If you’ve met with me virtually over these last 4 – 5 months, you’ve noticed the rustic wood paneling and perhaps even heard the occasional goat bleating in the background. That’s because I spent my summer working out of the 2nd floor of a barn that - with some help from family - we converted into the new pandemic approved headquarters for Sonder.
As the cooler weather sets in and I move my summer office back inside, here are three lessons I’ll be taking with me:
1. Don’t let the “but that’s how it’s always been” mentality get in the way or hinder your growth. Embrace creativity and innovation and find a better solution.
When a few weeks of working from home became a few months and it became clear that this was going to be the new normal until end of the year or longer – I knew we needed a better “work from home” solution so that we could be as productive as possible. In an unused 2nd floor barn I saw the potential to create a comfortable office space to work.
While there were definitely some challenges (Like: just how do you get Wi-Fi to travel 200 yards from the house into the barn?) - putting together some bright minds (thanks to my dad & future-brother-in-law) and a bit of creativity we were able to find solutions and overcome those challenges.
If we as an industry are to stay relevant in the 21st century we must be willing to get creative, engage with other professionals on things that we are not expert in (hello marketing & building online engagement) and get to work. The pandemic is changing how many industries will operate both now and in the future – and for many financial professionals who have relied on in-person meetings networking events to grow their practices & stay engaged with clients –now more than ever – it’s time to re-imagine what’s possible and make some bold changes.
2. No mountain (or ladder) is too high to climb if you have the right tools!
Another challenge in creating a 2nd floor barn office was that the 2nd floor was only accessible by a wooden ladder:
Ready to climb up?
In my case, a pulley system helped hoist up my desk, printer and chairs up into the 2nd floor. A backpack became crucial for carrying my laptop & coffee thermos – leaving my hands free to climb up to work!
Likewise, I was - and still am - so grateful for the tools & expertise that Wealth
Continuum Group provided during this time. As early adopters of Zoom– we were well positioned as a firm to transition 100% virtual within a matter of days. Our Anywhere Advisor System – our step-by-step system for generating new leads online - proved worthy of its name. When connecting & engaging with new prospective clients was forced to move 100% virtual – we were ready.
3. The importance of having great office culture & awesome co-workers.
While I miss seeing the rest of the Wealth Continuum Group family in person – we’ve found creative ways to stay connected – including virtual yoga, a virtual cooking class series, and even a comedian night. I also had fun hanging out with my “new” co-workers: they don’t talk much – but were always happy to see me!
Me & mini horse, Echo
And the three goats: Charlie, Iola and Bean!