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Christoph Fahle
October 8, 2013

Artful interventions and cultural hacks by PoDojo

Wondering what got born in the innospace on our 4th floor in November 2012?

Back in the summer last year, Stefan Haas was just holding the workshop about Cultural Hacking when he met Catherine, the girl with the same interests as he has - the passion for artful interventions and cultural hacks which improve the world of work. Since then they've been developing the community and blog to share stories with like-minded change makers and business pranksters. In November 2012 they initiated the PoDojo learning community of fearless Product Owners at the betahaus | Berlin which is growing since then.

Why such a name?

The mission of PoDojo is to create the “place of the way” - dōjō - to experience and learn the skills of product ownership. Here you will find regular training events, weekly Product Owner chats with practitioners about things related to agile product discovery, planning, development and product ownership.

The main PoDojo events which take place at betahaus are 3 days of intensive workshops, where product owners gather to learn the art of being an agile product owner which is far beyond just Scrum. Here you will experience what it takes to lead a team with the vision towards developing great products over the long term and with purpose. When you'll join the training, you'll be exploring customer needs iteratively and with empathy, sustainably, flexibly and fast - while having fun! Being a part of a specialised community is priceless, and therefor participants have a priceless chance to broaden their skills via being part of the #PoDoJo Sensei community network.

Did the story get you?

Check out more on www.podojo.com and visit us for the upcoming free event!

Check other insightful articles and continue reading here!

Toni: Currently, we’ve somehow ended up in this niche of building a lot of internal tools for startups and teams. But this is not the only thing we want to do. What I like about it is that we’re starting projects from scratch and we have full control over them. 

Martin: The first project we worked on was a tool for a large scale real estate development company. What they needed was a tool for their Sales people - to be able to mark their different spots and locations at different stages of the sales funnel. So we created a tool that helps them in this process.

Toni: And this one actually served as a starting point for the tool we’ve developed for  betahaus, which aims to allow the Sales and Management team to see which team rooms are occupied right now, which ones are free or will be occupied in a few weeks or months, so no double bookings appear. 

Alex: These two projects were more focused on real estate, let’s say, but we’ve also done more design-heavy projects like the one we did for Artique which is an online artists agency. For them, we built a whole website and an online system to present their artists starting only from their logo. It had to be very flexible, because the artists needed to be able to edit their own profiles, putting their resume, changing colours.

Toni: Honestly, we have skillsets that you don’t usually find in developers. Because we've had lives that were not just about computer science. I think to some extent this is what makes us different. 

Martin: I believe one of the reasons why people pick us over other studios is because it can be very hard working with developers. If you’re not understanding their work, if the communication is not flowing, you, as a client can feel lost. We're easy to communicate with and we’re always open to feedback and we're open to discuss anything. In the end, after all iterations, if you say we need to start the website from scratch and that you don’t like the idea, we won’t take it personally. 

Alex: Also, I think, since we all work as coding teachers, we are officially qualified to explain what coding is to people who don't code, which is actually really rare because a lot of developers, as Martin says, don't want to, or literally just don't know how to articulate what they're doing. Whereas we are trained in articulating what it is that we're doing, why it's meaningful and why it takes a certain amount of time.

Photo by Lea GK

Alex: Zimt & Mehl - the Turkish bakery around the corner. It’s just soo good.

Martin: Oh, there is this Italian restaurant called Ristorante del Arte

Tony: Oh, my God, this place is so funny. It looks like a pretty average Italian restaurant, but the whole interior design inside is just decorated in such a weird way. The entire place is covered in frescoes. They have crystal chandeliers and Easter bunnies. Some Greek columns. It has a different name on the menu, on the side and on the Internet. And it was an ex-shoe-store.

Want to get in touch with Obst Digital? Come around betahaus | Neukölln and meet them here or send them an email to contact@obst.digital !


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