Meaningful Work Means No More Daily Grind

Pardeep Chahal3-Minute Read
PUBLISHED: January 19, 2022

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Having worked in a few different industries and companies both small and large, I’ve come to realize having a job is not enough. Once a job is only a job, it’s a grind. Many people I know talk about their work this way, some of whom count the days to retirement.

A young friend of mine, who has just started his professional career, has an app on his iPhone showing a countdown to the number of days to his retirement. The current total shows he has over 10,000 days to his retirement, at which point he can start enjoying his life.

This was a scary thought to me, as my friend was using this for motivation to push himself through his work week. I can understand this feeling of being stuck in a job that is a chore, but thankfully, I don’t feel this way.

How I Got Started With Rocket Innovation Studio

Prior to joining Rocket Innovation Studio (RIS) earlier this spring, I had been working for a smaller company for a few years in the Fintech space as a full stack developer. Although I really enjoyed my co-workers, I was getting the feeling of it being just a job.

That job was also fully remote, but unlike Rocket Innovation Studio it felt remote and isolated. I was looking for a true team environment, where we get to work together with other team members and collaborate and learn.

Fast-forward to April 2021, someone forwarded me an article about a cool tech company in Windsor. This piqued my interest, but I quickly realized the location would be a problem, with the office being on the opposite side of the country and in a different time zone.

 A few days passed, and oddly enough I received a message from a recruiter. He mentioned they were looking for remote developers to join their team in Windsor, Ontario. I took a second look into RIS and Rocket Companies®, and I was surprised to learn Rocket Innovation Studio was operating like a startup inside a larger group of companies.

The Culture Matters

I truly believe culture is at the top of the list when it comes to work. A few things stand out for me about the company culture here, such as work-life balance, collaboration and professional development. My favorite phrase from our team leader is “No Pressure.” To me this says everything.

This and the company ISM, “We’ll figure it out” go hand in hand. It speaks to the culture here. You’re supported by your teams and everything feels like a team effort.

Work-life balance is often talked about but rarely achieved. It’s clear to me – Rocket Companies gets this right. I’ve felt this to be true in only the few short months I’ve been here. As a team we are encouraged to “take a break, go for a walk and recharge.” Further, Rocket Companies provides many team building events. This breaks up the workday and it’s another great way for team building, especially if you are fully remote.

I feel I can achieve a healthy balance by meeting deadlines and continuously improving, while still having time for family and hobbies. Professional development is actively encouraged at RIS and Rocket Companies. There are too many learning opportunities to list here, from weeklong Hack Weeks throughout the year, company lunch and learns, to the various online learning platforms available.

The Timezone Hurdle

RIS does a good job of fostering a hybrid work environment of on-site and fully remote workers. Living in Vancouver and on the opposite side of the country, I was a little worried about the 3-hour time difference. It turns out this has worked quite well for many reasons.

First, I find I’m most productive in the mornings. By the time lunch rolls around, I have most of my important tasks tackled. My team and team leader at RIS have been very supportive and accommodating in this area, to the point it is a non-issue.

At this point I'm not sure if I would want to go back to the regular workday hours. Starting early opens up my entire afternoon and it’s really a positive. I think at many companies the time difference could be a big issue, but the teams at RIS have made it work and I would recommend it to anyone on the fence to give it a shot.

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Pardeep Chahal

Pardeep is a Software Developer at Rocket Innovation Studio. He graduated from the Simon Fraser University with a bachelor’s in computer science. His interests include soccer, volleyball and home DIY projects.