COVID-19, an invisible enemy with unthinkable repercussions. From the moment we heard about the spread of the virus in Belgium and the possibility of a complete lockdown, all co-workers were informed about the possible consequences of how our team would work together during the coming few weeks - which turned into months already. Endare was well prepared: a survival package with mainly chocolate (yes, very needed during times of crisis) and hand sanitizer were handed out before we had to make the full ‘teleswitch’. The whole functioning of Endare changed, but because we build digital solutions, most challenges were surprisingly easy to deal with digitally. And yes, virtual communication was and still is one of the main changes in our daily interactions but, seeing some colleagues wearing pajamas and slowly seeing people's hair getting as long as their wives', daughters' or sisters' hair was a real revelation.
New virus, new struggles
Telework, for some easy peasy but for others the brewery of a dozen new struggles.
Who knew cats could be this annoying? The begging for food even though they had their meal two minutes ago and the constant walking over your keyboard resulting in a sudden ''ggggggggghhhhhjjjj' in the middle of a written email or line of code are just 2 reasons to get a dog instead.
Luckily we don’t want to replace our kids by a dog, even though they are just that little too much from time to time. While schools were closed, the needed attention of some kids increased like never seen before. They ask you what you're up to every half an hour, and playing with their barbie dolls or star wars action figures has become commonplace. But the good thing is, kids learned the value of going to school, so they (hopefully) won’t be troublesome anymore if they have to get up early in the morning.
Next to these struggles, the main reason to miss our workplace is the impossibility of seeing our colleagues face to face or to joke around when eating lunch. As COVID-19 hasn’t left, the struggles remain. But with the more relaxed safety measures, our team is able to go to the office in two separate groups. In that way, we don’t have to miss the social environment that much.
A lockdown does have some advantages
Communicating with your co-workers on a daily basis is a must for good cooperation and teamwork. Next to the work-related calls and online meetings, weekly online gatherings to drink some beer and talk about life happen almost automatically. Our focus on the relation with co-workers and making sure everyone feels comfortable became even more clear during these particular times. We still open Cafe Endaro every Friday afternoon to start the weekend, work as one team, and virtually welcome new colleagues. All of this makes Endare even stronger as a team.
One thing we know for sure is that flexibility is key, especially now. The virus-related challenges showed we’re able to optimally deliver our services and provide our partners with an equally good experience during strange times. The software world gave us many opportunities in the past and will open many doors in the future, but the ability to remain working has been of significant value to all of us.
All great changes are preceded by chaos
Saving the best for last, we’ll end this writing with one great change within our communication channels. As Corona made us shuffle our agendas and meetings, an opportunity arose for the further, intensive development and implementation of our new website. This gorgeous and brand new website on which you’re reading this blog post can be considered as an early Corona baby. Different team members brainstormed about the look and feel, the content, and the additional feature: our blog. We could say that all great changes are preceded by chaos and that we’re excited about this one.
We’re looking forward to keep improving our website and our visitors' experience with it. New great changes are on their way!
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