After my very last recruitment call, the time slowed down. Even though it's been just a few days before I received the decision, I couldn't stop constantly refreshing my email box. And, oh my god, I eventually saw the awaited message. Joining Netguru was my big goal, so I don't need to describe how proud and happy I was when I saw the offer. The curiosity level went high immediately when I started to think about the upcoming adventure - how does it feel to become a new project manager at Netguru? And here I am to tell you what my first week looked like.
I decided to take a month-long break between quitting my previous job and starting the new one. Here is my advice to everyone who is changing jobs - take a good rest before starting. Allow your brain to get rid of the former company, clear your mind, and enjoy some free time. I traveled a little, but any kind of rest is great.
The first day at the new company was closer and closer and I felt ready to act like never before. A few weeks before the onboarding day I got an email with the schedule and details about the first days at Netguru, which made me feel secure and well informed. Also, I received the names of my leader and mentor who would support me during my first months in the company. It was great to know what will actually be happening, so I could prepare myself for every upcoming event.
The first day
The first day always takes place in the Netguru HQ in Poznan. I live in Cracow, so I traveled there a day before the onboarding and spent one night in Poznan. You don't have to if your city is closer than mine and you can make the whole travel for one day. Fortunately, the Community team took care of all the logistics, so I didn't have to look for a hotel or train connection. The onboarding started at 10 AM with a presentation about the company's culture and values, which also covered the about perks and benefits in Netguru, included some security workshops, and finished with a photo session! The community team also ordered lunch and showed us around the office, which is totally marvelous!
The second day
Although everybody can work remotely in Netguru, for the second day I was invited to the Cracovian office just to meet people, receive my access card, and learn how to use some internal office related tools. It was a bullseye since it was a Wednesday, which is also known as Sweet Wednesday in Netguru offices :)
My mentor reached out to me and we had few calls. During the call, I received lots of tips, explanations, help, and support. I've been provided with an onboarding checklist with lots of useful information and tutorials which helped me learn or get a refresher regarding key knowledge and tools (Jira, Salesforce, Github, etc.). The amount of available materials is huge and I am very impressed by it. Fortunately, I have some time to catch up on it before I actually start on a project. I have to admit that the long onboarding has a lot of advantages. I am a person who doesn't have much experience working in big companies (I worked in a small software house in past), so I always had to learn everything on the fly and start working immediately, which has always been quite a stressful experience. At Netguru new PMs (no matter what seniority) usually have at least two weeks to get to know all the tools, learn the processes and understand values, meet your team, set personal growth goals with the leader, etc. before starting work on the first project.
The third day
During the third day, we (all newbies) were invited to join a call with Marek Talarczyk, who is currently taking the role of CEO of the company. During the call, Marek introduced to us the biggest Netguru clients and told us about the challenges and goals of the company. Later, we could ask the questions and share feedback. The most valuable item I understood during that meeting is that the company is very transparent and the transparency gives me the feeling that I can reach out to any person in the company and I will always be listened to and supported.
The rest of the week
The rest of the week was calm. I had the ability to join my mentor’s project and to see how the agile ceremonies are facilitated, how the development team works, and how the communication with the client is handled. I’ve been invited to my mentor’s project in “ninja” mode, which means that I’m not actively working on the project but rather observe the workflow. Every morning we connect for the standup meeting and speak about daily progress. I received access to the project in Jira, so I could see all the tickets and tasks created. I also could see how the PM prepares the weekly review, demo, and other product meetings. Other important project management activities I took part in were invoicing, iteration retrospective, and sprint planning. It was not an issue to involve me in communication with the client so I could see how the team communicates everything (both good and bad things) to the client and on what the self-organization in that specific project leans.
All of this gave me an understanding of how my work will look. There are lots of interesting webinars and Happy Hours happening almost every week at Netguru which I joined with pleasure too. A Happy Hour is an initiative when specialists in a specific field share their knowledge with Netgurals. During that session, you can share your case study, ask for advice and support, or receive some materials to study. During my first week, I joined one related to risk management, and another one was related to working with xternal developers.
Most of the people I’ve met were very friendly, welcoming, and went out of their way to help me. I also paid attention to the fact that Netguru enthusiastically shares knowledge no matter whether you are a software engineer or an account manager, there is enough for everybody! Speaking from experience, the connection between these two factors is very important and I am very thrilled to be working here. What will my first Netguru project look like? Who knows, maybe I will let you know in my next blog post :) Stay tuned!