Over the past few months, COVID-19 has upended the daily lives of people all around the world. While disinfecting our hands and wearing face masks have gradually become a part of everyone’s daily routine, the movement of employees out of offices and into their homes has created a completely new work environment.
Most employees began working at home in March, giving companies a few months to decide if their summer internship programs were going to run. Many college students found themselves unemployed when companies decided to suspend seasonal programs due to the difficulty of working online. Thankfully, Something Digital was able to make a seamless transition to virtual work with the help of technologies such as Microsoft Teams and GoToMeeting.
My name is Josie Steinberg and I am this summer’s Digital Strategy Intern. I am a rising sophomore at Tufts University, and I am majoring in quantitative economics and minoring in fine arts. When I started at SD in the middle of June, I was worried about getting to know my coworkers and learning how to make a difference virtually. During my first week, my schedule was booked with orientation meetings with the many different teams: Development, Digital Marketing, Project Management and more. SD did a very effective job of teaching me their values, structure, and goals all through my computer screen.
While the SD employees are all intelligent, well-rounded, individuals with industry expertise, what makes the organization really special is the daily use of teamwork. This global pandemic has created a nationwide trial run for how collaboration, engagement, and productivity are going to persist without time spent in-person. Given these circumstances, SD has not lowered the bar. Instead, they have created a captivating online community that gives everyone the opportunity for the regular exchange of ideas. I constantly learn new skills in my morning meetings with my supervisors. From discovering how to navigate Google Analytics in my first week, compiling reports in GROW, creating QBR decks, and researching 2020 eCommerce trends, I quickly became well-versed in a whole world of work that was initially foreign to me. My supervisors are always available to chat via Teams, which is an integral part of making new hires feel comfortable, welcome, and productive while at home.
Social interactions influence physical and mental health. I thought that creating substitutes for time spent in-person was going to be difficult, but SD showed everyone that forming an online community was easier than originally anticipated. The outstanding SD human resources team organized weekly games, special activities, and even yoga sessions to get people talking and smiling throughout the week.
My virtual internship at SD has been a positive learning experience thanks to all the amazing people that work there and the online community they created. Working from home comes with expected challenges such as getting distracted, but with the right leadership, online work can be just as engaging and efficient as work in a shared physical office. COVID-19 is presenting people all over the world with new work-life challenges. SD embraced this challenge and created something wonderful: an online hardworking community, ready to grow and welcome new employees. I feel so lucky to have learned and worked alongside everyone at SD this summer!