A healing journey for a team

Our Summer has been very busy so far — we launched new product Deals; changed Innocode style; went to Norway, Tysnesfest to provide on spot support for TicketCo; our Kyiv WordPress team working like busy bees with Agrikjøp; bunch of new talented folks joined Innocode in three cities (and we are looking for more here) and that’s not all :). Still, last weekend some of us got together and traveled to the second highest mountain in Ukraine — Petros (2020 m).

Relaxing after climbing a steep hill

Most of the time you have to climb (no, crawl!) up to a very slope hill, almost biting your teeth with your knees :))

Luckily we had a proper guide and inspirer — our CTO Valerii Shypunov just came back from World Mountain Running Championship and pushed us forward to the top, encouraging to enjoy the way:

Outstanding views

… and the local inhabitants :)

For some of us it was the first time at all to see the mountains, not to say climb them) But you can imagine how it felt when we made it to the top (took us 5 hrs) together!

We had 2 days in mountains, so it turned out a very good decision to climb on the Saturday and sleep/relax the whole Sunday:

Half-alive upon arrival :) Fish-eyed shot.

The point of the whole journey was to spend time together outside the common environment — office; but we didn’t plan any quests nor teambuilding activities or agendas — just followed the weather, our feelings, current mood and heart.

In the evening, sitting beside the bonfire we found out that this journey enriched each of us. Like a real tech/agile company, we made a retrospective, which confirmed that we behaved as a real friendly team not only at the office)

Here are some points we discovered about this journey:

1. Different environment pushes new ideas

During the trip we talked a lot about the way we make our products at Innocode. It wasn’t necessary, but it came out naturally — what can be improved in the UX for the end user? Which technologies to use to make widgets for newspapers even faster? Usually at the office evetything is scheduled and time is the main constraint.

2. Harsh environments help discover another side of people you work with

We slept in the tents, cooked food on the fire, had limited amount of coffee, had toilets in the bushes :), and had to drink water from the mountain river (no boiling!). But in our case we were lucky! No one ever complained, no one had to be told what to do. Harsh environment only proved how precious are people each of us work with.

3. Discover your own abilities

Some of us made it to the top, some —made it to the half of the way, some — didn’t make it. Now we know which muscles to train and also know that there’s no need to punish yourself if you didn’t made it. It’s good to have own priorities and not to give up them in favor of proving anything to anyone else.

4. Bring more coffee and life hacks

Of course, there are some basic things we learned about organization, relevant to each team. For example, now we know that if you have a coffee machine at the office, you have to bring more coffee with you anywhere. People love it and it tastes like heaven, when it’s limited. Or, if you didn’t take any dishwashing liquid — you can clean dishes with the sand:)

Summer is still here. Take your backpacks, your friends and get to adventures as a team!

Kudos to everyone for making this journey unforgettable together!