Last Thursday and Friday I had a privilege to attend the inaugural Stretch conference where a dozen of speakers shared their experience, approaches and stories about scaling companies, teams, and people. The conference was a big success with plenty of interesting talks, excellent presentation styles, and engaged audience. Some of the more interesting (besides Andrew Clay Shafer's which I already introduced on Friday) I'm presenting in more detail. Michal Lopp of Managing Geeks and Being Geek fame has presented a compelling story of stables and volatiles and how you need both in order to be successful.
Sarah Novotny described how junior staff, who start their careers full of curiosity, will eventually grow in disillusioned and bored employees unless senior staff isn't actively building culture of learning.
Sari van Poelje had a very interesting talk all in itself, but what really made her special is how effective she was at activating the audience. I got to talk with everybody in the radius of a few meters, which is not a small feat given that Hungarians are not very outgoing people.
Finally, we got to hear the story of EPAM, from their humble beginnings as a small vendor of programmers' bodies all the way to their listing on NYSE. A path that Hermes Softlab could have eventually traversed, if it only would have more capable founders.
Big kudos to Gabor and the rest of the organization team. You've done a great job!