Christmas wishes from Sue Thomas, Director at Career Evolution

I don’t know about you, but I am certainly looking forward to a well-earned rest this Christmas, and I know I am not alone in being eager to leave 2020 behind.

However, even with the potential easing of some restrictions, this Christmas will be far from normal for many of us. Despite the constant reminders of the ongoing pandemic and things like self-isolation and ‘bubbles’ impacting on our ability to get together with friends and family, there have been plenty of bright spots, as well as inspirational stories of kindness and perseverance throughout this time.

Over the last nine months we have seen, heard and probably been involved with some of these. From people taking to their doorsteps and gardens to #ClapforCarers every Thursday evening throughout the first UK-wide lockdown, to 100 year-old Captain (now Sir) Tom’s incredible fund-raising, walking laps of his garden – and raising millions in the process – to support front-line workers. And of course, all the everyday acts of selflessness of people looking after each other, even from afar, has certainly made this year one to remember beyond its darkest times.

So, as I complete my last meetings of the year and tidy my desk ready to start afresh in 2021, I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year, and send you the sincerest wish that things will improve throughout 2021. I look forward to celebrating a return to a more stable way of life soon.

Seasons Greetings!

Looking back – what we’ve learnt in 2020

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We all know that this year has been unlike any other. It has been an incredibly tough year. All of us have faced different challenges with regards to providing for – and protecting – ourselves and our loved ones, whilst adapting to circumstances beyond our control.

However, if we can take anything positive from this year, it’s the things that we have learnt in terms of defining a better workplace for the future.

As 2020 thankfully draws to a close, here are some of my key take-aways from this year, which I would like to see continue into the new year and beyond:

We can work anywhere

For many of us, the traditional 9-5 office hours may be a thing of the past. With many companies forced to close their doors this year, workforces have had to adapt to working from home. From new tech and ergonomic workstations delivered to our door, to managing our home life around online meetings and deadlines, we have shown that we don’t have to be based in an office to get the job done. Only time will tell as to whether this ‘new normal’ will be a continuing code of practice for companies across the UK.

Adapting to new technologies

A year ago, some of us may have run a mile from having to take part in a video call or conference. Now, this is one of the easiest ways to create virtual face-to-face meetings and catch-ups. We’ve all had to get to grips with Zoom, Teams, or a hundred other software tools to stay connected with colleagues, customers and clients (as well as friends and family). With no end yet in sight to working from home for many of us, it’ll be fascinating to see what new forms of technology will be created and adapted to suit a largely home-based workforce.

The importance of valuing staff

With a greater emphasis on flexibility to accommodate a work life based at home, it’s never been more important to make staff feel valued. I have heard of, seen and experienced an increased level of kindness, tolerance and understanding between people, colleagues and their managers and CEOs. This is particularly true around accommodating people’s personal circumstances and family commitments during these uncertain and difficult times, and I hope that this always continues.

Whatever challenges the next year brings for us, if you or members of your team need assistance with tips on building resilience in the face of continued uncertainty and changing circumstances, get in touch to see how we can help.