Meet Maxwell. He is a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of PenguinMagic (#1 e-commerce niche of magic tricks goods in the US). In 2017 he spent a total of 3 months in Ukraine. Originally he just wanted to pay a short visit to the offshore development team, which was working on his startup: ProcessBoard. But eventually decided to stay for a while.
Before the trip to Ukraine Maxwell had traveled around 40+ countries. He saw poor and wealthy ones. So it seemed to me he was prepared for this trip 😄 When I was standing at Kiev airport waiting for him with a nameplate, I couldn’t find or recognize him. He was dressed as a typical Ukrainian guy and didn’t stand out from the crowd. Just a bit neater 😁
Next day we came to Khmelnytskyi, where our R&D office is located. I helped Maxwell to choose the right apartments for a couple of weeks (as we were thinking at that moment), showed him local restaurants. Soon we met the team. Everybody was excited to meet Maxwell offline. It was the first time when our US client visited our team, here in 250k city.
Maxwell had stayed here for 2 months, then had a quick business trip to the US, came back and stayed for 1 more month. His original estimate of time was failed though he didn’t regret it.
What captivated him so much that he didn’t notice how the time got away?
To start with, Ukrainian cuisine is a mixture of reach flavors, that can impress even the pickiest person. We are proud to have a unique cuisine, so when Maxwell asked for advice on what to eat, I didn’t hesitate. We started his gastronomic journey with our national symbol – borscht. Then – varenyky, deruny, banosh and so on. According to Maxwell, it’s worth trying. Moreover, he was surprised to discover the prices in the best restaurants. You can eat a plate of pancakes in the USA or at the same price have a complete breakfast, lunch, and dinner in Ukraine.
Visiting a new country isn’t a reason to forget about physical exercises. Maxwell wanted to keep his body moving so it made sense to find a gym to start working under the supervision of a professional trainer. Maxwell found the coach with a wide list of positive testimonials from all his clients and arranged gym sessions with him. Could you imagine how surprised we were when after a couple of training Maxwell told us that this particular guy was Ukrainian National Coach? This was a pleasant surprise both for him and for us, as we couldn’t even assume that a highly rewarded coach would work with you without overpricing.
When Maxwell was here, his business kept proceeding. Therefore, there appeared the necessity to think about marketing strategy. He had a prepared speech and needed to record the video to advertise his product. There was a local TV channel studio in our city so we decided to ask them for assistance. Journalists were happy to meet a cool American guy and to work with him. This cooperation led to a top-quality video material that helped Maxwell to reach a broader audience. Also, it’s worth mentioning that the price was much lower than he could ever expect.
Luckily, a lot of people in Ukraine have a conversational level of English, so there weren’t any troubles for Maxwell to communicate with people around. In addition, every member of our team speaks English (though we all have different levels). We all felt comfortable spending time together both working and having fun. No wonder we became friends.
While working on the web app, we decided to add a few new features which required filling in with the content. As Ukrainians salary rates are lower, we suggested approaching hiring local guy with perfect English. Maxwell doubted that we could find one but we easily accomplished this challenge.
I am glad that at the very beginning Maxwell contacted our team and chose us to be his development partner. During 15 month of cooperation, we managed to create an advanced app and gain a tight friendship. And, yes, we had a lot of fun when he was in Ukraine. But also we managed to work on the concept of his startup and add a few cool features to the app.
Take a look at the case study on how we have built ProcessBoard: a management engine for recurring tasks and ongoing activities.
These are not all advantages of spending time in Ukraine, but I’m not going to put all the cards on the table. Come here and see everything with your own eye.
And I can bet that your smile will be as broad as Maxwell’s.
To my mind, meeting with your outsourced development team is a good practice. It doesn’t matter whether they visit your country, or you visit theirs. Face-to-face communication always helps to make your relationships stronger and fully understand the goals and principals of the work.
If you have an idea in mind and questions about how to start implementing it, write us a line and we will be happy to help 😉