It was all about the donuts. Or, at least, that’s how it started.
Working remotely is certainly a different experience, especially when it comes to the co-worker relationship. Every day, we get up and we meet in a virtual room, and although we don’t see each other’s faces, we probably spend more time with each other than with most of our friends and/or family (as in most jobs). And what’s even more amazing, is that we’ve broken that invisible barrier of being physically present in order to become friends.
One day in our virtual office space a picture of donuts gave birth to a crazy idea: to meet each other in person. Where? Portland. Why? Donuts…and also the great comments about the city (and food) from the locals and people who had been there before. Why not? It seemed crazy, but it also seemed about time to do it! So after the announcement in the general chatroom, it became official… SKETCHDECKERS WOULD MEET IN PORTLAND IN JUNE 2016!
After lots of planning, Visas and looming trip itineraries, we were all set. June 20th had arrived. Maybe some of us were more nervous than others, but there was excitement in all of us for sure. What would these ‘3D meat versions’ of us look like? Would they be as nice as they seemed to be in Hipchat? Was it weird that we felt like we had known each other from so long ago but had never really met? Lots of thoughts. No expectations. I don’t think anybody knew exactly what to expect…but what we found out was certainly beyond any idea we had created in our minds.
From the moment that we first met, we carried on with conversations as if we had just seen each other the day before. We went places, ate and drank coffee, had meetings, shared thoughts, partied, BBQ’ed, played basketball (watched how they played basketball) and so many other things together. I could probably describe every minute of it, but I’ll just say it was truly awesome. There was always a great and friendly atmosphere that made us realize that no matter where we physically were, we were part of something bigger…something that transcends barriers of language and geography, all to bring us together in the great team that is SketchDeck. What a warm and fuzzy feeling!
But as all great things…this, too, had to come to an end. People started taking off, and things got back to normal. It’s funny how such great things can come from small, random Tuesday comments in a virtual space. In the end, I don’t think everybody got to try the donuts that started this whole thing…but those great 3-4 days will forever stay in our hearts.
See you all next time!