Greetings from Uganda! The first day of our 2017 Team Meeting (Monday, March 27) was dedicated to team building, learning who does what, and passing on strategic information on the status and direction of our activities. Plenary presentations from each of our teams gave us a fantastic overview of what we all do, and we also squeezed in an intriguing introductions game and a few coffee-break chats to get to know each other better. We end the day with a greater sense of direction about key topics, and even closer as a team.
Below we bring you a photo roundup. We will be publishing highlights from each day of the meeting, so watch this space (or follow us on facebook)!
Following a quick overview of the agenda from our Director Jean-Marcel Ribaut, the day really began with our hosts from Makerere University. Paul Gibson and Richard Edema were present to bid us a warm welcome to Uganda and to open the meeting. We also got a great insight from them about how they use the Breeding Management System in their work.
Plenary theme 1, presented by Jean-Marcel Ribaut, gave us all the big picture as he spoke on IBP general status and direction.
Our second morning session began with an enjoyable introductions game organised by Communications Manager Valérie Boire, in which we shared some very little-known facts and discovered that among us are hitchhikers, foodies, bird watchers, dance aficionados… and even-takers apart of clocks! The team had to guess which quirky hobby or strange experience belonged to whom… sharing plenty of laughs and getting to know each other in a fun and informal way. (And in terms purely of points, Graham McLaren, Mariela Laborde and Julian Pietragalla were our winners!)
Kicking off our worldwide tour, the Africa and Europe team presented on strategies, current activities and plans for the region in plenary theme 2. They were led by Graham McLaren (Global Deployment Manager), with Gorgui Alioune Mbow (Regional Deployment Manager for West & Central Africa), Akinnola N. Akintunde and Corina de Luna Habito (both BMS Support Specialists) also speaking (pictured in that order), supported by the rest of the team: Mable Mulanya, Magni Bjarnason, Manilal William, Trushar Shah, Brice Ndri and Hermann Some.
After lunch, in plenary themes 3 and 4, we heard more on strategy, current activities and plans from the Americas team and from the Asia/‘Datalive’ team. The Americas team was represented by Julian Pietragalla (Regional Deployment Manager for Latin America), Shawn Yarnes (Regional Deployment Manager for North America), and Fernando Rojas (BMS Support Specialist), while for the Asia/‘Datalive’ team Stewart Andrews (Commercial Manager), Abhishek Rathore (Technical Coordinator), Robin Wilson (Breeding Consultant) and Clarissa Pimental (Data Manager/Training Specialist) presented. Look out for Griselda Marquez (Executive Assistant) keeps everything running as it should, too!
Coffee break was a chance for those all-important chats that let far-flung members of the team catch up with each other – plus a few finishing touches to the last presentations of the day. Although we did catch one or two folk monkeying around…
Plenary theme 5 came from the Development team, on team structure and the “scrum” process (more disciplined than it sounds!). They were represented by Mariano Crimi (Product Manager, speaking), Jan Erik Backlund (Development Director), and Mariela Laborde (Systems Analyst).
The day ended with a return to the big picture and a final plenary from Jean-Marcel on organizational dynamics, covering our organogram, decision-making and sustainability. We rounded off with a general discussion, reviewing and drawing conclusions from the day.
Photos: Valérie Boire and Julian Pietragalla