A Corporate Field Trip: Remote Work, What we Learned & More

Let me give you some context – Premergency embraced the online world many years ago. Before the world changed and saw the benefits -and challenges- of remote work. It gave us flexibility and allowed us to recruit amazing talent from all over Canada, and some beyond borders.

But we are not indifferent to what that could mean to building a nurturing culture. Remote work is always nice on paper, but it can also mean that someone may feel that they have less support from the company or their team, and many other challenges.

So, striking a proper balance based on communication is essential to foster proactive collaboration and a healthy sense of belonging.

Our team is a full-time remote workforce. We encourage discipline and self-motivation based on passion and, why not, fun. We like to have fun with what we do and be creative with how we execute our work.

With that said, we also hold periodic in-person team meetings. A time to get together, look at where we are as a team/organization, where do we want to go as a company and have fun together. This can be dinner and a night playing Nintendo, going for a classic Escape Room, or maybe exploring each other’s life updates and passions. Whatever we do, we aim to be present, share ideas, have a few laughs, and end up with a plan to move forward.

Last week, it was time to get together again. Some of the team met me at my place to get ready to head to Toronto, others were flying into the city or taking the train to the GTA.

We made it a road trip. And I mean snacks, songs and games.

Our itinerary was spread out over three days that included team meetings with State of Department presentations, and the Moodle Moot Canada convention at York University.

The team meeting was, as some team members said, reinvigorating and motivating. There was a general sense of curiosity. The debate was healthy and productive. And most importantly, an in-depth look at the different projects that we are handling as a team and as individuals.

Besides the usual work-related stuff, the meeting served to set us up to go to the Moot with clear ideas of what we are doing, where are we, and what we want to do.

We went out for dinner, followed by a hilarious Escape Room. I won’t give you details to keep it short, but we divided the team into two rooms, and both groups escaped!

Moodle Moot Canada, the next morning, was very interesting. As you know, our Learning Management System ALEN, is an open-source platform based on Moodle. We develop custom technology to maximize the system and its management and deliver efficient workflow solutions.

Meeting people from all over who dedicate time and effort to this craft, including the Netherlands and Australia, was amazing. From teachers to government representatives and learning experts to innovative organizations looking for growth opportunities.

It was a couple of days focused on innovation, User Experience, Artificial Intelligence, and learning strategies and new software. I can tell you this, the new capabilities allow for an expansive experience with engaging features and simplified processes.

By the end, we were tired but satisfied. But we know it doesn’t end there. As a team, and as an industry, we want to keep on growing and developing technology that provides continuous solutions in an ever-changing world.

We strengthen our idea that collaboration and teamwork are the cornerstones of a nurturing business and the starting point of a growing team.

We learned that our ongoing quest for innovative purpose-driven technology is still strong. That we are in a really good place, and with many more discoveries to be made.

And that is the name of the game -To keep going. Like Frodo and the Fellowship, working together to face any challenge that comes up, and collaborating with even the craziest out-of-the-box ideas.

And as we head back to Ottawa, driving down the 401 and stuck in traffic, we enjoy the game, crank up the volume and sing out loud to enjoy the trip back home.

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