September 21, 2023

Atolye15 Homecoming: A Journey Back to Our Roots

A four-member rock band performing on stage, illuminated by colorful lights, with the silhouettes of dancing fans in the foreground.

At Atolye15, we're more than just a dev team; we’re a close circle of friends. Over the years, we've built a culture that transcends borders and embraces the freedom of a remote work lifestyle. But, despite our love for flexibility, there's nothing that replaces the energy and warmth of coming together under one roof. That's why we decided to organize an unforgettable gathering at our HQ, and we called it 'Homecoming.'

Homecoming was a multi-day event full of work, play, and everything in between. Day one was all about working side by side, something we didn't realize how much we missed until we experienced it again. After months of communicating through our laptop screens and the dings of Slack messages, the ease of face-to-face communication was a true relief! Sure, there’s the undeniable productivity of in-person work, but it was more than that. It was about feeling the pulse of our team right there, sharing the same space. There was a unique buzz of energy in the air, a feeling you only get when the entire team is together.

As day turned into evening, we had a 'happy hour' that truly lived up to its name. We ate, we drank, and we jumped right into the kinds of deep conversations that Zoom calls just can’t capture. We reconnected on a level that’s hard to achieve through a computer screen. It's these special little moments like cracking jokes and sharing a laugh, that elevate us from being just coworkers to being a real team. And these are the times that really matter because they keep our culture alive and strong.

A group of people working in the office, playing games, and enjoying cupcakes during happy hour.

After opening day two with a 'breakfast of champions' – because a day that big deserved a grand opening – we headed towards an awesome destination where the real party would begin! The setting was a breath of fresh air. After months stuck to computer screens for virtual meetings and chats, stepping into this natural paradise together felt like hitting a much-needed 'reset' button!

The party finally started, and we feasted like royalty! Glasses were clinking, toasts were flowing, and let's not even get started on the singing! Our dance skills also got some airtime, showcasing moves that would make even the pros a little jealous. For those who've been rocking the Atolye15 vibe for years, this was a throwback to the good old days – a nostalgic reunion. And for our new squad members experiencing their first Atolye15 party? Well, let's just say we showed them how it's done, Atolye15 style!

And if being together wasn't reason enough to celebrate, the day also marked our 14th birthday! We definitely made sure to raise our glasses extra high for that milestone. In an industry where everything's always changing, standing strong for 14 years is a testament to our resilience, our talent, and most importantly, our culture. So Homecoming’23 ended up being a dual celebration. And we couldn't have asked for a better occasion to look back at what we've achieved and get excited for what's next!

A group of people playing balance board games, dining at a long table, delivering speeches, and dancing near a stage with a live band.

All in all, this Homecoming wasn't just another event on our calendar. It was a celebration of what makes Atolye15 special – its people, its culture, its spirit. It was proof that despite the distances that separate us or the screens that sometimes confine us, our bond is unbreakable. It’s like the HQ is our anchor, a place that holds a piece of each of us, no matter where we are in the world. That's why coming home, even just for a few days, felt like hitting the refresh button on our collective soul. Catch all these special moments and more in our recap video here!

As we look forward to Atolye15’s 15th year, we carry with us all the fun, connections, and reawakened spirit of this Homecoming. It's been a reminder of the importance of occasionally gathering in the same physical space to celebrate, reflect, and simply be together as a team. And hey, it sets the bar pretty high for next year, doesn't it? ;) Stay tuned!

Özge Uğuz

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