Twice a year the entire opesus team comes together for a full week of what we call “Office Weeks”- one in summer and another in winter. For us, these weeks are the most intense, productive, and popular team working weeks of the year.
We enjoy them so much because of their very special dynamic. The atmosphere is unique. We not only have productive discussions and fresh perspectives on processes within opesus, but we also spend the week together in a huge house. This means that we can have more than just the usual day-to-day work routine. We prepare dinner together, play games, and hang out as people who enjoy each other’s company. There is a lot of laughter, friendly conversations, barbecuing, fun competitions and various other group activities for anyone who wants to participate. Without a doubt, the office weeks are in many ways very special to us and our company culture.
Everything is different this year
Considering the COVID-19 situation, all opesians have been working from home since March 2020. Unfortunately, this also meant that we couldn’t meet in person for this years Sunny Office Week. That didn’t stop us – we bridged the time difference for our US colleagues and from the comfort of our homes and through Microsoft Teams, opesus Office Week was in session!
Have our offices become redundant?
Seeing that all opesians have been working from home for at least the last 3 months, where we work was a topic on the agenda. Are we going to continue to work remotely? Have our offices become redundant? What does it mean for our on-site customer implementations?
From the open discussion we had, several points came to light:
- Even though our offices are centrally located, some opesians have long commuting time. Therefore, working from home is very much welcome for some of us as it saves time.
- Being used to working with colleagues from different locations, working from home has not posed a hinderance as we always have video calls.
- Working from home can be lonely or challenging as we all have different circumstances.
- Many of us miss coming into the office –we miss the jokes, informal coffee chats, and the ability to lean over to our colleague to quickly ask for
- We also miss our ergonomic working stations – comfortable chairs and standing tables, including the coffee machine (all too important for our developers)
Fact is, we enjoy working together in our offices very much. However, it’s the personal contact we value most: Chatting during breaks, helping each other out and being the winning team, we are. But we could imagine other ways to meet and, in the consequence, will definitely look into new ways of open office concepts and mobile work.
Seeing how working from home has been working so well for all of us, this opened up new ways of working such that of a digital nomad/expat.
Fresh Ideas: Remote Work from Other Locations than Home or Office
As the team grows, we have become increasingly diverse. Thus, for some opesians, the possibility to work from other locations than (home) office, is welcomed. It would allow them to spend an extended amount of time with their family members who are living abroad. And for those who’ve been bitten by the travel-bug, it would give them the opportunity to live abroad for a period longer than a vacation.
During the Office Week, we explored the concept of working from different locations or countries for a certain amount of time. How could this possibly look like? Do we need rules and guidelines? How does this affect future expansion of the business?
The lively discussion brought about fresh new ideas and a general consent that we will start exploring remote work – but overall, we agree that such arrangements must never compromise our relationship with our customers, the quality of our work, and it must not have a negative impact on the team and business.
One thing is for sure: 2020 has changed many things in the world. And some for opesus. We are excited to see all the opportunities that have opened up and can’t wait to explore our new ways of working!