At Automattic we all are a distributed workforce – we all work from all over the world. Every few months we meet up with our teammates and work on projects designed to be started and finished within the week. Once a year the entire company gets together in one place and we affectionally dub it the “Grand Meetup” (abbreviated GM). This year, we all met up in Park City, Utah USA at the Grand Summit Canyons Resort.
We do a lot of things at the GM. Primarily the GM is meant to be a restorative time to emotionally connect with our peers. This comes in the form of group lunches and dinners, flash talks, recreational outings, and just sitting on couches talking over a coffee or beer. Since we don’t often get to see each other (especially those of us who don’t directly work together) this is a chance to establish the inner voice we have that represents someone’s online persona. When we see each other online after a GM, we can emote better because everyone has gotten to know our personalities.
We also are required to pick one of three things to do for real work during the GM: work on a project (to be assigned), work on your day to day project if you need face-to-face time, or participate in a learn-up group (teaching or learning). I ended up choosing to teach a class on iOS development to seven other coworkers. It was fantastic. Almost everyone submitted a pull request to WordPress-iOS by the end of the class.
I didn’t take a ton of photos at the meetup but here are some of my favorite: