Monday Morning in Romania

by Jobbatical August 02, 2015
Bogdan Pop via Flickr

And the never-boring life at an accelerator.

In our exploration of Monday mornings around the globe, we at Jobbatical have asked creative people from Berlin, London, and Barcelona to share their mornings with us. This week, take a look at a Romanian Monday through the eyes of Mara Bujor.

Ana Maria (Mara) Bujor — Operations Coordinator at Spherik Accelerator

Mara Bujor — Cluj, Romania

When she is not in charge of making things happen at Spherik Accelerator in the lovely city of Cluj, Mara invests her time in the others things that make life great: reading, training preparation and delivery, and of course, traveling. Especially in the Balkans, where home is just a state of mind.

Waking up in Cluj.

I hear the alarm. I definitely need an aggressive ringtone.

I drink my pot of coffee. Plenty of milk. No sugar.

After checking my keys, phone and wallet two or three times, it’s time to take the tram. I live at one end of the line and my workplace is at the other end, so this gives me quite some time to catch up on the latest book I’ve started. One has to find ways to enjoy the rush hour, right?

I start this particular Monday by going to a meeting at the Technical University. Luckily, I can walk from the tram station. On my way, I enjoy the morning breeze before the heat sets in and watch the local artisans preparing their homemade products for sale: honey, traditional blouses, ceramic, they have it all.

Artisans preparing their products in the market in heart of Cluj

I see a young man approaching a woman, most likely to sell her something: “Do you have a moment?” She declines politely and leaves. I hear an older salesman explain loudly: “No closed questions, no closed questions! You’ll never get them this way.” I guess entrepreneurship comes in all shapes and sizes.

Jumping into work.

Energized by the short walk, I am ready to discuss the future program developed by Spherik Accelerator. Our organization provides young teams from Transylvania and beyond with mentorship, training, office spaces, networking opportunities, pitching practice, and much more; right now, we are in the process of planning and designing the new program.

The Spherik logo — painted by local artists based on calculations made by local entrepreneurs

After a productive discussion, I finally get to the Spherik headquarters. This is not my regular Monday morning, but that is because there is no such thing as a regular Monday. Being part a small and determined team means job descriptions are overrated.

Any of these could happen during a Monday morning — building a birdhouse, discussing with the startups over coffee or preparing a surprise party for a colleague going abroad.

Pleasant Surprises

So far, my Mondays have included: hammock installation, meetings with VCs from all over Europe, painting tables, cutting 300 stickers manually, workshops on customer acquisition, BMCs, creating a complete marketing plan, taking interviews of prospective entrepreneurs, chasing an injured pigeon through the office, researching the startup market in neighboring countries, keeping the dog quiet before going to the vet, pitching practice until 11 PM and being up at 7 AM to prepare the venue for a workshop led by Jon Shieber, senior editor at Tech Crunch.

During some lucky mornings, I encounter one of the friendly neighborhood cats, which is one of the small pleasures of life.

Confusing? Maybe, but this is why I love being the operations manager at Spherik. I know all of our efforts are directed towards providing the necessary support for great people, people with ideas that can actually solve everyday problems. Making 3D printing accessible and efficient, bringing e-medicine to Eastern Europe, crushing bureaucracy with technology — all of these are in the making and I am here to help. And remind everyone not to leave dirty coffee cups in the kitchen.

The Spherik me-time zone. With hammocks

As Mara clearly shows, Silicon Valley and NYC aren’t the only startup hubs worth getting to know! See what else the world has to offer.

Keep exploring more global cities with our Monday Morning in… series.

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