It’s also the second birthday of Jensen und Komplizen.
by Corina Jensen, Jennifer Pfahl, Riko Neveling and Björn Jensen
Monday, 1st of February 2021. Hamburg. Rain again. Rain? Rubbish! Snow. And ice. And… Riko’s birthday! In the background, the cake is taken out, cut and eaten. The birthday cake is already on the table, so if there are crumbs in this blogpost, you know where that’s coming from. But that’s not the only reason to celebrate! t’s also the second birthday of Jensen und Komplizen. So the champagne that Corina put in the fridge a year ago can finally be … erh… disposed of…
Let’s take a look at two years of “Jensen und Komplizen”. (You can read more about the first year here.)
Corina: We are very happy that our company has been around for two years now and that you have accompanied us during this time. While there were only two of us who started with a single vision, we have experienced rapid growth. In the meantime, there are four of us as a core team and our network of accomplices has grown to 13 in the meantime. It was the nice encounters (unfortunately often only virtually) and the great cooperation that made us strong as a community and organisation.
In Björn’s and my shared history (for almost 18 years now!!), there have been extreme but also exciting times, especially at the beginning of new phases in life.
This also applies to JuK (short for Jensen und Komplizen). First of all, there has been the challenge with the current Covid-19 situation – suddenly everything has changed. Trainings as we knew them – on-site – no longer exist. When we returned from our family holiday in March, we had to develop a concept for virtual trainings within just one night. Moreover, during the lockdown period in spring 2020, we quickly realised that we were very much reaching our limits in terms of the size in our beautiful little office. And I believe it was fate that we found what we were looking for in the heart of Ottensen almost without searching. We’re in the new office now since August and we and our mascot Nava (our dog) feel very comfortable there. Feel free to drop by for a coffee or a chat when it is possible again. We even have the option of organising our workshops there for a limited number of participants.
Riko: A year ago, on the occasion of our first birthday, I brought a cake to the old office. I guess we’re having it virtually this time. This fact actually describes two fundamental things that happened this year. A move to new office and yes, of course, the pandemic. Due to our hands-on mentality, according to the motto “there’s no such thing as impossible”, we have accomplished a lot in this special year, tried out many new things, implemented a lot and accordingly learned all the more. The cake is shared by four this year, because since summer we have been a team of four with Jenny. So there are many reasons to start the new JuK year with great anticipation.
Björn: Fortunately, the cake is no longer in the fridge (unlike the champagne) ;).
2 years of Jensen und Komplizen – how do you feel about that?
Björn: Well, what can I say. Two years…crazy. The whole journey was very exciting right from the start. It all started when Corina set up her own business with a friend to offer further education in a certain field. And since I was also facing change, it was now time to think about how to position myself. Generally speaking, starting a business together as a couple and parents is not without a certain explosiveness…however, we did very well in the first year and started the second business year in good spirits. Then came the advance payment of taxes… and Corona.
Jenny: 2 years of Jensen und Komplizen, crazy! Where has the time gone? When I heard that Corina and Björn had started their own business with Jensen und Komplizen, I probably wouldn’t have believed that two years later I would be part of the team myself… but luckily things can turn out differently than expected!
Björn: That really was a perfect match. We were looking for professional support in translating our website and that’s how we started the whole conversation… and true to the IKEA principle, it went on: “Discover the possibilities!
Jenny: Haha that’s right, we’ve done a lot since then. Only the website is still not translated 😉
Corina: What I think of first is the word PRIDE. It was and is a cool time. I think it’s unbelievable what we have already achieved and will achieve in the future.
What are your highlights from this time?
Jenny: For me a highlight were definitely the days we spent together in the new office last summer…in August that was still possible. At the moment everything happens virtually. But whether remotely or live, it’s great that you can make jokes and laugh together. No one ever said that you can’t have fun at work…
Apart from that, we as a small group of four have been able to do some really cool things lately!
Riko: The move to our new office! As much as I liked the old office, the new premises have brought a breath of fresh air.
Björn: That’s right, Riko. The move came just at the right time – with much more space than before (from 15 to 80 square metres, two rooms, etc.).Nice conversations due to our “Open Door” policy – when we have our doors open, people are always welcome to come in and talk to us. 🙂 That’s also how we got to know other coaches and trainers. When we bought our training equipment of flipcharts and metaplan walls via eBay we met Holger, who is also a coach. Meanwhile he has also become one of our accomplices. There are two things in particular that stick in my mind: “Elmo!” and “Is the dog there?” – the things that you hear when the entire crew of the nursery walks past our office window. And the moment when four kids (one girl and three boys) knocked on the door and entered the office wide-eyed before the start of a training session… “Are you a YouTuber?” they asked. “No. Why?” I asked, because now I was curious. The answer came with a pointing finger – at the green screen on the wall. We talked about YouTube and Deadpool and the little ones said goodbye with the words: “Invite some real Youtubers over – it’ll be cool!” And so they stopped by every now and then to chat. 🙂
How has JUK developed from your point of view? What is important to you? What is important to you?
Björn: In terms of content, our second year is very exciting. For example, we are increasingly accompanying organisations on their journey towards agility again and the free consultation service is also a success. Our mentoring has started off very well and the 6-month learning journeys are something we also believe in in addition to the standard trainings. The highlight for me here was offering mentoring/coaching to become a Certified Scrum Developer℠ (CSD®) – more of a matter of the heart for me as a software guy. Personally, there was also a lot in it for me, since I don’t travel that much any more. But we had to get used to one another again first. Once the family machine works without the old man, he suddenly gets in the way when he’s home all the time 😉
What happened last year?
Riko: After I wrote my bachelor’s thesis at Jensen und Komplizen, I finally joined the JuK team officially.
Björn: That was also an exciting topic. Perhaps you would like to write something about it later in another blog post…
Riko: A nice resolution for the next year 😉
Jenny: As I mentioned, I joined in August, just in time to be welcomed in the new office.
But I think there was something important… oh yes, that Corona thing! Kind of hovers over everything.
Or what do you think? Maybe you’ve had a completely different experience!
Björn: For me, the time we are currently experiencing is not only a crisis. It also offers opportunities and chances. If we look at the topic of “solutions for distributed work”, there has hardly been such a strong push in any other area. And the old “credo” that distributed work is not possible has been reduced to absurdity. It does work. Of course, with all the challenges that go with it. But it is possible and certainly a good thing. It always depends to a certain extent on the people themselves…
Jenny: Yes, exactly. Sometimes you have to be forced to try something new – and then you see that it’s not so bad.
What is the outlook for next year?
Jenny: What almost everyone wishes for is probably a step towards normality beyond Zoom and FFP2 masks – to finally meet people in real life again, be it in the office or in workshops. And there was something that had to do with the translation of the website… Apart from that, I think it’s exciting to wait and see what else comes up that we might not have seen coming before.
Björn: As I already mentioned, I think learning journeys are very appropriate for the current situation. And I think that the virtual trainings will still be relevant later on and we will keep them in addition to our on-site events.
Corina: I would like to give the topic of mindfulness and stress management more space at Jensen & Komplizen. Especially during this time, I have noticed how important mindfulness and the related topics such as concentration, clarity and focus are. I notice how much calmer and more relaxed I feel since I meditate on a daily basis again. I would like to share this with others. n addition, a good life-work balance is a goal for us, which unfortunately often came up way too short. I am also looking forward to finally being able to organise our trainings in our own office rooms, be it a ScrumTale game night or other workshops.