Working apart, together
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed many aspects of our everyday lives, including how we work. When the Ontario government’s emergency orders closed all non-essential businesses, we temporarily closed our offices across the province so that employees could safely work from home. Now that we’re in Stage 3 of Ontario’s reopening plan, like many organizations, MPAC is working towards a gradual transition back to the physical office, while keeping the health, safety and wellness of our employees as a top priority.
Over the past seven months, we’ve supported our employees’ efforts to find new and innovative ways to stay connected while working from home. From virtual team building to video coffee chats, here’s what some of our teams have been doing to stay connected with each other.
“Our team has been gathering on meetings via video conference calls so that we can have a familiar face to attach the voices to. I believe it's been quite helpful to everyone in our group, as it creates a more human and personal interaction rather than creating a feeling of isolation when there are so many voices and so few faces to associate with them. The added benefit is being able to remember what our friends and colleagues look like.”
Mohammad El Dali, Senior Case Management Analyst, Ottawa Office
"Our team was quick to have regular virtual chats and coffee breaks. There have been virtual “stand ups” led by our manager and short calls by others just to check in. Some team members are sending funny memes, and others are sharing stories of inspiration. Our team has stayed connected since the beginning. My team and I had a step challenge involving MPAC employees from across our region. Our Timmins team also had their families join along, which created a sense of community."
Pam Hicks, Property Inspector, Timmins Office
“Our branch has a virtual coffee every week to stay connected, where we chat about pre-selected topics or play a quick game. One week, one of our team members hosted a “Who Am I?” game where we sent her stories about ourselves that no one else would know. She would then read the stories and we had to guess who it was. It was a great way to share some laughs and learn some fun facts about the team. We also have a dedicated social committee that continues to do an amazing job keeping us connected. They have organized a departmental cookbook, shared our favourite podcasts/books, and continually provide us with wellness tips to keep us healthy and safe. I feel incredibly lucky to be part a team that stays connected.”
Kevin Yee, Legislation & Policy Analyst, Pickering Office