About a month ago, our Harmonizer-in-chief came to work and said: ‘’It’s official! I booked the Power Week!’’ Everyone was super excited and screamed ‘’Yeeeah’’! Only I was a bit confused but I managed to get some answers right away.
I moved to Bulgaria 3 months ago, after living 6 years in England where I studied and worked in Marketing and Customer Service. I came here with one goal. To start working for a company with a great culture and with a product I was inspired by and I believed in. A place where I could learn about all areas of marketing and be allowed to develop my skills and talents in areas I’m best at.
I came across Enhancv and created my résumé on their platform. I immediately saw the difference between my old and new résumé and I thought to myself ‘’I’d love to work with these guys!’’ I managed to grab their attention and joined the team two months ago. I have to say that I already feel like I really belong here. It is not only because everyone is so talented, helpful and easy-going. It’s mainly because they included me in all events and activities they do together from the very first day. (My first day was a Monday morning and I was invited to come for breakfast! We continue this tradition to this day.)
But let’s get back to the awesome Power Week.
So what is the Power Week?
The Power Week is a new concept initiated by a Bulgarian Startup one year ago and has not been properly explained yet. Independently, the two words are pretty clear. But contrary to popular impressions, the Power Week is not a team building event, nor a week filled with hard work and no play. It is actually a perfectly balanced combination of both. The main objective of the Power Week is to move your whole team into nature. To get connected with it, energized by it.
It is not enough to have a very cool office designed in a way that helps the team’s productivity. You need a change of the surroundings and the scenery, in order to be more productive. The team lives together for the whole week. To me, this brought a whole new level of integrity and motivation. It also brought new ideas to our company and product.
I am convinced that it’s the best method for being a more productive team, brainstorming new ideas, setting new goals for the future and becoming a more successful business, regardless of what stage it’s at.
Where/When to organize the Power Week?
At Enhancv, we chose the beginning of September when the weather’s still warm and everybody was present at work. Generally, we all enjoy the warm weather and the sunshine, therefore it was an easy choice for us!
When it comes to where*, *this year our company chose a housing complex in a small village, just about 15 kilometers away from one of Bulgaria’s most beautiful mountains – Rhodope. It was perfectly suitable for our team of 10. All we needed was a bed to sleep in, good Internet connection, a big enough room where we could fit together with all of our equipment (computers, speakers, whiteboards, etc.) and most importantly, beautiful nature as far as an eye can see.
The bonus was a swimming pool, the owner’s friendly dog Arthur and a big garden with a BBQ shed. We gathered there every evening to eat together, play games and talk about life. Generally, I got to know each team member better and learned their story. We became better friends and I know I can trust them more now.
What did we do during the Power Week?
Some of the activities we planned beforehand but some of them happened spontaneously. For example a lip-sync battle, where one pretends to sing while the music’s playing loudly. It was amazing to see everyone getting into the character of a particular singer, dance like them and act like them. It was the night I laughed the most!
Other night we cooked pasta together and discovered that one of our developers is an amazing chef! (He promised to cook his Carbonara in the office too!) Our conversations during the evenings included topics like ‘’Your most embarrassing moment’’, ‘’What would you do if you were named a CEO of our company’’ and others similar to these.
During the day we played pool volleyball to freshen up. We also drove ATV’s to get the adrenalin going. We climbed the ancient Thracian city of Perperikon, learned about its impressive history and enjoyed stunning views of Rhodope. Every morning we practiced Yoga, I never thought it could be so energizing!
The one thing, however, that I’ve experienced for the very first time was meetings by the pool and in the garden. Everyone could have a drink and feel free to speak whatever came to their mind. (Topic related, of course.) During those meetings, we came up with many new ideas, improvements and possible future projects. It was amazing to hear everyone’s point of view and endless creativity in some. We also included one-on-one meetings where we talked about current problems, recent wins and future goals we want to achieve as individuals in the company.
We also worked on our usual tasks but it didn’t really feel like work. There are no set working hours. If you feel overwhelmed, you can always jump in the pool or go for a walk to clear your head. When you come back to your tasks, you are ready to rock again!
What are the benefits and why is it important to your business?
For us as well as all the companies that have tried it, there is no doubt the Power Week is an essential and necessary event every company should organize at least once a year. Because it was such a game changer to our business, Enhancers actually organize it twice a year. Once in the summer and once in the winter.
This one, however, was my first and I must say that it not only helped deepen our company culture and values. It also got the critical creative ideas flowing thanks to the change of setting and break out of the routine. The environment simply helped bring the best in every team member. It created a space where all departments can be under one roof together and inspire each other with new ideas for the core business itself, the product, design and marketing efforts.
Most importantly, it helped erase any possible groupthink that has formed over time and thus brought missed opportunities to light. Believe it or not, we’ve accomplished much more during the Power Week than in any other regular week! It is exactly because of the perfect balance between fun and work. That is something you can’t achieve in a traditional working environment.
As I attended a Power Week already, I know that it has the potential to greatly increase the quality of the relationships inside your company and not only that. In order to list them all, I would probably need a second lengthy blog post. The most important ones, though are: employees get to know each other better and become closer to each other. This will make them collaborate more efficiently and reduce friction in the workplace.
You will, in general, get more work done. Many of your colleagues or employees will step out of their comfort zone to overcome things that were holding them back before.
Each person in the team will discover a new side to each other as well as themselves, they didn’t realize was there before. Finally, you will create so many new memories which you can always come back to and cherish as a team.
Generally, the Power Week promotes a flatter and leaner structure with less hierarchy. This, in turn, results in equity and a sense of achievement amongst your team. As I said, the positives are countless. I still smile when I think of our Power Week and I surely will always remember it.
If you consider yourself an organization that is looking for an alternative to traditional ways of working and regular team building events, the Power Week is definitely what you have to try!
Have you been to a similar event before? What were the best outcomes for your team from it? Share with us in the comments below.