Every non-essential company is trying to figure out how to best work from home during this new normal. While we’re all experiencing the strains, facing challenges, and trying our best to adjust accordingly, it turns out it’s not all bad. From virtual happy hours and book clubs to spirit weeks, check out how companies around Boston are keeping its employees engaged during this era of working remotely.
At V2 Communications, we’ve created a “Kitchen Chats” channel on Microsoft Teams where we can talk about everything from Tiger King to sharing cute photos of our work from home buddies, aka our cats and dogs! We’ve also been running virtual game nights and have gotten a start on choosing a new read for our book club.
Erin Cooper, V2 Communications
Last week we held an agency-wide virtual Spirit Week complete with college day, favorite color day, mismatch day, crazy hair day and hat day! All of our meetings have transitioned over to Zoom, so it was a fun way to jazz them up. And as you can see, everyone got really into it!
Caitlin Snider, Hollywood Agency
At JGPR we are making great use of Google Hangouts for work discussions and a text message group for non-work issues – checking up on each other, telling jokes, sharing ridiculous news stories and MEMES, etc. Basically, just giving each other as much social interaction as possible. It’s hard because we’re in our natural element as a crisis-heavy firm, but we also used to going out together for martinis and dinners after or amidst big projects to de-stress. I’ll be looking for something special to do with my team once this is over–up to and including taking them to Disney World. The key for us is remembering that we’re in it together and that this too shall pass.
John Guilfoil, JGPR
We’re doing weekly virtual trivia events. Each week, we have one host to share questions on a special Slack channel and everyone else is split into two teams. Those teams join on video to be able to discuss, debate and decide on answers. When it comes time for answers, we all join one video conference line to go through answers and declare victory. People will hang and chat in the video for a while after. Beverage of your choosing is always encouraged.
Amanda Fountain, March Communications
We are hosting two events per week on Zoom and they range from group exercise with our resident bootcamp, Barre and yoga instructors to all agency trivia and cheers. We have been encouraging over our Slack channels for everyone to take breaks/walks and post pictures of their mini adventures. Engagement has been high and we’ve learned so much more about one another’s lives outside of work as the two worlds blend.
Cheryl Gale, March Communications
Matter is doing a myriad of things to keep morale high and engage employees while working remotely – both from an office by office perspective as well as agency-wide. In our Boston office, we’ve been holding weekly lunchtime discussions on top trends like “Love is Blind” and “Tiger King,” a weekly “Chopped” inspired challenge, as well as weekly Friday happy hours. Across the agency, we’ve been holding weekly trivia, workout classes, and even sharing photos on our interoffice HR platform of our workspaces and pets!
Sofia Giovannello, Matter Communications
At KoMarketing, proactive communication is the key to how we’re making sure team members are engaged and feel as comfortable as possible shifting to the remote work environment. In addition to weekly company-wide status meetings, program leads and directors consistently and proactively reach out to their teams to discuss campaigns, weekly assignments, and broader professional and personal situations. The success of our team members overall well-being is just as critical as our client commitments throughout this challenging time.
Derek Edmond, KoMarketing
As Arianna Huffington said at a recent virtual conference, “We need a new playbook to manage work at this time.” We may not have a new playbook, but we’ve implemented some new initiatives – and I suspect there will be more. Just a few of them include: Wellness breaks. 90 minutes. Every day. Exercise, relax, connect with the family – and recharge. Virtual Happy hour. Every Thursday. Drinks, updates, shout-outs. Just as if we were at Bar Bappe. Kids entertainment. A mid-day session to keep the young ones occupied, so you can catch a breath or get some work done. Daily check-ins. Human connection is needed now more than ever.
At Tier One Partners, we’re hosting daily Zoom calls with our staff to check in on everyone’s welfare and get a sense of everyone’s day, discuss client opportunities and challenges, etc. It’s great to see everyone’s faces! We’re also scheduling bi-weekly culture activities via Zoom, such as an agency-wide limerick contest around St. Patrick’s Day, a baby picture contest, virtual happy hours and more.
Kathy Wilson, Tier One Partners