How co-working retreats help to optimise our agile operations
Agile ways of working are integral to the way Hyphen operates, enabling us to be flexible and responsive while retaining focus on the bigger picture. Our quarterly roadmap lays out what we want to accomplish and helps to identify the route toward progress.
That is where our co-working retreats come in. As a growing remote-first company, it is important we discuss this journey together in person – so to do that, Hyphen converges on a particular location for a week of plotting where we are heading as a company.
Signature co-working retreats
These trips are important from both a strategic and a team-building perspective. They provide a great opportunity to bond in a personal setting and welcome new people to our growing team in a dynamic environment. The retreats are also key for ideation sessions and discussing matters more freely and organically. They also give us the opportunity to chart a course for the future alongside our regular fortnightly agile sprints.
After visiting Sicily last autumn and the Austrian capital of Vienna in the first quarter, the latest retreat recently took place in Budapest, where some members of our team are currently based.
Hyphen ways of working and outlook for the future
Each day started with warm-up sessions to bring our team together and fire up their creativity before getting down to business and looking at the future of work. The agenda included retro, review, and planning sessions for the next quarter. Our business-centric endeavours are always complemented with sporting, cultural and team-building activities to bring us all closer together.
“Daily warm-up sessions involving each team member giving a small task to the group – for example, doing an illustration of an activity – to help the team to get to know each other better, push creativity and set the scene for the rest of the day,” says founder Michael Savolainen.
A key focus for the review and planning of the next quarter is on how Hyphen can further improve operational excellence.
We want to leverage new technologies to further streamline and digitise our end-to-end engagement processes. As an example, our priorities for the next quarter lie in automating contractual and onboarding steps and integrating external solutions into our stack using APIs.
“Hyphen has tremendous potential for growth. Therefore, we are focused on building scalable internal processes across a number of verticals, including ops, service delivery and finance, so that they further enable and strengthen our growth,” says business manager Kamila Potocarova, who was instrumental in organising the latest retreat.
“This includes establishing clear digitised processes, systematically organising information, and carefully preparing how to move forward. What is more, we are also looking for top talent to join the team in several key positions.”
Growing Hyphen team
The Budapest adventure was also an opportunity to onboard several new team members, including Pietro Vecchiato and Alex Baldwin, in a personal and inclusive way. Spending time with the newest members of the Hyphenation highlighted the sheer number of colleagues who joined us in the last two years and the way they co-shape the constantly evolving culture at Hyphen.
After visiting the wonderful city of Budapest, we are hungry for more and have already mapped out that the next quarterly roadmap session will take place in Finland in August. There, besides the regular co-working agenda, we are very much looking forward to exploring the country’s natural beauty and welcoming yet more new faces to Hyphen’s expanding team.
Top Budapest highlights
Dining: One of the top experiences was exploring Budapest’s best culinary spots including MazelTov (a pretty Mediterranean eatery), Retek (a cosy and traditional Hungarian restaurant) and Stand25 (a splendid neighborhood bistro with a freestyle Hungarian kitchen), as well as croissants from Freya and coffee from Espresso Embassy.
Co-working spots: The benefits of these spaces are numerous, such as being part of international business professional communities, getting a creative boost by being around other people and finding opportunities for collaboration. This time, we were hosted by the KAPTAR Co-working Space, which is located in the heart of downtown Budapest.
Sports: The top running space for Hyphen runners has proven to be Margaret Island, which is full of running and jogging tracks and offers a tranquil getaway within the city. We also enjoyed an intensive game of squash in the City Squash Club but when it came to relaxation, we visited the famous Szechenyi baths, which helped us to regenerate after an intensive co-working week.