Insights: Recap of First Presence Week in Berlin

Tags: , , Published On: 12.04.2022

At the end of March, CrossLend employees from six different offices – Berlin, Frankfurt, Vienna, London, Lisbon, Luxembourg – kicked off a week of festivities at Potsdamer Platz, in the heart of Berlin. Presence Week, CrossLend’s inaugural corporate get together, was a great opportunity to welcome new joiners – more than 20 in the last six months – and for remote-based staff to finally meet new and established team members and senior management in person. There is a special energy when a group of people meet face-to-face and this verve continued until the closing day, when staff enjoyed dinner and drinks together.

CrossLendians enjoying our cultural day, including our improvised ping-pong tournament

There was a lot to celebrate between the hiring of Sven Möhle as Chief Sales Officer, formerly Director of Sales at NYSE-listed FinTech Broadridge, and Frank Haering, who recently came on board to provide support as the company’s Executive Strategy Advisor. Frank joined us from JP Morgan, where he held the position of Managing Director. Presence Week marked a great occasion to welcome new senior appointments and to communicate internally our road to further growth in the area of digital solutions for financial services. The two deeply experienced joiners will spearhead international expansion in high potential markets.

Between town hall meetings and workshops, some of the central themes explored were cross-functional, including a deep dive into how teams from other departments do their work. At CrossLend, we encourage cross-functional teamwork both structurally and culturally. The aim is to break through the antiquated silos of traditional organisational structures so that individuals can understand our overarching mission – to transform private debt into a more efficient, transparent, and profitable space – and for staff to realise that they play an important role in achieving that goal. By working together cross-functionally, problems can be solved by utilising different viewpoints, expertise, and backgrounds. And, as an international organisation, we are lucky enough to have this assembly of individuality – the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Our team presents The history of IT development at CrossLend across the past 6 years and its dependency
on Product Vision/Team Structure

Throughout the action-packed four days, which included a trip to an escape room, several employees asserted that while they appreciate having the choice to work from home, the move to a hybrid model – alternating between in-office work and remote working – is the most favoured long-term option. However, in order for teams to share knowledge, engage in mentorship, and spark creativity, the need for meetings to take place in-person was emphasised again and again, especially among new joiners eager to learn from more senior employees.

Different social activities took place during the Presence Week such as Jump House, Escape Rooms and much more!

A key insight that was observed throughout the week was that people miss working on problems with other people in a face-to-face context. It was further commented that a lot of body language and soft communication gets lost in translation on Zoom and can be frustrating for team members. Many employees felt that in person events like Presence Week, of which three more are planned this year, were a good opportunity to get to know people on a more personal basis. These events are also a lot of fun, and people have missed this social element of working, where the focus can shift from being purely about work to getting to know people in a more personal way.

Our IT team ends the Presence week with an IT Townhall meeting to discuss future projects and trends

We look forward to the next iteration in the coming months. If this sounds like the kind of vibrant workplace you’d like to be part of, take a look at our careers section for available jobs in your city.

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