It’s the end of a chapter I’m hugely proud of, that began all the way back in 2007, and the start of an exciting new chapter aligned with our dream partner and the ultimate home for our open source platform, WooCommerce.
From day one, WooThemes has been a distributed company with a remote-working team. ‘Based on the internet’, we say, but with a brick and mortar office in Cape Town, South Africa (where we’re registered). What’s the point of an office for a team spread far and wide? A fair question and to answer it, here’s the story of WooHQ.
As the name suggest it includes screen grabs of sometimes momentous, sometimes funny, sometimes not so funny, Hipchat conversations, photos of the team as we grow and do crazy things, interesting Skype calls we’ve found ourselves on and noteworthy submissions on our internal P2 site.
My “WooLove” folder is to ensure I remember all the little moments and moving parts that make up our business. It’s for my personal enjoyment and reflection (which is hugely important when looking forward) and something I hope I can one day print and plaster on my home office walls – showing the great ride WooThemes continues to take us on.
With the ability to work from home, as part of a distributed company, we often praise the fact that we don’t have to commute to an office. But sometimes the seemingly mundane daily tasks provide unexpected value.
I’ve been frequenting Surfer’s Corner at Muizenberg beach since late last year as my surfing addiction reaches new levels. Luckily, my Norwegian business partner, Magnus, shares my enthusiasm and over the past couple months (on his extended Cape Town visit) we’ve had many “strategy” sessions in the most scenic and inspiring office environment available.
December is known as the “Blogging for Benjamin” month at WooThemes. An initiative of Daniel Espinoza, one of our talented WooCommerce support ninjas, encouraging our team to represent WooThemes better through our personal publishing, and more importantly develop our writing and communication skills. The blogger with the most posts at the end of the month is the winner of a Benjamin (a $100 note).
My blog has been a ghost town for the past couple years and this initiative has really got me thinking about attempting to re-ignite my passion for blogging. All the while I’m very weary of over committing, having a turbulent relationship with this site that started way back in October 2005. A post about a VOIP product called Skype and how I’d been experimenting with it on an internet connection of 90kbps…
In 2010 my wife and I made the big decision to move back home, to South Africa. We’d been living in London for 4 years.
We set ourselves the goal of being back for the kickoff of South Africa’s FIFA World Cup 2010.
We made it home one day later than planned, but came home to one of South Africa’s most exciting, energetic, and happy periods of it’s recent history. It was a very memorable and significant life moment for us, and great reassurance we’d made the right decision.
On 13 June, at 5am on a wet and wintery morning myself and two friends were teleported to Valley Brewery in Noordhoek to brew South Africa’s first imperial red india pale ale, under the expert guidance of brewmaster, Greg Crum.
Andy specially learnt & performed this song for our wedding day. 3 years later, after much pestering he has finally recorded his version of “Lovely Tonight” by Joshua Radin, as part of his #carsessions, and made it available on YouTube, accompanied by a thoughtful, raw and honest post about his fear of failure on his website. Definitely worth a read.