We wrapped up the week with a dose of optimism and ideas on how to find a balance. Joining us in the chat were three PR pros who are sitting in the middle (you know that space where you have to delegate down and up?) – Lauren Walbert (Sandy Hillman PR), Emily McDermott (Van Eperen), and Phill Yerby (Weber Shandwick).
Each offered a glimpse into their challenges and successes on finding that balance. Note: we don’t have a recording of this chat but below are some of the top tips offered.
Challenge: Not being in the office and connecting with your team on a daily basis.
Tip: *Be your #1 advocate! Put a hard stop to the day for some self-care.
- Hold weekly Zoom Happy Hours to chat about non-work issues.
- Hold regular team meetings to exchange ideas.
- Hold one-on-one meetings with staff (up and down) to discuss work/issues etc.
- Above all … be flexible!
Challenge: Experiencing more anxiety issues caused by increased noise, limited spacing, etc.
Tip: *Find a calming app to help deal with the stressors. Check out the Happiness Lab podcast series to help destress.
- Have open conversations with other people in the house.
- Share with your team how you are feeling, i.e., you’re exhausted over trying to balance and deal with stress – BE HONEST, BE VALUABLE
- Put your computer and work stuff away at the end of the day.
- Cut out too much news and transition to more helpful podcast vs news
Challenge: Trying to get work down vs. giving family attention (including being teacher to your children) when needed.
Tip: *Know that you can only take in so much info a day so limit your intake to avoid overwhelming yourself.
- Establish your own space.
- Get into a routine by setting limits on your time.
- Take breaks during the day
Challenge: Feeling energized especially if you’re losing or pausing clients.
- Find something meaningful to do, such as starting a new hobby or volunteering for a local cause.
- Get out as much as possible.
- Interact with others (at a safe distance of course!).
- Support local businesses as much as possible.
Challenge: Taking vacation or days off when this is a demanding time for communicators
Tip: Find time to turn it off! Do have to have selfcare; talk to other people … take a break!
- Ask for a mental health day
- Shut down with out of office
- Driveway drive-bys
- Avoid workspace as much as possible
- Take advantage of Employee Assistance Programs if your employee provides
- If you’re self-employed, take vacation with no check-ins.
Look for the positive – create your own environment (i.e., put on your own music). Get into your own space!
So what’s to like about this new work environment? How about the flexibility?
- Flexible work hours (but stay consistent!)
- More time to exercise, i.e., online exercise classes
- Savings on gas, childcare, etc.
- Less chitchat while trying to get out of work so workday ends when it ends.
The question in the end is How will this time change the way we work?
Have tips you’d like to share? Send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Missed the last few weekly chats? Here you go …