By Kim Anderson - Managing Director, Jigsaw Business Solutions
This year, celebrating my 6th Jigsaw birthday on the 17th March was a somewhat different occasion - from home with my housemate and cat, and a glass of bubbles of course. We’ve celebrated several “Jigsaw” birthdays since, with one 1st birthday, three 2nd birthdays and our Client Director Katie celebrating 4 years of hard work and success.
Week 1 of the UK’s lockdown, saw us diverting landlines, delivering laptops, keyboards, laptop stands, mobile phones, and even chairs while we all made the best of our dining tables and homes.
Jigsaw are a sociable bunch, so staying connected has been a huge focus for us in the last couple of months. We have several all team get togethers – stand up on Monday evenings, Joe Wicks every Tuesday morning, knowledge labs on Thursdays and a personal favourite of mine – Jigsaw’s Happy Hour on Friday’s, with a music quiz and celebration of everyone’s best moments from the week. We’ve hand-made Easter Eggs – together on Zoom from our respective kitchens (hair nets included!), teamed up (and dressed up) for quiz night, not to mention all the 121’s, daily team check-ins and end of day catch-ups. Social connectedness from a distance hasn’t been so bad.
Early on, as a business like most, we were daunted by the economic impact and unsure at that point how gift cards and retail would fair. We are very fortunate to work with retail brands with strong growth in online retail channels, and new projects that keep us moving forward. We are delighted by the success of our consumer eCommerce channels for brands like Nike and Boohoo, and thankful that digital gift cards remain popular and allow friends, family and businesses to gift, reward and recognise others. We have been very well supported by our partners and suppliers during this challenging time, and it’s an honour to be part of an industry with an unrelenting ambition to grow.
We’ve been led by the team on what works, what doesn’t work and in the most part, we’ve done pretty well. A weekly team survey tells us what we need to do more and less of, and our Director of People Anna, as always keeps the wellbeing of our team at front of mind. Mental Health Awareness week has come at a good time, a timely reminder to ask ourselves and each other how we’re doing. This year’s focus is kindness and on Monday morning we reminded ourselves of its meaning: – “loaning someone your strength instead of reminding them of their weakness”. Being kind to ourselves and others isn’t necessarily easy, particularly when pressures creep in and we aren’t able to do what we want, when we want, and with the people we care about. Establishing some physical boundaries between my new home office (the dining table in my lounge!!) and my space for rest and recharge hasn’t been without challenge, but is a far cry from the reality that many face right now. So, I remind myself to be kind & at times forgiving, and crucially to tell people when they are doing a great job.
Getting my family together more often on one of the many video chatting platforms is something I plan take with me to the ‘other side’ of this pandemic. I can find joy in watching my niece and nephew in their lounge, along with my Mum in hers – both following dance routines on YouTube. I value now more than ever the support of my colleagues, and thank them along with our clients and partners for being a part of our Jigsaw adventure.