Get the perspective on what life is like as a new employee in times of Covid-19
In the summer we welcomed two new additions to Ashbridge Partners, here at our office in Gloucestershire.
As any small business owner will know, it’s an exciting time when you are able to expand your team: when business has been strong and you feel confident that this pattern of new and repeat business will continue. Its not a unique situation, but what is unusual, is to bring new employees into a socially distanced environment, engage in interviews and settling in periods through video conferencing and not have the usual personal one on one or team gatherings we would normally enjoy to welcome in new team members.
We asked our new joiners, Tom Windett (Relationship Director) and Charlotte Dunne (Client Finance Assistant) to tell us about their own experiences in this most unusual year of change.
Joining a new company at such an unprecedented time has undoubtedly had an impact on many areas of working life but actually, our clients are as keen as ever to push forward and take advantage of competitive borrowing rates. We are engaged on some really interesting business as a team, and the induction to the company has been pretty rapid, so things are moving along at a fast rate.
I started working with a new client in week one and I’m delighted that we have completed on the transaction already, which has been a phenomenal turnaround from all parties, especially the lender (Lloyds in this case) given that we are hearing about how much pressure the banks are under at the moment.
In terms of the day to day, we can work flexibly as and when we need to – and we are frequently out of the office with clients and other intermediaries – much of which has continued as normal (with the obvious precautions in place). The team have missed the office and there is a definite sense of all of us enjoying the working environment and the buzz of getting on with doing a good job and securing much needed funding for our clients.
Winning new business is something we have talked about a lot. It can be really hard to pitch to a new client remotely – so much of what we do relies on picking up little nuances that you really only get face to face. Zoom works well, but it is functional and can be a bit impersonal – especially when participants don’t know each other, but its a useful tool, and the current situation has probably forced us to re-think how we go about the process, to be more disciplined, and as a result, I think better prepared for meetings.
So what about the future? I think we will embed a lot of what we have learned into working practices longer term – it’s made many areas more efficient, we have focused on holding quality conversations and spent time on looking at how we communicate and the channels we use to do so.
Tom Windett is our client relationship manager – you can contact Tom here.
We also spoke to Charlotte, who handles client centred financial and administrative matters.
“Joining Ashbridge Partners in the middle of a global pandemic has given me great confidence in the skills and attributes that I bring. The job market has no doubt been tough and I am lucky to have secured such an exciting opportunity for such an interesting and innovative organisation.
Coming back to the office after a career break was always going to feel like a big change and doing so in these strange times has definitely given an added complexity! Having nearly all of the team at home when I first started, and only working together virtually in the first few weeks had its challenges, however the team were wonderfully supportive and adaptive.
There is now a great buzz about moving forward, not only with this new way of working, but also with our new team in place. “
It feels as though 2020 has not yet finished with its strange twists and turns and we are on guard for whatever comes next. However, we have taken the bull by the horns, we have adapted and succeeded and we hope to welcome our next new joiners, at some point in the future, in calmer times.
We are open for business, you can contact us by phone, arrange a video meeting or a socially distanced in person appointment.
Contact us to discuss your financing needs.