How K15t's Culture has Changed During Corona Times
Since the last post on K15t's company culture was written, a lot has changed (yes, we're looking at you, Corona!). In early 2020 when the Coronavirus situation started to escalate in Germany and around the world, the decision was made to switch to home office mode.
With the exception of a few remote members of staff, we were all primarily office-based prior to the pandemic. Making the shift to full-time remote work was a big adjustment for us and many of the ways we work together have needed to change.
Here's how K15t's company culture continues to shine through since we've been working remotely:
Happy Hour Goes Virtual with Cyber Schlampazius
Some context: Schlampazius is the name of a bar next door to our office in Stuttgart-Ost. It's the usual spot for some after-work 'biers'.
So when the first Zoom happy hour was scheduled at the start of lockdown, one team member honorably named it 'Cyber Schlampazius' and the name stuck. There have been several Cyber Schlampazius sessions since where anyone who felt like joining could come along for a catch-up.
Discussions started on topics like where people grew up, through to randomly sharing videos such as Baby Shark. I guess everyone was going a bit stir-crazy at that point of lockdown.
The best thing about it is that you don't even need to queue to get a drink!
A Surprise Delivery
Everyone likes to get stuff in the mail, right? But it's even better when you receive something out of the blue. A few weeks ago we were all treated to a K15t care package.
The package was filled with K15t-branded goodies, COVID essentials such as a fabric face mask, hand sanitizer, and just-for-fun items like Haribo sweets, and a müsli pot! Enclosed in each package was a card with some photo memories of the K15t summer party on it with a reminder to stay safe and have a great summer.
The package was a wonderful way to bring a bit of 'K15t spirit' into our homes and remind us of our teammates and the sense of culture we all get from working together.
Keeping the Competition Alive with Remote Hacketse
Hacketse is our thrice-yearly version of a 24-hour hackathon event where team members compete on projects in teams, to win the trophy and prestigious title of 'winner'! Usually, the events take place in the office, but this year, Hacketse went remote.
The remote-ness of the event didn't stunt any of the usual fun. Some really creative and technically-advanced ideas were born and developed. In true Hacketse style, to keep their strengths up whilst they were hard at work, all participating teams were supplied with pizza which was delivered to each of their homes!
Setup for Success
After a temporary period of makeshift home office setups, K15t made sure that we each had the correct equipment to be able to work from home successfully.
Our home office setups allow us to be creative and productive whilst at work, but most important of all – they're ergonomic. It's a good feeling to know that K15t "has our backs"... literally!
Now that we don't see each other face-to-face everyday, we're posting updates on Slack more frequently, jumping on Zoom calls when needed to replace in-person meetings or chance encounters in the office kitchen. Employees who were previously remote have noticed big improvements in the amount that's being shared within and across teams, and they feel even more in-the-know than before.
Since we plunged into the remote-working world, here are some other ways our communication has been amplified across the business:
- More internal blog entries have been posted in our Confluence intranet. From personal updates and introductions from new team members to company strategy updates, we can all read about it in the blog.
- Müsli is well-loved throughout Germany, and now we can tuck into a bowl of it while enjoying K15t’s new ‘Müsli Board’ feature in Confluence. This running slide show presents weekly highlights across the company – from birthdays and anniversaries, to customer feedback and important events. An invention from the first remote Hacketse!
- All teams have been using roadmaps and Jira more deliberately to be more open about our quarterly planning, so we can get feedback from across the business.
Our 'New Normal'
So this is our 'new normal'. As a company, we've adapted well. We were able to pivot quickly into remote work due to the fantastic Atlassian tools we use, and those same tools have allowed our internal communication to thrive.
Fancy joining our team? Wherever you are in the world, take a look at our open positions: