Make Hybrid Working Smoother Waza

Andrew Cox
October 27, 2022

This year's Waza was “Make Hybrid Working Smoother”.  Like all businesses we have moved from an office based workforce to a blended one.  With more people working remotely on a regular basis, we asked ourselves how we could make the experience smoother between those who are working from home and those who are in the office.

Remind me what's a Waza?

Waza is a Japanese word meaning technique. We use this phrase to emphasise that our Waza is about exploring good techniques — in code, in delivery and in collaboration and ideation.

Briefly it runs like this:

1: Each person pitches an idea based around the theme to the rest of the company.

2: Pitches are then voted on to form a shortlist of 3–5 ideas.

3: Teams are formed to work on each idea — meeting three times to plan and refine their idea.

4: Finally, the big day of building and fun! Teams have 24 hours to bring their ideas to life.

At the end of the time period, the goal is to produce some alpha software.

But it's not only about creating working software. Waza gives people the ability to practice skills that we might not get to use in the course of our jobs, and the opportunity to work with other people at EndGame that they may not ordinarily work with.

Want to know more? See this post about Why we do Waza.

So what were the ideas?

These were the fantastic teams that gathered themselves together around their favourite ideas from our 2022 Waza Pitches.

1 - Virtual office Space

2 - The stuff quiz (tuff Squizz)

3 - Improving information transfer - recording decisions

4 - Toolbox of new approaches

5 - Intentional social interruptions (donut with sprinkles)

We asked them to consider…

What’s your idea? What’s your 30 second elevator pitch?

Describe - How is this going to “make hybrid working smoother”?

How did you work together?

On to our 2022 Demos!

This is what our teams chose to build & why

First to demo was Virtual Office Space, responding to feedback that it’s tricky to keep track of where each of our team are without asking them to update their status in multiple different places. 

Second, with a plan to make the daily Stuff Quiz multi-player and friendly for our remote team, we had Tuff Squizz. Who incidentally also fixed and re-purposed the Chur Brew from Waza 2020 to show the Tuff Squizz scores above the coffee machine. 

Next up, frustrated with how difficult it can be to re-find information in our different channels of communication, particularly when decisions have been made, was Improving Information Transfer.

Toolbox of New Approaches aims to smooth joining in meetings when you’re working remotely, by offering some standardised templates for our teams to work from.  

Rounding out a fantastic series of demos for 2022 was Donut with Sprinkles (or Intentional Social Interruptions) who are connecting our people through a series of shared activities.

What a Waza of a day!

I was super proud of everyone and everything they achieved. It proved to me once again that I work with a high calibre of people.

At its heart, the Waza is a day where we come together and try to practice and learn in a new domain.

It allows us to engage with team members that are usually working in different squads or business units. And it lets us practice customer empathy by working through the process of an entrepreneur: from idea — to the pitch — to execution.

Through experimentation and exposure to different roles and technologies, we learn and grow as professionals. EndGame really values the Waza, as this process of discovery helps us serve our customers better.

If you would like to join the EndGame team or partner with us then drop us a line — we’d love to hear from you.

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