Life at Starred is our new blog series which puts the spotlight on our fantastic team. We’ll check in every so often, and it’ll be many things - diaries, interviews, our thoughts on the world, sharing expertise - but the focus will be on showing off our lovely people and culture. First up is one of our recent starters in our dev team, Aimi, sharing her experience of moving from Greece to join us in Amsterdam.
Deciding to live and work in a different country is certainly no easy task. I was born and raised in Thessaloniki, a big port city in the northern part of Greece. Having already been in the area of web development for some time, I decided to learn a little more about the opportunities and life offered abroad. Friends of mine have been living in the Netherlands and this small (yet already advanced IT) country caught my attention. I decided to visit the country as a tourist first. I wanted to see and judge for myself what it has to offer, what I could possibly offer it, and whether the working environment here would help me achieve my goals - both personal and professional.
Visiting the Netherlands, I liked the relaxed yet productive environment that I came across in so many aspects of life. Already after only a week’s holiday I started realizing all these small details that can make your life easy, pleasant and less stressful. I loved how the Dutch could achieve things and still had time for personal pursuits and interests. When it came to decision time - between a stressful life full of uncertainty and moving in the Netherlands - it was an easy choice.
My first step was looking for startup companies with vision and potential. I had already worked in e-commerce, so Starred’s mission really spoke to me. The core idea of ‘making feedback great and fun again’ is a simple one, and yet, so many people forget its importance.
The whole process of approaching, having interview and providing Starred with code samples was actually fun, despite what most people think of these procedures. This was mostly because I was totally fascinated and aligned with the companies mentality, straightforwardness, good communication and their laid-back approach with an emphasis on getting things done.
My first day at Starred was awesome. To help welcome new people, another colleague voluntarily offers to help out with everything. The colleague assigned to me showed me around, explained how the coffee machine (and many other things!) work, what the common practices are in the company, where the closest supermarket is, how I can easily order my furniture after my recent move etc. In this way I felt like I was still at home, in a comfortable environment where I can be extra resourceful and happy as well.
Working at Starred you’ll find a lot of challenges, cooperation and communication, but also a fun and positive atmosphere! You won’t find big egos or negative people here. More than just providing a cool working culture, life at Starred is really enhanced by our after work culture: going out, chatting and drinking beers all together, playing arcade games - these are regular activities in our calendar. We also organize other fun and educational activities for everyone to follow; Heineken experience tour, Amsterdam tour are to name only a couple.
Looking back, I believe that coming to the Netherlands to live and work was one of the best decisions that I have taken. Working in Starred is one of the most interesting and valuable opportunities that I have come across in my life, giving me space for both professional and personal growth without taking out all the fun! Thank you all guys :)
Life at Starred is also on Instagram, where we photographically document our love of cake (among other things).