After the holiday season, people generally organize and put everything away. You may notice that as soon as Boxing Day ads finish on TV, they are replaced with ads for weight loss, house cleaning and organization. People are putting away their new gifts, throwing away things that are taking up too much space, and getting ready for a new year.
We are too. Except we’re emptying the entire office, not just the storage cupboards. Our office is moving to 4828 53rd Street, not too far away, and we’ll be up and running in the new location just after Family Day.
It’s been an interesting time sorting through boxes that haven’t seen the light of day for five years or more and what’s even more interesting is how the things we held onto have little relevance in a 2021 office setting. Over the years, copies of old brochures, posters, marketing items like United Way paper clip holders managed to make their way into boxes, carefully itemized with a label, or shoved in a box with a Sharpie scrawl on the side to suggest what the box might contain.
Before the pandemic, I was already planning to downsize our workspace or overall footprint. Our staff members don’t need enormous desks to spread out papers, charts or posters. Now all that’s basically needed is a comfortable space for a person to plug in a laptop. When COVID-19 arrived, the plan started to gel. It pushed us (a lot quicker than we expected) into using the new technology that makes our office work easier and efficient. We learned that working from home is not only achievable but allows staff more flexibility for work-life balance.
Our new digs will have only a few offices for staff to plug-in for desk work, but it will have a large boardroom so that once the pandemic is over, we can once again meet face to face with our partners and volunteers and visitors. The boardroom will also be available for other groups to use. I’m really looking forward to seeing the new space working at its full potential and being able to welcome guests in-person, hopefully sooner rather than later.