Dear future me,
I have never written a letter to myself (It’s a little bit strange), however I have quite a bit of time on my hands so I thought I should reflect and remind my future self of some important things I learnt whilst in iso 2.0 – thanks Melbourne.
It’s a crazy uncertain time at the moment and living through the age of Covid-19 is bloody terrifying but at the same time there is an overwhelming sense of togetherness. Our daily routine of everyday life has been thrown on its head and we have had to learn how to create a new everyday routine – which is not easy especially when you can only legally move 5km from your house!
So here goes, things below that I need to remind myself of once this is all over –
I am a people person:
I’ve always thought of myself as a people’s person as I love a chat (hence being in PR) but one of the things that I am missing terribly is having constant conversations with people. I miss my work fam and my work pod! Going for a morning coffee at our local La Manna and gossiping about our weekends or stressing about our deadlines brings me joy and makes me happy. Maybe it’s the fact that I can walk to the shop with only my wallet and phone and not have to worry about my two-year-old trying to pick and eat one-week old chewing gum from under the table. None the less I miss my colleagues and the conversations that we have in person, instead of over ZOOM or Teams.
In saying this over the last few months (5 months already – can you believe it?) it has been a pleasure to watch my team adapt over such trying times and highlight that no matter the circumstances they can work autonomously whilst maintaining a high standard for our clients. This is something that makes me proud as a manager as trust is so important in a team dynamic.
I’ve also been impressed with the quality of campaigns brands have achieved throughout the pandemic to support the public in continuing those connections with friends. Dan Murphy’s Trivia nights is one of those campaigns where you can share a beer or wine with your mates whilst competing in their online trivia night. Good on you Dan for pulling me out of an 8-hour STAN binge (If anyone has seen Normal People I’m sure you know what I’m talking about).
The Power of Learning:
Given all this spare time I have realised how important it is to keep my mind active, whether it be learning to bake or sharpening my Italian skills – staying busy and learning stimulates my mind and helps me maintain optimal mental health. Although please NEVER try baking a chocolate chip cookie again it won’t go down well.
AMPR has been really supportive of learning throughout Covid-19 and has really promoted the idea of brushing up on our communication/ public relations skills. This included anything from creative writing courses, strategic innovation and even how to present to win business over zoom (LOL!). As a team we are working through La Trobe’s Writing for Strategic Communication course which has enabled us to go back to basics to strengthen our writing skills and learn to think strategically in terms of writing for different clients and how to ensure we are consistently creating great content.
I love being busy:
How are you? So busy. Said EVERY SINGLE MILLENIAL!!!
I was talking to my boss via Zoom the other day and we both said how much we missed the adrenaline rush of being busy. Before Covid-19 kicked off AMPR was coming to the end of one of their biggest month’s on record. We had VAMFF, Grand Prix, Apollo World Tour and more, and we were bloody busy but regardless of how stressful a time like that can be, the vibe in the office was electric. We were all in it together (one family), supporting one another and working our butts off for that end result – a happy client! I look forward to that again so remember when you go home to your husband and bitch about how busy you are – remind yourself how you SECRETLY love it.
As a community we are all on this wild ride together and one thing I have noticed is how important community is. I was walking down the street the other day and I realised how many people said ‘good morning’ to me or simply smiled and nodded. I was a little taken aback as I’m used to people going about their daily life without even noticing others walk by, however right now I can feel the sense of community and the realisation that we are genuinely all in this together. SO be kind to your neighbours…. Always!
I also believe the ‘Be Kind’ slogan has been brought to life via brands throughout the pandemic. There is no mistaking that lots of companies have been hit hard recently, especially those within the hospitality industry. It has been interesting to watch them adapt their business model to stay alive throughout the last few months but one thing that makes me proud is seeing some companies (no matter the tough time they are going through) give to others. Attica created an initiative called The Soup Project where if a customer ordered a serve of the of Shewry’s new Thai chicken soup – shiitake and coconut broth with shredded free-range chicken and a crisp garlic and pepperberry topping – $5 of the $25 you pay will feed an international worker who wasn’t eligible for the government subsidy therefore struggling to put food on the table.
This is my last key learning for myself – please stay active. Yes Olivia, get your butt of the couch and go to spin!
Now that all fitness studios are closed I have realised how much I love to go and exercise and have that one hour to myself. It’s liberating. I have somewhat been maintaining my active lifestyle with the likes of 20 minute HIIT and Pilates sessions thanks to Studio PP, however having my son trying to jump on my stomach whilst attempting a pelvic curl can be challenging and frustrating.
So after 5 or so months in isolation (yes im just as shook as you that we are still in iso) I truly believe that this time has allowed me to reflect on myself as a human being and a manager of team and has taught me to be a better leader for my clients and my team. I think learning how to adapt to an environment, a new way of thinking and even a different personality is important in succeeding as a leader in today’s workforce.
You are resilient – Stay strong!