Today’s blog is a little different than our typical Theme Thursday but then again, today isn’t a typical Thursday. As we enter our 17th day working from home, we are quickly realizing this seemingly temporary adjustment is becoming our new reality – at least for now. As an architecture firm, interaction, connectivity, and communication are cornerstones of our business, both internally and with our clients. Because of the COVID-19 crisis, those in-person experiences with homeowners and design team members are now handled virtually. Becoming adaptive participants in this changing business landscape has been essential, and has uncovered some surprising insights that we would like to share with you.
Work-from-home mandates have forced businesses to consider ways to effectively leverage technology to work and communicate from home. As an agile firm, we have adapted and embraced technology that allows us to collaborate with all the key members of our design projects. Our in-person interactions, previously deemed crucial to our workday, have been replaced by video-conferencing and screen sharing sessions (GoTo Meeting is an office favorite). These video conference interactions, once misperceived as impersonal, have proven to be highly engaging and productive work sessions. Collectively, we are inspired by how much is accomplished with our clients after signing off.
As an office, we start each workday with a virtual team meeting. This allows us to discuss workflow, share drawings, and provide real-time project updates. To our surprise and delight, this daily virtual touchpoint has served to fine-tune our information exchange and enhance the clarity of our internal communication. While the work environment has changed, there is a silver lining: our team has adopted a new and reimagined model of (remote) collaboration.
The COVID-19 outbreak is considered the most striking disruption to office and work culture in our lifetime. It has caused us to think and behave differently within our work routines, and business as usual is anything but. However, thanks to today’s superb technology, we can maintain our daily communication in a way that still feels human for our clients and our team. Seeing each other virtually—including body language and facial expressions— rather than relying solely on phone calls and emails, helps us better present our ideas and feel genuinely connected.
We appreciate and embrace the opportunity to use today’s technology as a vital job resource until the time when we can work face-to-face once again. Until then, we remain fully committed to providing the communication and service our clients have come to expect. We hope you found this information valuable as we navigate our new reality and we wish you health and peace during this challenging time.