In this blog post, our Sales and Marketing Manager Harriet Boatwright talks through some effective methods for adapting to different ways of working.
There’s no question that the outbreak of COVID-19 has changed the landscape for the Conference and Events Industry. But whether events have been postponed, cancelled completely, or are taking place virtually, teams are working at full speed to meet their customers’ needs, and keep them fully updated.
In line with the Government’s lockdown measures, the majority of us within the events industry are now working from home, so I thought it might be useful to share a few tips.
Make your workspace work and plan your time
Like everyone else, I’ve read plenty of blogs on how to create an ‘effective workspace at home’. You know the type. They advocate ‘calm environments’ and ‘space free from distraction’. For me, and many other professionals working from home, there is more than just me to consider. With a partner and two children also working from home, we have needed to zone the house. We each have a room set up as an office or a classroom and our time is planned to the minute! With a timetable for the kids and a working list for the grown-ups, the day is managed pretty tightly. Keeping ourselves and the kids on a schedule really helps to set boundaries between work and home – and so far (four weeks in) it is working!
Communication is key
Working remotely can present some significant changes when it comes to communicating with your own team, and with customers too. But it’s crucial to keep those lines open, especially during such uncertainty. Now’s the time to get up to speed on the many ways digital technology can improve our communication flow. It might be using Zoom for effective meetings and team updates, revising or adapting your social strategy to reach new customers, or simply being more present on email and the phone. I may not be the most tech-savvy, but as a means of staying connected to the team, colleagues and customers, it is a no-brainer.
Ways of working
Working from home means having to flex and adapt current working processes to ensure they are fit for purpose in the current working climate. Establishing set ways of working for the whole team to adhere to couldn’t be more important. All team members require different resources at different times, meaning that flexibility is needed now more than ever. Yet it’s equally as important to ensure that we continue to work together. One way we’ve done this is by transitioning our previous spreadsheets to online trackers. This allows us easy access to our work-in-progress, whilst enabling everybody to update the doc. The whole team are on the same page, working together.
There’s an exclamation mark on this one for a reason. Many people will find themselves with a little extra time on their hands, with projects and events paused or cancelled. So seize the initiative! Tackle those long overdue admin tasks, even if they’re a bit dull. Tick off some to-do list items hanging around from way back in the mists of late 2019. Or brush up on existing skills – and learn a few new ones – with webinars. That way, we can hit the ground running when normality eventually resumes. The event industry, and supporters of the industry, have really shown their metal during these challenging times. There is also an abundance of free training and resources available to individuals who are looking to focus on some development in and amongst the day job.
Make the most of your mornings
One of the big benefits of working from home is the absence of a long commute at the mercy of Northern Rail! So I owe it to myself to replace that pain with a little joy. Or productivity, at least. Breakfast with my family fits the bill – much to the delight of my two children, and whilst the kids prepare for their morning PE with Joe Wicks, I get ready for the team briefing – all quite civilised really!
So whatever your lockdown life entails – whether you’re managing a busy household like I am, or find yourself going stir crazy with just your cat for company – we’re all in it together. Hopefully my tips can help you maintain a bit of normality (and sanity!) amidst COVID-19.
Stay safe and stay connected!