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I Didn't Sign Up for This

This blog was written by Danielle Koestler, Credly's Customer Success Manager.

“I didn’t sign up for this” is the most authentic statement being spoken all over the world from those who are finding themselves at home instead of at the office due to Covid-19 restrictions. I’ve spoken those words myself, many times, because I was also torn away from an office that I very much enjoyed going to, but I’m also having to deal with life as we know it during this pandemic. 

I know that I’m not alone in working from home. In fact, over 50% of Credly’s employees work from a home office (including the large majority of the Customer Success team). I just happen to be a part of the small group of employees who typically went into the office, something that I really enjoy doing for a number of reasons. I signed up for “the office life,” including the commute, having to dress in something other than sweatpants, and interacting with people face-to-face on a daily basis. 

As I’ve settled into the fact that I could be working from home for the foreseeable future, I’ve made it my mission to acknowledge things that I am grateful for during this time. On the top of that list is a team and the effort we all have put into making remote working not only manageable, but exceptional. 

I know that not everyone can work on a team where each individual is their own special unicorn, but frankly, I do. I’m incredibly grateful for that and acknowledge it’s rarity. Not only are the people I work with amazing, but we have created the best remote support system out there. Here are the tools we’ve used to create a work environment and culture that we’re all proud to be a part of. 

  1. Stay connected. Slack is the glue that holds our remote team together. If you don’t have an internal chat tool at this time, now’s the time to consider one. If your organization already has a tool like this but only half-heartedly uses it, step up your chat game. Chat tools like Slack, Google Hangouts, and more, are not only extremely beneficial for collaboration, but they also help build relationships. On a daily basis, my team and I are sharing our evening plans, stories about their kids, and funny things that may have happened to us that day. Even if you're not a “small-talk” kind of person, having that avenue for conversation will prove to put a smile on your face each day. It also reinforces that even though we may physically be alone, we’re all still connected. 
  2. Schedule time each week to have a non-work related conversation. What? But this is work...we talk about work during meetings, right? Nope, I’m asking you to drop the work chat and just talk about your life, your plans, and your funny stories. Each Friday, my team and I meet for a 30-minute virtual coffee happy hour. We sometimes come with a fun theme planned, other times we just talk about life. Opening the door to learn more about someone other than how their client call went that day brings us closer together and helps fill that gap of not physically being in the office. 
  3. Be empathetic. We should all bring some level of empathy to work every day, but we need this now more than ever. Since you’re not around to have coffee chats in an office, it’s important to be intentional about connection. Did your coworker let you know she’s going to be five minutes late to a meeting because she’s helping her kids with their math homework? Extend her some grace. Are you feeling anxiety because you cannot meet with your friends after work each week like you used to? Insert empathy. Although we are all in different situations, we are really all in this together. 

If you’re interested in learning more about the Credly culture, or even joining the Credly team, head over to our careers page.