Let the game begin! The very first ‘BuzzPing Cup’!
Lunch time at Buzzvil was filled with shouts of joy and regret these past two weeks. The very first “BuzzPing Cup” was the cause for the gleeful ruckus during the lunch break. Here are more details on Buzzvil’s first table tennis tournament that took place over ten days and 30 matches from late March to the first week of April.
1. What’s a mobile ad company doing playing ping pong?
If you’ve ever visited Buzzvil, you’d remember seeing a ping pong table in the middle of our biggest conference room. Some visitors have been skeptical whether it really is a ping pong table. This very unique table actually shares a long history with Buzzvil.
The ping pong table has been with John since his days at Post Wing, a copyright monitoring startup. Since then, it followed John around to iCreative (an education contents creator startup) and xMonGames, until it returned to Buzzvil in 2013. The table has been a de facto company treasure since then, so much so that we even designed our conference room dimensions to accommodate the table when we moved over to our current office at Seokchonhosu in 2014.
It was on this table that less than a dozen founding members worked countless hours, held meetings, and conducted interviews. Of course, the table also served its true purpose for ping pong matches. To our members spending time together at the company 24⁄7, ping pong not only keeps us modestly entertained but provides the opportunity to get to know each other a little better. There’s a reason why our co-founders including Young seem to have a particular knack for ping pong.
Incidentally, there have also been CEO-to-CEO matches between John and Young in the early days. Apparently John often lost sleep over his utter defeat at the hands of Young. Nowadays, there are other Buzzvilians that can hold their ground against Young in ping pong, and we sometimes find the look of sheer joy and wistfulness on John’s face whenever he sees Young lose a game.
2. Buzzvillians create our own company culture
At Buzzvil, we do not have a top-down corporate culture, but rather a shared culture shaped by all our employees. Many times, the elements of our company culture and customs come from the pure desire to share the things we like, such as study time during lunch to various company club activities, including the ping pong tournament we had last week.
At Buzzvil, a wide range of interests are shared and talents are donated.* We have sports events like BuzzBall (soccer), BuzzPing (ping pong), BuzzTennis (tennis) and BuzzRun (running alongside the Seokchon lake). We have study groups for Photoshop, mechanical studies, Excel, and Japanese, for those interested in learning new things. We also have clubs for things more applicable to daily life, like hand drip coffee and cooking. Anyone can join in any of these activities, as long as they are interested.
* The study groups are led by Buzzvillians with the most experience and interest in the field.
These groups not only serve to help improve each individuals’ capabilities, but also provide an opportunity for our members to get to know colleagues they otherwise would not come across often at work due to difference in fields of expertise. Moreover, these activities add a little zest and fun to life at work, underpinning the advantages of having the employees create our own company culture. In fact, this is when one of our core values, “Relationship,” finds its way so naturally to our way of life at Buzzvil. It is also when we learn to trust and respect others to become good team players.
3. And so begun the first Buzzvil ping pong cup!
Ping pong at Buzzvil is infamous for alluring even the most novice players. Whether it’s late at night or during lunch breaks, you can hear people eagerly shout and cheer through ping pong matches. Apparently over time, your body automatically reacts whenever you see a ping pong ball if you’ve invested enough time and sweat into all those ping pong matches.
Elia, our Business Intelligence Manager, spearheaded the hosting of our very first Buzzvil Ping Pong Tournament. Like the PES tournament we had a few months ago, the ping pong tournament was open to any interested Buzzvilian. The tournament actually operated according to a rather sophisticated system.
17 Buzzvilians participated in intense matches for two weeks. To ensure fairness, the participants were divided into three levels according to their proficiency. The middle and beginner levels were awarded base handicap points. The players were then split into four groups for preliminary league matches, and the top two players from each group went up through the quarterfinal playoffs in tournament style.
Like all sports matches, or tournament was filled with unexpected turn arounds and excitement. The most feared contenders were knocked out during the preliminary matches to the regret of many fans, while a few dark horses took everyone by surprise. And one particular dark horse continued her upset into the finals.
With her lips firmly closed in determination and eyes sparkling ambitiously like Katniss Everdeen the Mockingjay from the Hunger Games series, Joyce braved through the champions Michael, Eric, and Evan and made her way to the finals. You can see how intense the final match was between Joyce, the champion of our first ping pong tournament, and Michael.
In appreciation of the members’ passionate engagement, John even brought his treasured bottle of whiskey as the final prize. Erin created an award certificate that outshone the Buzzvillian Award, to the great amusement of Joyce. What started off as a voluntary effort to find the little joys in life at work, the “BuzzPing Cup” ping pong tournament created many happy memories for all Buzzvillians. A hearty congratulations to Joyce for her new reign as the new queen of ping pong at Buzzvil!
Congrats Joyce, Buzzvil Ping Pong Champion!
- #People & Culture