Blog: My first open circle at Jos

Geschreven door Salsabil Fayed op 23/03/2020

“Salsa, what did you do to your hair?”

Team van Josworld rond een tafel


I came from a big multinational where looks are everything and where standing out was not a norm. Where the goal was high sales and low salary costs. Where your job title and the numbers on your paycheck become your first priority. Nothing wrong with that of course, but a job title and a classic company structure can do something with you. The funny and extravert ‘me’ slowly disappeared to make space for someone who was more at work than at home. I was becoming a workaholic. Still I tried to be myself. By wearing funny socks or by changing my hair color as often as my socks. But that wasn’t enough. I felt myself drifting away. 

Five years and a burn-out later, I decided to take a U-turn in my life.  Find a challenge where I could express my inner creativity and inner self without holding back. I felt limited by my job title. And could not take it any longer. Boring and old-fashion two words often linked with my job. It could not be further from my personality.

The quest

I stumbled onto Josworld during my search for something new. During my first job interview the words “open circle” first popped up. Heuh, Open what now? I was expecting a big change of scenery, but not this. An “open circle” sounded like going to the psychiatrist with your colleagues. Even though they explained the concept it still stayed abstract

First open circle at Jos

It was D-day: I could not hold my nerves any longer. Maybe the fear of the unknown? It felt like my first day at school. I am an analyst: making plans and managing the content is in my genes. It was meeting o’clock. I went in the room, smiled because of the nerves. Because what else can I do? We sat around the table and were asked to write some positive and negative, work or non-work related, feelings or experiences on a post-it. One by one we would tell what we wrote and why. Nothing was mandatory and there were no expectations. Honestly? I was used to number not feelings, planning not improve. I eventually let go of all the fear. And went with the flow.

Learning process

It was very interesting to see what everybody had to say. We talked about projects that went bad and others that went really good. We talked about having a dog at the office and some talked about their week with the children. It felt like a safe space. I knew that everyone would take care of my emotions and experiences. My fear of being judged, my fear of expressing my feelings openly without holding back just vanished. I opened myself up by being honest to everyone but more importantly honest to myself. I for example talked about how Jos immediately made me feel comfortable. How I appreciated I could work from home when it suited me or that I could bring my dog at work.

Eventually the open circle helped me let go, see things from a different perspective and not to focus on details. By sharing my experiences in a safe and respectful way. To be able to move forward as a group and more importantly to learn from past mistakes. How by sharing our experiences and emotions we grow stronger as a team. Next open circle, bring it on!


"Sometimes not planning ahead is the best planning you can do!”