“A harmonious, collective aspiration can change the course of circumstances.”from writings by The Mother
As many of us adapt to our new work-from-home situations and what everyone is calling the “new normal,” I’ve been feeling compelled to connect with the creative community to learn how others are surviving and thriving during this time. This past Friday, I attended our local, virtual Creative Mornings. This monthly gathering is a favorite of mine, as I always walk away with new insight to share with my coworkers and to apply to my work and home life.
This week, one of the speakers shared the above quote. “A harmonious, collective aspiration can change the course of circumstances.” She described how our thoughts generate words and our words generate action. This struck a chord with me. It is so important to think outside of the box right now and be nimble as a company. But it’s also important to reflect on what I’m learning right now and how I can apply those lessons to future situations.
I asked the Darby Comm team to join me in a writing exercise, reflecting on what we are grateful for during this pandemic and what we are learning. I used a prompt borrowed from the March 27 STORY Pep Talk: Because of this pandemic, I…
Here’s what we’ve learned just in the past three weeks. If you feel inspired, please share – we’d love to hear what you’re learning, too.
Angie (VP of Darby Comm)
Angie: Because of this pandemic, I have learned that when times are hard you find that people pull together to support one another.
Since the s*%t hit the fan a couple of weeks ago, I’ve seen business owners come together and develop partnerships to support our healthcare community. I’ve also seen other companies be creative enough to pivot from their standard mode of operation and learn how to maximize other channels to keep their employees working and their business thriving during this time. At Darby, I’ve seen our team be proactive and supportive for our clients, helping them communicate clearly with their customers on current status of operations, shipping and more. What I’ll take with me from this time, is that staying positive, communicating and supporting my local community is important when living in uncertain times. Personally, I have to admit that I’ve enjoyed having more time with my daughter and taking a break from the busyness of our regular schedules for more self-care, which we’re in dire need of right now.
Hannah: Because of this pandemic, I am learning to stay present with my work by putting relationships first.
During a crisis like this, each client’s situation can change hour to hour. Suddenly a brand will experience a huge spike or dip in demand. Or our clients might need to figure out how to quickly and tactfully communicate that they have a product that can actually help with the crisis. Or they might need to ride out multiple waves of change, navigating ‘stay home’ orders, new HR legislation, and alternate sources of funding.
These changes can bring a rollercoaster of ups and downs for our clients. I am learning that I don’t need to ride the rollercoaster with clients – this doesn’t actually help them. Expressing empathy is important, but it has its limits when it comes to responding effectively. I think the best thing we can do for our clients is stay present and aware of the changes they are experiencing so that we can help them craft responses that are wise, professional, proactive, and timely.
Darby Comm has always prioritized relationships with clients above all else, but this crisis is really bringing it into focus for me. Viewing my to-do list through a relational perspective really helps me get clarity: “How can our team be a good partner to this client during this time?”
This has implications for home life, too – we are going to be experiencing waves of changes over the next several months. If we hold on to our values rather than particular outcomes, we will be able to come together in our communities to help each other, from our homes to our business communities and hopefully the whole country.
Cory: Because of this pandemic, I’ve learned the importance of an open window.
In a time where we remain emotionally and physically isolated, an open window goes a long way. We’re all in this together, wading through the barrage of alarming statistics, the new norm of staying home, and the uncertainty surrounding what’s to come. And through these strange few weeks, observations out my open window have taught me a few things:
- There’s an art to a well-timed wave and a friendly smile.
- Nothing says “Hang in there” like a friendly smile and a neighborly wave with just the right amount of side to side movement. Let the wave say it all.
- A leaf blower and a longboard might be what I need right now.
- When an 8-year-old rocketed past my window on a longboard propelled by a leaf blower…I knew everything was going to be okay. Yes, things are scary and uncertain, but I’m strapping on my helmet, crankin’ up the leaf blower, and staying positive.
- Sunshine and rain still got it!
- A tried and true combination, it’s nice to know these crowd favorites collaborate to give us some sweet blooms for epic open-window wafts.
Suzanne: Because of this pandemic, I have learned that we are all much stronger than we thought, both as individuals, businesses, and communities.
We’ve all had to dig way deeper to adjust to what can seem like an impossible situation – and yet, we power through. I’ve seen so much positivity in the world in the past few weeks, so many inspiring stories, and so many people and businesses just trying to HELP. In a way, I hope things don’t go back to the way they were before this started and we can cling to this sense of global community in new ways moving forward.
I think what I’ll remember most about this time is the challenges and joys of being quarantined with two very young children, who have helped me find new ways to look outside of myself and past my own anxiety to bring them normalcy, and even some fun, during a very scary period.
Check back with us next week when we share more lessons we’ve learned from this global crisis.