Coming back to work after the Christmas break with increased lockdown restrictions was never going to be easy and we knew we would have to make sure we took additional steps to keep in contact with our people.
- We added coffee, lunch and afternoon tea slots into the diary and asked people to turn up if they wanted to take a break and catch up with someone. Most of our employees have joined the company during lockdown and therefore have never met, so providing an opportunity to talk in smaller groups has helped them get to know each other better.
- We held an all team session at the end of January to share our objectives for 2021 and made use of the technology to split into teams of 4 or 5 with the intention of connecting people. This worked really well and allowed people to have conversations and interactions that may not have happened, even if we were in the office.
- We have held lunch and learn sessions on creativity and innovation, an ethos we are building the organisation on, and shared what our product development was so that everyone would understand it better. There are more scheduled to take place over the coming weeks.
- We have replaced our employee of the week with shoutouts where we ask anyone to shout out someone they believe deserves it that week. This has meant that more people talk at the weekly huddle and share more great work by the team. This has included those people who have lifted others spirits as well as those who have delivered exceptional pieces of work.
- We have introduced regular after work sessions including wind down drinks, our Big Fat Quiz with resident quizmaster Gilky and our first race night which raised funds for our charities of the year whilst having some fun.
- We launched Udemy at the start of February which has given every permanent employee access over 5000 courses covering both work related and non work related training.
- For the second time our normal weekly huddle included children who came along and shared their artwork with us as well as a few stories about their parents, it was a great start to the day and brought a lot of laughter to the meeting.
- We have supported all our parents with school children to manage home schooling and work.
We are listening to feedback on what is working and what is not working for people, and we will continue to evolve what we do. The restrictions are not going away anytime soon but that does not mean we will be any less connected to our people. “Although we are physically distanced our aim is to be socially close” Benny Corr, CIO