Visting Berlin had a different flavour to it this time. It involved not only closing Q1 and planning our next quarter, but also welcoming two new team members to the MARCOM team—Whitney and Anja— and introducing our new Finance and Operations Lead (CFO).
The first part of the trip was quite intense. We’ve gone through the numbers of our first quarter— all were positive, and shown great growth— and we also planned our next quarter, and had a chance to interact with our Board members—mainly about our Unlikely Allies event in Seattle that will take place at the beginning of Q3 2016. The meetings at this level are quite intense, and require a lot of focus. I can honestly say that by the time we reached day three, my energy levels plummeted to pretty much zombie level. Somehow I made it through, so I am happy. :).
What I enjoy most about these meetings are the people. It is very different than my last position, when meetings were dominated by one dogmatic view, and ideas were not floating in a positive way. I find this type of approach to be poisoning not only on a productivity level, but also on a personal level; it simply shuts you down. In any case, this post is not about ranting :).
After a week or so in Berlin, I managed to take a few days off to go see my family and friends in Israel. The flight from Berlin to TLV is quite short, so it made sense to me to catch an overnight flight (literally :-/) to go spend a few days with them. Seeing my family is always great, no matter how short the trip is. I managed to see all of my siblings, and some of my cousins and uncles too (we’re very much a middle eastern family when it comes to family; we stay very close).
The highlight of my trip, however, was meeting with my 9th grade teacher, Orly. This person has changed my life back when I was 15 year old by helping me believe in my abilities, and in myself. I had quite a tough time in Grade and Junior schools, and I was very much close to being “kicked out” of the school-system because the teachers thought I wasn’t good enough to learn anything. This teacher, Orly, saw my potential and managed to guide me—in a very socratic way, I must say—until I was able to find the true me. It took me 22 years to realise this, and I’ve been searching for this teacher’s address for the past three years so I can thank her personally. This year I managed to get a hold of her phone number, and planned a meeting with her in a nice cafe in Rehovot. It was an emotional meeting for both of us. She was very touched by what I had to say, and for me it marked the end of a long journey.
I also managed to meet some good old friends from my childhood (Boaz, Tal, Maya, Uri), so that was nice as well. It is always nice to catch up, and witness the changes that time brings on all of us.
The last stretch of the three-week-business-trip also involved welcoming two new members to the MARCOM team. I know I promised to write a post about “how to build your marketing team,” but I honestly did not have time yet. The good news, however, is that I already started the first draft.
Back to the new team members. Yes, the last stretch of the trip was quite intense as well. Making sure to go over every piece of the MARCOM funnel is not an easy task, and involved a lot of meetings and talking. Having said that, it does make things simpler when you do it with smart people, and these two new members certainly fit this category.
Overall I had a good time, but I must say that three weeks is a long time to be traveling. I can take a week, or maybe 10 days, so I’m hoping that next trip will be much shorter.