Life & work
Fall in love with Poland – the story of Laurent from France
How long have you been living in Poland? When did you come and why Poland?
I first came to Poland just after finishing my studies because I wanted to discover Europe. I worked in Gdańsk for three years and met my future wife there. We went back to France for six years and four years ago we decided to move to Warsaw, mostly to help my wife develop her career.
Had you heard something about Poland before you came here? Did it turn out to be true or false?
I knew almost nothing about Poland before I came here. My vision of the country was inspired mostly by the “Marzi” comic book which tells the story of a little girl living in Poland during the communist time. I did not know what to expect and what impressed me the most back then was this mix of the communist past (that you can see in some shops and restaurants like "Bar mleczny") and hyper-capitalism (for example brand new malls).
How did you find your relocation process?
Relocation process was very easy for me. It took me just a few days to find a place to rent andI could always count on my friends or colleagues to help me with some administrative formalities.
Could you tell us a little bit about your work experience? What has your career path looked like so far?
I started off as a web developer in a web agency in Gdańsk, working mostly for French eCommerce websites. Then I joined different companies as a senior developer or tech lead, mostly in the area of web development, but I also have experience working with an IoT (Internet of Things) company.
I joined Westwing a year and a half ago as Tech Lead for one of their teams dealing with CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools.
What is most satisfying about your job now? What are you looking forward to?
The most satisfying part of my job is the team and the fact that there is a generally good team spirit between all employees at Westwing. You really feel that people here genuinely care about you and are always ready to support you, if you need it. What I also like about my job is the opportunity to face technological challenges. We create systems that are meant to handle a lot of requests and at the same time we always try to keep them up to date with the latest best practices in the industry.
What is the role of your team in the company? What are the biggest challenges facing your team at the moment?
My team is responsible for CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools and especially managing communication with our customers through emails, newsletters, notifications. Our task is to ensure that information about our customers' newsletter subscriptions are synchronized with all Westwing applications.
What helped you most in the process of adjusting to work in this new environment?
My wife who is Polish helped me the most, especially when it comes to dealing with all administrative formalities. Westwing’s HR department has also been super helpful whenever I’ve had any questions regarding Polish labour law.
What do you like most and least about Poland?
I really love how green this country is. Even in Warsaw you have huge parks and trees everywhere which is really nice for kids. If you go to the countryside, you will see really nice big green forests.
For me the long winter nights are the biggest drawback. I’ve never got used to how early the sun sets in winter and I always count down the days until summer at this time of the year.
How is your Polish??
My Polish is quite bad. I can understand some conversations but cannot make grammatically correct sentences.
What is your favourite Polish word?
I love this swear word used by children: “Motyla noga”, I find it so cute. And when I want to show a difficult word to pronounce to my family or French friends I usually choose the word "Wrzeszcz" (a part of Gdańsk).
Do you have a favourite place in Poland?
I love the University of Warsaw Library, especially its roof garden. It is a very relaxing place with a nice view of the Vistula.
What advice would you give to your friends who consider working in Poland?
Be curious, there are lot of nice things to discover in Poland.
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