Happy and healthy people behind WPML and Toolset plugins – Part III

September 24, 2020

OntheGoSystems believes “happy people make great products.” To help keep our team happy, we encourage a healthy work-life balance that features excitement, discovery, and delight.

To help with this, OntheGoSystems provides a scholarship fund for each employee to pursue something interesting to them outside of work. This could be something they’ve always wanted to try, a passion they’d like to build on, or learning something new – it’s up to them!

Let’s see how some of our Toolset and WPML teammates chose to use their scholarship funds this year!

Lauren did a headstand on water

Lauren, from our WPML support team, has used the scholarship program to become certified in different formats of teaching exercise over the last few years. She says this has helped her work-life balance and personal development by getting her “in better shape, and it allows me to connect with many people that I wouldn’t meet normally.”

Lauren is “onboard” in the middle of her yoga training

Why did you choose paddleboard yoga this year?

I chose this because I love being outdoors as much as I can, and combining two things I love (teaching yoga and paddleboarding) allows me to share this practice with lots of other people, many for the first time.

How do you think the scholarship adds value to your life outside of OTGS?

I wouldn’t be able to learn this new practice if it weren’t for the scholarship program. It also allows me to take my son out on the water, and even my husband has a SUP board now, so the whole family can be out on the water together.

Lauren enjoying some time with her son, Gabe, on her paddleboard

Do you have any new plans or hobbies that the scholarship could support?

My latest hobby is paddling, and I would love to learn more about using a drone so I could capture some great video while out on the water :)

Lauren doing a headstand

Diego banged on the drums

Diego, one of our WPML supporters, rediscovered his passion for music during the coronavirus lockdown. After playing guitar for a few years, he decided to learn a new instrument – the drums – and enrolled in an online drums course.

Diego’s equpment is ready for his drums lessons, and practice

Why are you happy about having taken the drums course? 

I discovered a very pleasant and fun instrument to play, and also a great way to relieve stress. It is a great exercise for the brain and also for the body (I heard that 1-hour playing drums in a show uses up to 400-600 calories).

How do you think the scholarship adds value to your life outside of OTGS?

I have always liked music since I was a teenager. And I am very happy to return to study. It is really cool to know that we have support to learn new things and invest in an activity that we like.

Do you think that scholarship activities in general help achieve work-life balance and find new ways for personal development?

For sure! Doing an activity we like and learning something new certainly increases our well-being, self-esteem and personal satisfaction, which also ends up impacting our work.

Do you have any new plans or hobbies that the scholarship could support?

This was a very cool experience, so I would like to use it with anything related to music (maybe piano/keyboards).

Kasia soared in the clouds

After getting a taste of the excitement of taking to the skies with a previous scholarship activity, Kasia leapt at the chance for more. Here’s what our Toolset and WPML UX designer told us about her paragliding course.

So exciting! Having a paragliding experience for the very first time.

Why did you choose paragliding?

Last year I jumped with a parachute and this was the first time I felt the true excitement from being in the air. I decided to do more of that! My friends told me that paragliding is even better because you can actually stay in the air and not only jump and land, so… I enrolled in a paragliding course right away. 

I am super happy that I have taken it. The views from above and feeling of the air on your face. This gives me a feeling of pure freedom. 

How do you think the scholarship adds value to your life outside of OTGS?

Thanks to the scholarchip I do not have to think twice about exciting opportunities. I know I have extra money for these adventures and I can simply go for it.

The scholarship definitely helps achieve work-life balance. The fact that we share our ideas on spending this money additionally gives me constant inspiration on new exciting activities to try out.

I do not know yet what I will do next year, but I watched Lauren’s SUP yoga and this is something that I would definitely like to try. So… Maybe a new SUP next year? :D

Happy after her exiting exprience, Kasia wants more flying

Do you have any new plans or hobbies that the scholarship could support?

I still have some scholarship money left and I plan to spend it on Dutch lessons. I recently moved to Belgium and it would be super nice to be able to understand people on the streets ;)

Laura focused on inner growth

Laura, a member of our WPML support team, decided she would always use her scholarship fund on something she’s interested in but wouldn’t do otherwise. This has allowed her to experiment and find new, continued interests. This year, she chose to focus on her inward journey by enrolling in a personal growth membership program.

Why did you choose a personal growth program for your scholarship?

I’ve been into personal growth for a while now. It all started back in 2011 when I took my first yoga class, from there I started being interested in things like meditation, mindfulness, minimalism and so on. Personal growth is a bit of an umbrella term for all this stuff.

The program I’m attending is structured like this: every month there is a different topic and an expert does a masterclass about it, plus there is a bookclub (related to the topic), guided meditations, a planning session etc. It’s interesting because there is more variety in this way. Since personal growth is an ongoing process, it’s good to see how many different aspects it can involve.

It’s Laura’s own time for her perosnal growth

What is your personal growth membership program like?

The program I’m attending is structured like this: every month there is a different topic and an expert does a masterclass about it, plus there is a book club (related to the topic), guided meditations, a planning session etc. It’s interesting because there is more variety in this way.

They call it “a gym for personal growth”, and I quite agree with this. Personal growth is an ongoing process, so it’s more about getting good habits than following a course with a beginning and an end.

Would you recommend the program to your peers?

The exact program I’m following is Italian only, so most of my colleagues wouldn’t be able to follow, but I’d recommend anyone to start reading something about personal growth.

Sometimes it’s not an easy process – you need to deal with internal blocks, ovestructures, and often not everyone understands what you are doing. I learnt not to stress and worry too much about things, to better manage my money and I sleep a LOT better. And I’m quite sure I wouldn’t be working here if I hadn’t started thinking about my personal growth :)

Scholarships in years past

This article is the third part of a look at what our employees do with their scholarship funds. You’ll see some familiar faces from this article in the links below. We think this goes to show the importance a great work culture can have in keeping star employees happy at work!

You can catch the previous two installments of this series here: