So, after the long months of endless Zoom, Google Meets and Teams calls we’re finally back working in the office – sort of! Since July we’ve resumed our office seats 3 or 4 days a week each, mixing up the kitchen table for a desk, with a proper chair! Looking back on lockdown, it’s amazing to think about how quickly everyone had to change the way they work overnight.
Having got back in the office, we wanted to share some of the things we learnt in lockdown.
Working from home works!
Whilst no amount of lockdown video calls could replace seeing each other face-to-face, there’s no doubt that those moments of shared experience, ideas and creativity all come when working together – whether two miles or two metres apart!
Working from home has been a success both for business and for work-life balance. Everyone has had to adapt, but we’ll certainly be keeping a flexible approach to this in the future! One thing that becomes harder away from the office is making sure everyone in the team is OK, so being in the office part of the time helps to make sure that everyone is happy, healthy and comfortable with their work.
Turn on the video
This sounds so simple, but we found that for good conference calls, keeping the camera switched on makes for a more productive and focused session. It doesn’t replace the non-verbal communication you get when you’re face-to-face, but it keeps everyone engaged in the call – and, if nothing else, forces you to get dressed – your top half at least! Having a designated meeting leader to keep it on track also helps.
Online work systems have been a lifesaver!
We moved our work management onto Basecamp a couple of years ago and set up cloud storage for files at the same time, so were already used to shared workspaces. Now we’re moving into Teams and collaborating much more effectively both internally and with our clients!
As the old saying goes, ‘in adversity comes opportunity’
Marketing and communications can sometimes be seen as an easy bit of fat to trim when a crisis comes calling and we’re certainly not alone in feeling the impact of this. However, the crisis also created opportunities to help our clients through new challenges, allowing Conker to showcase the breadth of our services.
Navigating external communications during the pandemic has not been plain sailing; old plans have had to be scrapped, new plans quickly created, approaches to marketing have had to change to target new audiences.
Digital activation has become more important with print and traditional media taking a hit. Responsive, responsible social media means more than it did before, often becoming the frontline in customer comms. Underpinning all this, cut-through, quality communications aimed at the right audiences continue to be the most important aspect of what we do.
Some businesses have been stretched, finding new levels that didn’t exist before taking current and new customers on the journey with them. We’ve been delighted to help all our clients, big and small, through the challenges, working as a partner where long-term success is the goal – not short-term gains.
We’re looking forward to the future with our clients as we all adapt to new ways of working – it’s incredible to see how some of them have adapted in the recent months. Broderick’s have launched touch-free machines that vend sanitiser and PPE. Creamline have been a lifeline for thousands of people across the North West, delivering locally produced food and dairy products. Another client has made staggering changes to produce their vital skin care products for the NHS.
Here’s to the new normal!