Our new PR & Social Executive, Emily Burton, gives us the low-down (or should I say lockdown) on how she found starting a job in the ‘new normal’ world.

It’s not every day that you start your career during a pandemic, and I can’t say it was an aspiration of mine. But, along with many other people, I resigned myself to starting this exciting new chapter of my life via video chat, only ever seeing my colleagues’ heads and shoulders.

On my first day, I made sure I woke up early enough to make the arduous journey from my bedroom all the way to the kitchen for breakfast. The plus side of working from home is that my commute has been cut from 30 minutes to 30 seconds, giving me plenty of time to consider all of the ways that I could fail miserably in my first week.

Before long I’m back in my bedroom, having squeezed into the corner of my room a rickety school exam desk that I bought at the last minute. Mug of tea at the ready, all that was left was to meet my colleagues for the first time – a daunting prospect as a self-confessed technophobe. Am I on mute? Is my video on? Shortly followed by, what if it’s really awkward? Luckily, I had absolutely nothing to worry about. The team were incredibly friendly and welcoming and made me feel very at ease, despite the fact I was sitting in my bedroom with strangers.

Working remotely has been a unique experience. Not everyone sees their colleague wrapped up in a blanket in their first week. You get to know your colleagues in a different way and truly grasp the company culture. Although my diary was crammed with training sessions and inductions, I had regular chats with my team who made me feel totally comfortable. If people are getting on so well over video chat, then the office must be a laugh! Throw in some humorous interruptions during our video calls – barking dogs and an angry wasp – and I quickly felt like I belonged.

I’m now a couple of weeks into my new role, and it’s been awesome. If anything, working remotely has made me even more excited to get into the office and meet my lovely colleagues face to face. I’ve felt so welcomed during my short time here, and I can’t thank One Black Bear enough!