1 year with FuckUp Nights Zaragoza

Time flies and it is already one year that FuckUp Nights Zaragoza exists. I won’t forget when I was starting this project in Zaragoza, a lot of people were saying, this is not going work in Zaragoza, people have different perception about failure… It is like tabu… but then I said, I don’t care. I like fighting for something that I believe in, even no one believes in, which is the most important.

I still remember when I got an email from Yannick (coordinator of FUN international) saying that I could start, by giving me few guidelines how it should work and then everything was on my shoulders. So I checked how other cities were working and I have started reflecting what I needed.

As I had some experience from previous projects, so I have decided that we were going need some more people as I couldn’t do everything by myself. Then I looked in my past and I remembered some friend of mine who worked with me at AIESEC in Zaragoza, who was really happy to join the initiative. The most important thing is having local people who know the city. We had someone who helped us a lot finding sponsors, speakers and places where to host our events.
At the beginning we had no funds, so we had to invest our own money, but after all year we recovered all losses, finishing the year with slight profit.

I will never forget this “logo”, which I made with my father, in order to save some money. Now I am an expert at making them, so if you need some help, just let me know!

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After few months working on the project, we had our first event. We end up with over 7o people attending the event and we got published at different newspapers, thanks to our team member who knew the press in the city.

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After our first event, everything looked much easier, we saw the impact and people congratulated us for our efforts, idea and everyone saw big future for FuckUp Nights Zaragoza. We ended up 8 people working on it as volunteers, in order to make this positive impact in the city that I was looking for from the beginning. We had some difficult moments during the year with volunteers, which were related with motivation. Sometimes you need to think about all the team and if someone is not dedicating enough time, that can affect everyone, so you need to find someone else more motivated or with more free time.

In general, it is amazing to see how powerful is the idea of FuckUp Nights, how the culture that I saw in Sweden, having afterwork and learning at the same time, was established in Zaragoza.
It is funny to remember, but before starting this project I was talking with my ex teacher and I was complaining that I miss this networking way that we had in Stockholm and she said, why don’t you start it yourself? So we did it!

Talking about the recruiting, my recommendations would be for any job: identify clearly if people really like what they will do at the project as a team members. All of our members were working at the same time at their own jobs, but they were looking for something else to get involved. The most important is that they were working on something that they really liked it, within the role that they identified by themselves.

Some of them said that it was not work, it was a pleasure. Recruiting it MUST be done with clear job description and responsibilities.

After one year, it is time to go to another place, I need to move to another city but I am happy to see that my team is willing continue with this project even without me. It is nice feeling, coming to a city bringing the idea and letting it go with someone else. It is a bit sad, but also you feel proud about it because the impact will continue even without you.

Here is a picture of my team, which was like my family during the year. I had so many nights without sleeping, worried that things won’t go forwards, but after few events, I totally could trust my team and things were going forwards smoothly.

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Anyways, life is continuing, new projects will come and I know that my team will do their best with the project. The last thing, this was possible only because my team, without them, I am no one.

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About Tautvydas Zabulionis

I am what I do
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