Our Journey with Remote Work at Firstbird
On Monday March 16th, we started mandatory home office for our entire team. Compared to other companies, we felt fairly prepared. We have a culture of home office and frequently have 40-50% of our team working from home on any given day of the week. We are well set up in terms of communication channels, tech systems and working style – still, it has been an adjustment. We are sharing what we have learned from our first weeks of home office in hopes it might help you and your company adjust to our new “normal” in terms of our work life. You can catch up on what happened in the first week here.
Week 2: Adapting to the new challenges
By week two, like many companies, we faced the next set of challenges – mainly preparing our business for our new situation to be a marathon, not a sprint.
As a provider of recruiting services, our market has changed overnight. Large deals imploded days before signing, our inbound traffic collapsed to zero within a few days and many of our customers especially from the tourism sector took a massive hit. We had to adapt to this new reality. Fast!
While everyone was working hard to steer through the storm we saw that now the insecurity of our economical situation added to the anxiety and insecurity already present through the lock-down.
To counteract we doubled-down on our communication efforts. We implemented more social activities and increased our one-to-one support for team members. We launched additional new initiatives including weekly yoga classes, a team game afternoon and played ‘home-office’ bingo. We also asked our Branch Leads (Team leaders) to reach out to their team members individually. With this type of home office comes the added challenge of the erasure of work-life balance. It was important to take the time to check in with every employee to better understand the stress they were experiencing. Were they trying to manage childcare and work at the same time? Were they worried about an elderly relative? All stress and anxieties are enhanced and brought into work-life in a pandemic.
With this week we took another step to ensure the well-being of our employees. This was also an important focus for the following weeks for us. Next week, we will tell you how we continue to look after our employees and how we continue to pursue our company goals from home.