Making the time to celebrate company success isn’t always easy, and being in lockdown has meant many companies are forgetting to recognise our business and individual achievements. On the one-year anniversary of the UK lockdown, Rein4ce’s Culture and Communications Champion, Caitlin Jennings, reflects on how our team has been celebrating its achievements over the past year, lifting everyone’s spirits.
Back when we could meet up in real life and socialise together, our team often celebrated success on the spur of the moment with a cheerful lunch in the City of London or a bottle of champagne – or two.
In Britain, the end of lockdown looks to be in sight if cases continue to fall and the UK vaccine continues to roll out, but during this past year we’ve had to figure out how to recognise our own and each other’s achievements during the new reality of virtual working.
A fun company
At Rein4ce, we’ve always prided ourselves on being a very hard working but also a fun company. As we were stuck at home and staring at each other through our laptop screens, to be honest, some of the fizz went out of our days and work.
We decided that instead of giving into the workaday blues – a new, unwanted feeling at Rein4ce – we would appoint a Culture and Communications Champion to give us all a much-needed lift. And that’s me.
Celebrating success – a tricky business
Even before lockdown, as a small business we’d always struggled to celebrate success. As soon as we gained a new client, we’d immediately move on to how we were going to service them effectively, and to looking for the next business to add to our portfolio. Like many businesses, that champagne popping moment often passed us by.
But lockdown made us stop and think: shouldn’t we be taking a moment to celebrate? We started to think how to do that in a virtual working environment.
Treats and more treats
Although we were in different parts of the country, we organised a series of events we could enjoy together: takeaway nights, beer, wine and gin tastings, a cocktail-making class, and a cooking demonstration.
But the resounding favourite was a special night to toast our success in winning a really big client. Our CEO Mairi Mallon ordered a gourmet restaurant dinner to be delivered to our homes. We kept in touch through Skype while we assembled and cooked a delicious three-course meal with the star dish Chateaubriand for two and a bottle of good claret.
That evening, we got dressed up, chatted over an aperitif, and cooked and ate together. It was a great way to celebrate – and remember – how our business is going from strength to strength even in these difficult times.
Treats and more treats
But it’s not all champagne and posh takeaways: the little things we do week in week out to keep us fresh and rested are just as important.
One morning a week we work out together with a personal trainer to raise our energy levels. In our weekly culture and comms meeting we tell each other about our successes – or acknowledge another person’s success – and every week a different member of staff is allowed to take a half day off to help their mental health.
Our morale boosters have been such a success that we plan to continue with them after lockdown restrictions have been lifted (whenever that will be).
We’ve learned it’s important to show how much we value each other – and that we all deserve a pat on the back.