Virtual Happy Hours and Dogs: How our Agency has Maintained Our Culture During the Quarantine

When stay-at-home orders were first issued across Nashville and St. Louis (and much of the US) our immediate thoughts went to ‘what do we need to provide the team in order for them to be successful and productive in this new environment.’ Well, a couple weeks in and phone calls, texts, emails, instant messages, and more video calls crammed into 14 days than anyone has previously had in their entire professional career have ensured that business goes on. But what about the cultural aspect of our agency? How could we make sure the social and fun elements transcended the virtual walls?

Well, we may be a little stir-crazy but our Snapshot team feels like we’ve got this covered.

Morning Huddles

As long-time practitioners of Rockefeller Habits, our teams have always held daily morning huddles to share our goals for the day and give us a chance to move any barriers out of the way before the real workday begins. Since the team would now be working in separate physical locations this was a no brainer to maintain. While we may have swapped conference rooms for video calls and jeans for PJs, each department continues to meet separately for 10 minutes before coming together as an agency to share good news from the previous day and any announcements with the greater team.  

Daily Happy Hour

With our team being a group of social creatures, it’s no surprise we only made it two days before we decided we missed each other like crazy and instituted a virtual happy hour so we could catch up on life outside of the “office”. Every afternoon at 5 our team grabs a cold one, an iced tea, or on a rough day, something fancy on the rocks from their respective homes and hops on a Zoom call to talk about well, everything, anything, and nothing at all. To keep things fresh, we’ve gotten dressed up in our St. Patrick’s Day best and held a Yappy Hour where everyone showed off their 4-legged co-workers.

SSI Cribs

Everyone remember MTV Cribs? Yup! With such an emphasis on video calls we kept finding ourselves trying to get a peak at everyone’s surroundings on the call (while focusing on the very important business tasks at hand of course). Enter, SSI Cribs. On certain days during Happy Hour a team mate will take us on a virtual tour of their apartment, condo, or house and show us some of the things that mean the most to them that we might not ever get the chance to see. Tours of the refrigerator and pantry are required (to scope out who’s got the good snacks and TP stash) and bonus points for dragging unwilling family members or unsuspecting pets into the “episode”.

Zoom Backgrounds

This is one we’re sure everyone is getting in on now but our team has been having a blast with the Zoom backgrounds. From hanging with the Tiger King to taking it back to Senior Prom, the best part of these is never knowing when or how they’ll pop up. One of our graphic designers had us cracking up the other day on morning huddle when he showed up in a full suit with a combover to give us a weather report.

In times like these it’s important to remember that there so much more to keeping the team productive and happy than just “the work stuff”. These silly things help keep morale high and people feeling connected to others, and will make a world of difference to our team who can return to the office bonded and in high spirits.