We are all doing our level best to retain an element of normality in our daily lives at present. As a PR agency, it has been paramount to work together as a cohesive unit but outside of our typical office setting. We are fortunate to be naturally agile in how we work, but that’s not to say this situation isn’t without its challenges. To paraphrase a line from Star Trek: it’s work, but not as we know it.
Liberty PR Senior Account Manager Sam Smith working in his home office accompanied by his dog, Bear
Everything within our typical working day has changed in some way but none more so than the morning commute. We have eradicated the uncertainty of whether we’ll arrive at the office in good time, with many of us now only facing a staircase and a short walk to reach our desks for the day, but we have, temporarily at least, lost the opportunity we once had to spend our journey considering the day ahead.
One aspect of our typical working day which has remained the same, albeit virtually, is the morning team catch-up. Now more than ever, it’s vital to maintain a strong channel of communication between all our team members, and with the support of Microsoft Teams we’ve been able achieve this with relative ease.
The morning briefings provide us with the opportunity to discuss any breaking news that may change our thinking in how we approach a given subject, which in the current climate is something we’re facing on a regular basis. We can also liaise with each other on how we’re planning to structure our day and collaborate on any new ideas we’ve thought of since we last spoke.
With Teams, we’ve been afforded the opportunity to keep a continued line of communication open between ourselves via instant messaging, which isn’t dissimilar to our typical office set-up where we can bounce ideas back and forth to one another, but we can also host video calls if we feel a face-to-face conversation is necessary for a particular topic of conversation.
The use of platforms such as Teams and Zoom has also proven extremely beneficial when liaising with our clients. Fortunately, technology has ensured that even in these extraordinary times, we have had the chance to host video calls with clients to better understand their needs, respond to updates and put forward our recommendations.
Another challenge we have had to adapt to is working smartly and efficiently as a team with so many active files and documents circulating amongst us all. This is something we were prepared for as we functioned in this way while working in an office environment, but it has become imperative to use the briefing forms we have devised for various tasks and to share the current version of documents using our remote server.
Then, to bring the event full circle, we come to the end of the working day and the evening commute, or lack of. For most of us now, that consists of the few steps between our living rooms and kitchens or perhaps our gardens on a nice day. Either way, it’s important to have that distinction between the home office work set-up we’ve created and the more traditional use for our homes as, well, homes.