Krzysztof grabbed the opportunity to join Workable in 2016, on the recommendation of a friend.
Based in Athens he works closely with his team-mates in Boston and Australia.
Where were you born?
I was born in Poland. When I was 20 I moved to England. I worked for a bit, then I moved to Scotland to study linguistics at Glasgow University. After that I moved to Norway and then the Netherlands. I was settled there, I had a job and a little flat. But I never liked cold weather. Rain, grey skies and so on. My dream was to live in the south of Europe – in Greece, Italy or Malta. I came across a job advert asking for Polish speakers to come to Athens, so I said: “Ok, let’s give it a try!”. They bought me a one-way ticket to Athens. I quit my job. Gave up my flat. Packed whatever I could into some boxes and left. I came here thinking it would be for just a few months, but I’ve been here ever since. I don’t think I will ever leave, I love it.
Describe yourself in three words:
Curious, positive, impulsive.
Do you have a nickname?
In addition to my real name (Krzysztof), people call me the 10 or so different versions of it (such as: Chris, Christoph, Christopher), its many spellings and even more misspellings.
What did you want to be when you were younger?
When I was about 7 I wanted to be a paleontologist. When I went to high school I studied sciences (biology and chemistry) and was getting all ready to study medicine. Then something switched in my head and I became interested in language. I ended up studying linguistics.
What was your first job?
When I was 20 I moved to England and got a job in a nursery. Plants would arrive from the Netherlands. My job was to put them into pots and make sure they had the right conditions to grow. On my first day they asked me ‘Do you know what a pansy is?’ I didn’t! I had never heard of any of the plants. I needed to start from the beginning. I must have learned about 100 different plant names in English in my first week (I can still remember a few of them).
What do you do for fun?
I like the outdoors, cycling and swimming. Also, discovering new places and re-discovering old.
What’s the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done?
Hitchhiked for a few days across several European countries.
What do you feel strongly about?
Peace and justice.
Do you have a favorite food?
Pasta, by far.
If you had a catchphrase what would it be?
“Let’s give it a try!”
Describe your role at Workable:
I help our clients with any issues or questions they may have about our products. I do this by any means possible, but mostly by talking to them or on email. I do it because I like the satisfaction I feel when I know my advice helps.
When did you join the company?
1st June 2016.
How did you find out about the job?
A former colleague started working for Workable. She told me there would be an opening in a support role. She had so many good things to say about Workable, I didn’t think twice. I couldn’t believe it. It sounded like a little piece of heaven. I try to grab opportunities when they present themselves and I knew I had to give this a try. I had several interviews. The interview process was different from other jobs I’d interviewed for – it was genuinely a great experience.
What made the hiring process such a great experience?
Everybody was so friendly. They asked unusual, interesting questions, stuff that really made me think. This made me relax. I felt I could really be myself, which was good because I wanted them to know me and what they can expect from me. I can honestly say that the experience was wonderful. Very professional, very welcoming, and very accommodating.
Describe your first day:
When I came to the office what impressed me the most was the atmosphere. I had a really warm welcome from everyone. Learning how to use the coffee machine was one of the priorities that day!
So, what’s the “Workable atmosphere” like?
It’s focused and professional, but relaxed at the same time. It made an impression on me when I came for my first interview and it’s still something that I enjoy very much. I will tell you this… in our team we can work from home one day a week. I rarely take this opportunity. This says it all. I like coming to the office – I like interacting with my colleagues. Everybody is extremely busy, but we always find time to have a bit of banter – at lunch or over coffee. The person I have most interaction with is Natalia who I sit next to. We’re both Polish so we can quickly communicate in our own language. We laugh a lot. At everything. We try to help each other as much as we can, and this means a lot. Everyone here is really open, we can discuss things with complete honesty.
Describe your team:
We’re a small team, but we’re getting bigger! We’re spread across three continents: Europe, North America and Australia. We work hard, but we try to have fun too.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I think it would be my colleagues and the fact that they’re so dedicated to their work and so good at what they do.
What or who can you see from your desk?
I’ve got the Parnitha Mountain on the horizon to my right, Natalia and Myrto to my left and ahead.
What’s on your desk?
The bare essentials - just a knitted pattern saying ‘0 days without sarcasm’! I plan to put a plant on it one day.
Is there a highlight of your day?
There is genuine excitement when lunchtime comes. We do have really good food here. Everyone has lunch at the same time. I found the notion a bit strange when they told me. “You eat together? That’s weird.” But it works, and it’s a good thing. Because otherwise I would never have the chance to talk to some of these people. You stand in the queue, you chat to the person behind or in front. Sit down to eat with another group. In the sun, out on the terrace. I love it.
Who in the company has had the most influence on you and why?
Vasiliki Iliadi was my mentor when I started and she was I think the most amazing person I have met. She has enormous knowledge. She works very hard and is extremely ambitious. She’s also the most helpful person I have met. She invested in me so much, personally.
The best thing about working here?
As a place to work it’s amazing. I love the fact that the company is growing and constantly changing, it opens up many opportunities and brings interesting challenges. There’s a sense here that everything is possible. You’re encouraged to follow your interests and find out about different teams and how they work. Vasiliki is a good example of this. Not long after she trained me she moved over to the Engineering team to take on a project management role. I was happy to see her go in the sense that I was really happy for her progression. She’d been studying for this outside of work. This was her chance to move into a new role that allowed her to use her new skills and knowledge. She loves it.