It’s been a while, but l’m back with a string of product team firsts. As l write, our 30 strong team are travelling from all over Europe to a cluster of villas deep in the remote village of Garmen, tucked away in the Bulgarian mountains. After years of pandemic restrictions, there’s a lot of in-person catching up to do.
I planned this product team offsite with three objectives in mind. For starters, l want to officially celebrate an initiative we kick-started at the beginning of the year: the TIMIFY Intern Academy. Four students joined us remotely to learn “on the job”, with members of the team coaching them. On Sunday, we’ finally get to meet in person for the first time. They’ll participate in a special hackathon, with various coding challenges. More on that next week.
Secondly, the business objective: a hackathon for our core team, “Design, Develop, and Present an App in a Week”. The team will form a handful of groups and be tasked to present their results to a panel of judges. The twist? In addition to points for functionality, they’ll be judged on their commercial acumen. What tech solutions can benefit our users – in ways they don’t even know they need? Creativity, saleability, and an element of “surprise and delight” are what we’re looking for. I can’t wait to see what the team deliver.
The app hackathon is a precursor to a major launch planned for the summer of 2022: a re-vamp of our App Marketplace. The re-vamp will significantly impact the app landscape for our users, and I’ll share more on that over the next few weeks.
Thirdly, the team objective. I want us to re-evaluate our work-life balance, and ensure that we take home with us a fresh and healthy energy. To that end, we have a fun filled, opt-in schedule: early morning runs through the mountain trails; employee-led workshops, sport tournaments, games nights, cooking challenges, and more.
We’ve never had an offsite like this. I have high hopes, and l want to take you with us for the experience. With that in mind, we’ll be posting daily diary updates, so you’ll get to know the team, see how we work (and how competitive we are!) plus discover the apps we build.