Lockdown Chronicles by Anchal Arora, Twitter Clients Solutions Manager, Httpool India
Let’s rewind to December 2019. Here I was in the midst of getting married and embarking on a new journey, excited about a month-long honeymoon holiday and setting up my new house, unaware of what was brewing in a place called Wuhan that was soon to grip the entire world.
Fast forward to March of 2020, 9 days before the iconic ‘Janta Curfew’, our HR instructed us to do a week-long work from home. I was relieved at that point and thought this was going to be short-lived. Little did I know that a week would turn into months, and now it’s been more than a year since I last visited my office.
It’s safe to say no one saw this coming. It hit everyone as hard as it could.
At first, just the idea of being confined to our homes with a limited supply of things for a month sounded like the most challenging situation to be in. Our work required us to conduct in-person meetings being client partners/managers to agencies & brands. Initially, a lot of questions flooded my mind. Would I be able to deal with this? If so, how?
For the first few weeks, my colleagues and I worked round the clock, assisting all partners in all ways possible, be it paperwork, campaign setups, or reporting. As April began, we knew we needed to adapt and make this situation work in our favour. The management and the team both realized that setting processes in place would be the key to accomplish this purpose. What followed were daily update calls, shared tracking sheets, and frequent team calls. Httpool as a company was extremely sensitive and forthcoming at this trying time. We were given the freedom to adapt at our own pace to this new situation, and there was constant support from the management in achieving that. We were encouraged to have a work-life balance and were given time offs to revitalize & rejuvenate. Most importantly, the company ensured everyone felt secure about their jobs; this made us confident and determined to leave no stone unturned in overcoming any challenges thrown at us.
Multi-tasking took on a new meaning; most of us found ourselves with a phone in one hand talking to teammates and a spatula or broom in the other doing household chores!
By the end of April, everything began to fall into place. Processes were being followed diligently, and business started to pour in. We began to work like a well-oiled machine. This focus and determination finally paid off and we reaped the fruits of our labor, clocking the highest revenue in 5 years!
While 2020 is labeled as a year full of trials and tribulations, for me, it was a year full of introspection on a lot of levels. This year has taught me life lessons like the value of relationships, the importance of having family around, and the value of money.
2020 for me was a year of necessary discomforts to grow personally and professionally. As a community, some of our characteristics came to the forefront in many ways, like Trust; Companies having faith in their employees to be committed to their work, and teams ensuring nothing falls through the cracks. Passion for your work, not letting anything come in its way, and re-igniting personal passions like music, working out, and baking. Everyone was out there becoming a Masterchef, and how! The spirit of #OneTeam; Filling in for each other while working a system with no gears grinding. This lockdown served as a valuable lesson in the importance of team building and working as a single unit.
Self-dependence AKA Aatmanirbhar; managing work and home chores without relying on external help. I can finally now cook so much more than just eggs and Maggi! I believe these experiences have rounded us into better beings that are focused on the things that matter and the people we love.
So after this rollercoaster year, we saw many predictions and reports stating how 2021will see the repercussions of 2020, but I believe otherwise. We are 3 months into this year, and it’s safe to say things are moving back to the new normal. There seems to be much receptiveness to ideas from agencies and brands alike. We do not hear the infamous “Oh! Our budgets have been slashed due to COVID”. The marketing communications have gone back to being product-focused, and not COVID-related. During Independence and International Women’s Day, we were excited to see our inboxes flooded with campaigns. We believe this to be an indicator of a great year ahead, professionally and personally.
I believe a year full of opportunities lies ahead of us. Only this time, we have a few new accessories; the sanitizer and the mask!
Authored Article by Anchal Arora, Twitter Clients Solutions Manager, Httpool India.