Throughout February 12.-14. Profico decided to open its doors to students of Faculty of electrical engineering, mechanical engineering and naval sciences (FESB). It turned out to be fun and engaging way, not only to show students “the secret ways” of a modern design and development agency, but to get to know some of our potential future colleagues a little bit better as well.
Since this was the first time we were organising student visit in this fashion, we decided to implement something we were actually good at – lean software development approach. Essentially there are 3 key steps of delivering a successful problem solution while trying to “be lean”.
First you think about the end users potential needs and requirements. Based on these assumptions you define features and select those that are strictly required at a minimum viable product level. Later on, you move to prototyping and the entire process carries on as you plan, learn and adjust along the way.
So how do you implement this within the event such as Profico Open Day?
Students hate boring speeches
You start off by identifying user needs and requirements. In this particular case we were trying to guess what do students actually want. To be honest, it was a lot easier to rephrase this question into what do students hate? We assumed they were tired of boring old-school corporate speeches or classic company pitch stories. On the other hand we had to mention our company somehow while giving a brief overview of everything we did around here without sounding boring.
What to talk about?
We approached this problem by clearly defining topics we were (not) allowed to talk about. Then we’ve split students into two groups. The first group was (un)lucky enough to be sat in the bean bags with our very own board of directors (how non-corporate of us having a “board of directors” 🙂 ). And although we explicitly gave them guideline bullets on what to talk about, they somehow ended up talking about Elon Musk and his digital space race.
The second group went with some of my colleagues (including myself) into the conference room to talk about the things “we haven’t learned at colleague”. With this in mind, I would like to thank Goran, Davor, Ferenc, Ursa, Kiki and Pero for participating and sharing their experience. We literally talked about everything. From how Davor and Ferenc began their careers as Android and iOS developers all the way to the story about how Goran, lovely husband and a father of two, became an office party animal/jukebox. Ursa was trying to wash-off his bad rep of handing out difficult exams to students, since he knew the majority of the students from his student assistant days at the same faculty
After about half-an-hour the students were asked to switch places. Group number two was sent to the bean bags to learn something more about the digital future and professional traits that were treasured by their future employers/bosses, while the group number one arrived to hear our side of the story.
Pizza for the win
So 3 days, 6 groups, 50+ students and what did we learn? It doesn’t really matter what you say as long as you give away free pizza. Probably one of the easiest way to spark conversation and mingling is to gather the whole company and students together, while supplying everyone with endless amounts of fast food. Before you get all judgmental, the company strongly supports healthy lifestyle and nutrition, but who can say no to pizza?
To wrap things up, it was really fun to present our company culture in this way. Remembering our first steps, things we might have done better, numerous office parties we’ve thrown together and all of the other stuff that turn our jobs here at Profico into a workplace that looks good but feels even better. As for Profico Open Day 2018, we promise to make it even better. Stay tuned for more.