and Absence.io connector TEAM did it, they collected the votes and drove all the way through like Real Madrid in Champions League.

Yes, it was worth it! Title goes to the winners!

The event was a success, the employees loved it. And all of them are sharing the same opinion, maybe some time and somewhere everything is not 100% perfect, but even the misses are part of that. People create, sometimes in the process of creating always is something missing, but in the end, the finish line and the title – that’s all that matters!

Final conclusion – 100% success and that’s what all IT companies need, at least once, but it’s good to be twice or even more per year.  It’s chemistry, it is fun, it is releasing the creativity inside all of the members of the company that doesn’t have a chance before to describe themselves with their own words.
It’s a fact that programmers find Hackathons the perfect venue to unleash their ideas, it’s often that these kinds of events produce ingenious products or ideas, or even they show the real potential, creativity, talents of employees. It’s an easy challenge, but the benefits of it can be great for the organization, company or network. And together with team building events, it’s double more fun and joy for the team.

The last moments after the end of the event, the euphoria of the faces of all colleagues, but also a bit of grief over why it was all too short, everyone wants more time together. But that’s the idea and motivation for the next event. Where, how, when, what’s next? Give your thoughts and ideas, let’s take a look and decide together. Мaybe somewhere on the sea, fishing, hiking, or mountain and skiing? Or on some great concert with DJs or maybe Stones or U2?

Afterwards, travelling back to home town, sitting in the aeroplane and thinking about the past few days, wow it happened all so fast and the days flew like a fast cigarette break…

The A-team surrounded with lots of positive energy and good memories. And the question is what next, where to go next, what should we arrange next?

I think, whatever, just bring it on baby!