Rebecca O'Neill, Effectiveness Director
Where to begin! This has been a real whirlwind of a year, and yet somehow its also been pretty dull and uneventful! A lot of that being down to our new lives as hermits, cooped up at home. But I have to say there are a lot of things I’ve loved about working from home:
- The new balance I’ve got with my family is amazing – I’d only recently returned from maternity leave when the office closed so, having just got used to the wild flurry of activity that comes with squeezing in a nursery run and a long commute, I’ve now spent almost an entire second year getting much more quality time than anticipated with my 2 year old daughter, Nova
- I’ve somehow managed to get closer to my colleagues with more regular catch ups to accommodate our newfound distance. It’s been a real pleasure to get to know my team better and connect more with everyone’s lives outside of work now the lines have been forced to blur so much
- We moved out to the suburbs in Chessington a couple of years ago, which we love (and yes, we do live near to the World of Adventure – and yes, we get free tickets), but the commute was quite long so ditching that for a while has been a blessing – and I have no idea how I’ll go back to it!
- Living so close to the countryside of Surrey I’ve been able to take some of the extra time we’ve all gained to do some exploring and turns out there are loads of beautiful walking routes and National Trust parks right on our doorstep that we had failed to notice prior to having this extended period at home
But, as we have all experienced to some extent, there have been some pain points to the whole thing:
- Some days I’ve got so stuck into work that I’ve literally forgotten to move around at all, let alone leave the house for some fresh air. Not the healthiest way to live!
- I love my husband dearly, but wouldn’t it be great if he occasionally wasn’t right next to me?
- After months of binging, I’ve officially completed Netflix. I quickly realised at the start of lockdown that I don’t have many hobbies so now I’ve started painting, and it turns out I’m rubbish at it.
So, it really has been a mixed bag, but the positives of my experience working from home this year definitely outweigh the negatives. And whilst I’m excited at the prospect of heading back to the office and seeing some actual real-life humans, I don’t see a 5-day office week in my (or most other people’s) future!