In our second Spotlight interview article, we sat down with Jana Kirkman to learn more about what she does and how she approaches organizing our teambuilding activities.
You work in the Operations vertical at datasapiens. Briefly describe what you do.
Operations is extremely versatile, especially in a set up like ours. I spend a lot of time with invoices and receipts, organizing events, dealing with multiple suppliers and business partners and of course cannot forget my best friend Excel.
Every day is different, and the key is to stay organized. And in good graces of our friendly coffee machine (it keeps me alive).
In the past year, what was the one thing you learned, and are proud of?
The one thing. That’s a hard one.
datasapiens is a more remote-focused company than I have worked with before. This has meant that I have had to learn how to use a lot of new software. Which has been challenging for me at times.
Also this past year, the whirl of lockdowns and restrictions has definitely taught me patience.
Where is your favorite place to be?
Favorite place, there are so many, but generally as long as I am with my loved ones, I am happy anywhere.
If there is sun.
Are you a “work from home” or an office person?
I think a combination of the two is the ideal way to go, at least for me.
Working from home means I have almost 3 extra hours in my day that I would normally spend travelling to dedicate to the hobbies I picked up in lockdown. But traveling and seeing other people also reminds me that although things have been changing and for a while it felt like it had stopped, life continues.
It is truly encouraging to see how adaptable people are and their willingness to sacrifice some personal freedoms for the greater good.
In the past, we’ve had some incredible teambuilding activities. Of course, due to covid, they were mostly online in the past 18 months. Where do you look for inspiration?
Wherever I can. Online, asked the team for inspiration, linkedIn was also very helpful as people did not hesitate to share their experiences with online events.
We make a point of having our cameras on for all work-related calls (not a lot of companies do for some strange reason), which I found is essential for online remote socializing. So, over the past year we have had casual online chats, bonded over being remotely invited to our colleagues’ homes, ventured into the world of online gaming and even remote drinking 😀.
We have recently had a face-to-face social event after many months of lockdowns and restrictions. How did you enjoy it? 😊
It was lovely to meet in person again as most of our team is at least partially or fully vaccinated, we opted for a casual barbecue and a friendly yet competitive game of cards. While video conferencing is perfect for work collaborations and although we have had some smashing online events; social interactions are far better face to face.