It began in the Spring of 2015, with a 24-hour hackathon. 19 Blue Medorian developers would eat breakfast together on April 9, code throughout the night, and tell their success stories at breakfast the next day. The goal: to remind Blue Medora developers what they were passionate about. They would be able to dip their fingers in different technologies and coding languages, collaborate with team members they don’t work with on a daily basis, to work on employee project ideas.
These ideas, which aren’t typically allocated time during the normal Blue Medora work day, are the main focus of the event as long as they are loosely related and benefit Blue Medora. The projects range from a fun FoosTracker application to track statistics for the company’s foosball tournaments to a dashboarding system that the company would eventually bring to market.
Well… the 24-hour Medorathon proved to be a challenge. The group made it til 3am, and by that time most were either playing back-to-back foosball games or taking naps on (or under) their desks. That brings us to a more realistic, present-day “Blue Medorathon:”
Yesterday marked a fourth occurrence for the Blue Medorathon with 27 employees participating, trading day-to-day projects and ideas, and fitting two days of product work into a marathon of employee collaboration. The event isn’t limited to the developers at Blue Medora, in fact, support and product team members also joined in on the fun. Halfway through the day, Blue Medora bought lunch for all participating from the company-wide favorite restaurant: Thai Chef.
The event, which begins at 8am and concludes around midnight, allows an hour for “show and tell” before everybody heads home for some much-needed sleep. The number of projects from the first Blue Medorathon to yesterday’s event has more than doubled. More than half of the projects worked on have turned into viable products, though we haven’t found a market for the FoosTracker, yet! Blue Medorians’ motivation behind signing up for this quarterly event isn’t so much the day off (though it’s a nice incentive), but having the chance to try and develop something they wouldn’t normally have the chance to. And if you get stuck on a particularly stubborn issue, why not play a game of Foosball or Rocket League to get the juices flowing?
Some would ask “why”? Because, it’s Blue Medora. That’s why.