Finding ways to stay connected while working from home

photo of MAKERS employee and a cat
Emily working at home with her feline "co-worker."

At this point, none of us are strangers to working from home. Over the last four months, remote work has shifted from a nice benefit and occasional occurrence to an obligation. It’s hard to believe that MAKERS employees have been working remotely since the first week of March! Although I can’t deny that having no commute is nice, the culture is my favorite part of working at MAKERS. The hardest transition was the shift from talking to my co-workers every weekday to only having my cat around to chat with (and I’ll be honest, he’s not a very good listener).

Others must feel the same way about our office, because it didn’t take long for MAKERS employees to find ways to stay connected with each other.

photo of three women talking
From left to right: Rachel, Gretchen and Linda gather in the kitchen to celebrate Gretchen’s wedding, pre-COVID.

Beer Fridays

Gathering in the kitchen and catching up over snacks and drinks is one of the ways MAKERS employees stay connected. Often, this is accompanied with some fun trivia, with topics requested by staff. We do this once a week on Friday afternoons – “Beer Friday,” as it’s known in our office. This decades-old tradition wasn’t going to be stopped by remote work!

Although nothing beats coming together in person, MAKERS has kept the social fun going with snacks and drinks over video chat. It’s especially great when kids or pets make an unexpected appearance. We’ve even been able to play an occasional video game together, thanks to the Jackbox Party Pack.

Photo of three people in an office
From left to right: Stefani, John and Sean enjoy a Beer Friday gathering in 2007.

Pet features

With my cat as my main company these days, it seems like my pet has become more like a co-worker than a companion (even if he mostly just sleeps). Since being at home every day presents plenty of opportunities to snap cute pictures of our furry friends, we’ve been sending out weekly emails featuring our new “co-workers.”

I’ve loved learning more about the pets everyone lives with, especially when you can put a name to the adorable faces that pop up on video chat.

photo of a fish
Brent’s 23-year-old clown loach, appropriately named “The Loach.”

Although it hasn’t been unchallenging to be apart from people for so long, I’m glad that MAKERS has made it easier to self-quarantine and socially distance responsibly to keep my friends, family, co-workers and community safe. I’m looking forward to the special Beer Friday I’m sure we’ll have when we all return to the office!

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