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July 28, 2021 • News

Talking teamwork and flexibility in the new workplace with Teamspirit

With many looking to downsize or completely do away with their office space, hybrid working is set to play a big role in a more virtual future workplace for creative agencies. One such agency blazing a trail for better flexibility and work-life balance is the award-winning financial services specialist, TeamspiritWe spoke to PR Director Emma Evans to talk about their 26th anniversary year and gather her insights on keeping up morale as we make the move towards hybrid working.

A shift towards hybrid working

As businesses over the world tried to shift their operations to a virtual environment almost entirely overnight, Teamspirit worked from a foundation of flexible working, allowing staff to pick up the necessary hardware they needed before the nation went into lockdown. Emma elaborates on a hybrid future workplace for the Teamspirit team:

“Before the pandemic, we were already flexible in our approach to working. What the pandemic has taught us, along with everybody else, is the need for more flexibility and, actually, a move towards true hybrid working, rather than just flexible working. So that’s something that we’ve introduced across the board.

We’re an integrated agency, so we all work together, and coming together to bounce ideas off each other has always been an important part of both our culture and our work. Looking at this, and asking every member of the team how they wanted to work in the future, was the foundation for our future policy. What we’ve decided going forward is that it will be a truly hybrid way of working, where we’ll ask each of our employees to work in the office at least two days a week.”

Tackling the challenges of teamwork in the new working world

At a time when no one was able to meet face-to-face, and creative teams had to find a way to thrive in a digital working landscape, Teamspirit looked after their own, making sure they kept loneliness at bay and continued to connect as a team despite the physical limitations as part of a disparate workforce.

“The most important thing beyond hardware and tech support is contact.”

“To ensure people felt they had a dialogue or a forum in place to speak to each other, we set up informal coffee mornings, which were useful for those who lived by themselves or felt they didn’t have as much contact or time to talk.

We also kept our Friday night drinks on Zoom, and every month or so, we would send a little home package delivery to all our employees. That ranged from snack attack packages to M&S biscuits. We made sure that people had little deliveries just to let them know we were thinking of them.”

An opportunity to make positive change

As a part of the VCCP Business group and Chime Communications group, the Teamspirit office has relocated to Victoria, allowing better proximity to their partners along with a better environment for the hybrid model of working they will now adopt.   

“When it comes to our return to the office now, we’ll be driven by the individual. We’re very lucky we have a committed, hardworking team who have all come together and supported each other as much as they can.”

“This office space that we have now is more conducive to that hybrid way of working. We’ve had about six or seven new joiners who onboarded during the pandemic, so I think, for everyone, being able to come into a new setting, that’s not just new for them but is new for everybody, is a chance to do things differently. Our new space has more break out areas, more meeting rooms set up for hybrid meetings, and more hot desks for those that need to be in for part of a day or are in meetings.”

“Moving forward, our plans now will be largely individual-led. For some, that may be about waiting until they’ve had their vaccines before they come into the office, which we fully support. We are actively encouraging those that are coming into the office for some of the time to choose their commuting hours at a time that suits them.”

“We’ve also introduced a meeting free hour every day, so every day we’d block out people’s diaries to try and encourage as many of our teams to get some screen-free time, to go out, to get some exercise, to really try and promote their health and wellbeing.”

Changing the face of finance for the better

Adopting the ethos of transforming the world of financial services for the better, Teamspirit launched a pro bono initiative to support businesses in the financial sector, the For The Better Awards. As a way of giving something back, Teamspirit partnered up with the Finance Innovation Lab to conduct the awards and offer their services for free to support innovators, charities or associations in the financial services sector.

“It’s about us, as a business, trying to give something back and use our skills to help other businesses who in their own way are on their own mission to transform the world of financial services.”

“Whether that’s providing access to more financial advice, or in this instance, better, more accessible forms of credit, lending, and savings products.

So we launched the competition and asked businesses to come and submit entries and information on what they would like us to help them with, whether it’s a digital or social media platform or enhancing their brand platform, and then we pick a winning entry.

What’s really great then is that we’ve asked everybody around the agency who would like to be involved. For a lot of us, that’s really something that attracts you to an agency like Teamspirit in the first place. It’s a chance to do something that is meaningful, something where you can see yourself making a difference.