3 Lessons Learned from the First In-Person Marketing Meetup at Storyblok

It’s Monday Morning.

It’s the first Monday after a week of many Firsts.

The Marketing team at Storyblok met up for the first time. The very first in-person meetup as a team.

Let me share my three lessons learned and what we did throughout the week.

1) From 3 to 30 team members in 2 years

In September 2020, we had 1,5 FTE working for Storyblok’s marketing team. Dominik hired two part-time marketers (Christel & Siavash), and I’ve joined part-time, too, making the 3 of us 1,5 FTEs.

Two years later, we are 29 colleagues on the marketing team.

And most of us traveled from Brazil, Chile, the United States, Canada, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Portugal, Spain, France, Poland, Cyprus, Greece, Russia, Netherlands, and Italy to Vienna, Austria.

Having grown from 2 to 30 within two years and seeing everyone live in person in one place feels incredible. Incredible because you realize that we‘ve gone a long way, but at the same time, we know this is just the beginning.

2) People are people.

Yes - there are no big surprises when meeting up in person for the first time at Storyblok. People are the same people, no matter virtual or in-person. Or, as my colleague Maria likes to put it: Meeting Storyblok colleagues for the first time feels like a high school reunion, in a very good way.
Having worked remotely before, I can’t stop being proud of a remote-first company that is not only able to hire great and very nice people but also able to retain them.

3) Ask, “What should we stop doing?”

As this was our first team meetup, we focused on getting to know each other, and what we do in our teams and roles.

In addition, I organized one session titled „Things we should not do anymore“. At first, some colleagues seemed slightly unsure about the topic and how negative it might come across. After a quick intro explaining that we also need to ask ourselves „what‘s working regularly and what not“ the team opened up and we soon ended up discussing and brainstorming things, we should change or stop doing.

When you put this question out there - in a culture of trust - people will bring up topics they‘ll find challenging and things they want to discuss.

The Agenda

Since I got the following questions around: “What were you doing throughout the week? How did you plan the week?” quite often, I‘d like to share our primary agenda with you here:

Monday - Travel Day

Yes, people travel long distances, and we don’t want their weekend to be taken over. (for early arrivals - co-working options were provided)

Tuesday - Social Day
On Tuesday, we started with a quick introduction breaking the ice, followed by an introduction to the marketing team and our role, history and key topics. Last, we continued with a personality test session, and some role plays. We ended the day with a Viennese walking tour that ended in a typical Austrian restaurant.

Wednesday - Team Presentations

Wednesday was packed with team presentations. Since the marketing team is very diverse in our role and the different topics, the main goal was to hear from the different teams and channel owners. What is the role of the team, the key priorities and responsibilities. Some teams also decided to discuss some key challenges they face and how we can solve them.

Thursday - Unconference

In complete honesty, Thursday was an experiment. I planned an unconference for the first time, and I didn't know what to expect.
An unconference is an open, participatory workshop event. It has a self-organizing character relying on the passion and responsibility of the individual participants.

Before flying to Vienna, we‘ve asked team members to submit ideas they want to discuss in 30min sessions. And since we got a list of 24+ sessions, we split the group into two different rooms, and for one full day, the whole team participated in topics ranging from a PR fireside chat, to the MACH Alliance, to TikTok, to Case Study processes to how to be more creative to… so much more.

Overall, I would call it a big success and can‘t wait to see all the new ideas and improvements coming to life.

Friday - Travel Day

Again, Friday was a travel day, and everyone who planned to stay longer was able to meet up for some co-working.

Well. And that's about it.