Innovation is like a smoothie, it’s always better when you combine a variety of ingredients. At Mutual Mobile, we decided to mix our brilliant developers, expert strategists, obsessive designers, meticulous project managers, and multitude of passionate professionals together for an innovative occasion we’ve dubbed, Blend Day.
Blend Day? It sounds delicious, but what is it?
Blend Day is a special time when we ask our employees to put aside their day-to-day assignments, get to know their colleagues a little better, and tackle some problems in need of creative solutions. Everyone from coders to the finance department join forces for eight hours of brainstorming, camaraderie, and an outrageous after party.
How does it work?
1) Breakfast debriefing
The day began in the break room, where all Mutual Mobile employees were invited to feast on breakfast tacos and an assortment of Jamba Juice smoothies. Once the crinkling of tin-foil wrappers and slurping of straws had lessened to a dull roar, it was time for everyone to break into teams.
2) Teams unite
The teams were divided amongst topics submitted by our employees: connected home devices, pet and kid trackers, music apps, amusement parks, and even innovations in ping pong, to name a few. After employees found their team, it was time to begin the Design Studio portion of the day.
3) Design studio
The Design Studio process usually takes around three hours and results in hundreds of great ideas, giving the teams plenty to think about as they munched on their lunches. With bellies full of deli sandwiches and brains full of creative concepts, it was time to begin the hackathon portion of the day.
4) Hack attack
During the hackathon, developers, designers, marketers, strategists, and employees from every department rolled up their sleeves and helped bring the best ideas from the Design Studio to life. From functional prototypes to pitch decks worthy of the hit ABC TV show Shark Tank, everyone got their hands dirty.
After employees put their brains through the grinder, they were rewarded with an after party full of gourmet food, chilled beverages, and a variety of entertainment to get their weekends off on the right foot.
What’s the main takeaway?
During the two weeks after Blend Day, teams periodically meet to polish their prototypes and put the finishing touches on their presentations. Then it’s time for the Town Hall, where each team shares their invention with the entire company.
From the communal breakfast, to the final pitch, Blend Day proved to be a great way to protect what makes our company great: our people, our culture, and the never-ending pursuit for compelling, innovative work.