Announcing the 2017 Atomic Games!

It’s time for our third annual Atomic Games! This programming challenge provides a great learning opportunity for college students and a chance to interview with Atomic in a fun, low-pressure environment. We were delighted by student interest and enthusiastic participation in last year’s Games, and we have some key enhancements for 2017.

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Reflecting on the Atomic Accelerator’s First Year

I’m very excited to welcome our second Accelerator cohort this summer. This milestone provided a natural opportunity for introspection on the first year of the program. We’re very pleased with the expected–and surprising–successes of the program. We’ve also made some changes based on what we’ve learned from the first year. Read more on Reflecting on the Atomic Accelerator’s First Year…

Curriculum & Goals for the Atomic Accelerator’s Second Year

Cell Zero of the Atomic Accelerator: (l to r) Rachael, Andy, Dan, Alex

May signaled the start of our initial Accelerator cohort’s second year, and with it, a new focus for our curriculum. Our first year was packed with technical content, but recently, we’ve been reading books like Influencer, Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ, Coaching for Performance, Crucial Accountability, and The Five Dysfunctions of a Team.

During the second year of the program, we’ll develop four key skills: accountability, conflict resolution, mentorship, and leadership. We’ll work on each skill using both a personal and team perspective.
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Cell Zero Reflects on Their First Year in the Atomic Accelerator

Atomic’s Accelerator program (an accelerated professional development program for newly-graduated developers) is rounding out its inaugural year. That means the four members of Cell Zero will have completed their first year as Atoms, and Cell One and Cell Alpha (the next cohorts) will join our offices this summer in Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor respectively.
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Cell Zero goes to Ember Conf 2017

One of our Accelerator program’s goals is to make sure that our consultants are well-connected: in our company, in our community, but also in the industry as a whole. We go to great lengths to create opportunities for Accelerator members to get to know their fellow Atoms. Our cohorts visit local user groups and conferences.

We also like to attend a couple of conferences outside Michigan each year to meet folks from other parts of the country and learn what excites them. In this spirit, Cell Zero recently took a trip to Portland, Oregon, to attend Ember Conf 2017.
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Atomic’s Curriculum for Teaching Young Developers about Design

Created for recent Computer Science grads, Atomic’s Accelerator program is designed to supplement their development training and get them up-to-speed fast on higher-level consulting practices and skills. Participants in Atomic’s Accelerator Program make a commitment to study on top of their 40-hour work week, and they receive significant coaching and training in project management, team leadership, and handling customer relationships.

In recent weeks, I’ve had the fun and energizing opportunity to lead the design-focused portion of our Accelerator curriculum. Members of Cell Zero have been doing three to four hours of reading homework on design topics each week, complemented by two-hour discussions in which we unpack and distill our learnings.
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BarCamp and Strange Loop

It’s been a while since our last Cell Zero update, and we’ve been very busy!

BarCamp GR

Cell Zero (along with several other Atoms) attended BarCamp GR on Aug 26th and 27th. BarCamp describes itself as “an ad-hoc gathering born from the desire for people to share and learn in an open environment”. The conference has no pre-planned sessions and instead encourages all participants to sign up for a time slot and give a short presentation.

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The Extra Adventure™ Retreat

A few weeks ago, the members of Cell Zero all piled into a car with Carl Erickson and drove up to Crystal Mountain, where we spent Friday and Saturday climbing things, getting to know Carl and Atomic, and working some Extra Adventure™ into our usual routines. The trip was awesome, thought-provoking, and a great way for the Cell to get to know our new company.

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