Hello! I’m Becs, Seeker’s Office Manager. As well as making sure the day-to-day of the agency runs smoothly, I’m also responsible for ensuring the team stays positive when times are tough.
A positive work culture is important here at Seeker HQ. Even before the pandemic arrived, a friendly, thriving team culture was a priority for us—it’s something we pride ourselves on.
But when lockdown forced us to go remote, maintaining that positive vibe got a little more difficult. We had to get creative to help keep morale high. Here’s how we did it!
Wellness is a priority
Mental health means a lot to us at Seeker, and it’s no secret that lockdown has taken its toll on many of us.
As we entered lockdown, we implemented a number of wellness initiatives.
Firstly, I held check-ins with each member of the team to ensure we’re doing everything we can to help them with the transition to remote working. Chairs, desks, flexible hours—whatever they needed to deal with this new way of working.
Seeker also made mental health days part of company policy. Each of our colleagues received an allowance to take a day off when they were feeling tired or burned out, no questions asked. Essentially work-mandated duvet days, these proved invaluable for Seekers, and they will continue to be part of agency policy when we return to the office too.
For last year’s Mental Health Awareness Week, we invited some excellent guest speakers to speak with the team, including SEO’s own Hannah Butcher. Insightful and inspiring, they were a welcome activity during this important week.
We also embraced the Joe Wicks hype, enjoying (or slogging through) a live workout with the poster boy for home fitness. Exercise does wonders for your mental health, and while we were sweating afterwards, the endorphins were in full flow.
Not all our activities were so strenuous though! The Seeker team also took part in a friendly photo competition, taking a snap of a place where we go to unwind. Shots ranged from sunny rooftops to chilled riverside walks, but the final prize went to Jannica’s daisy-flecked garden.
Mental health matters at Seeker, and our activities in 2020’s Mental Health Awareness Week were reflective of our commitments all year round.
The Seeker team will be taking part in this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week over the next week too. The theme for 2021 is nature and the environment, so we’re going to be exploring and highlighting the connection between nature and our mental health. We have lots of discussions and activities planned, both fun and insightful, which we’ll tell you more about soon—watch this space!
Coffee, chinwags, and catch-ups
Who doesn’t love a little coffee and a catch-up?
Without our usual chats in the office, we all needed some time to get together, so we introduced a hump day virtual coffee morning to make up for it. Attendance is encouraged but not mandatory, and conversation can be about anything except work.
From spirited debates on the Cuthbert/Colin cake issue to the perils of house hunting, Seeker coffee mornings are a chance for anyone and everyone to catch up over a mug of our favourite morning beverage.
Coupled with this are team catch-ups, smaller hangouts where individual teams can get together for 15 minutes at the end of the day to chat in a smaller setting. It’s a little thing, sure, but it goes some way towards reflecting that friendly office environment we’ve been without for so long.
Long-overdue (but socially distanced) BBQs & picnics
After months of lockdown and grim weather, the Seeker team were itching to get out and about again.
So, as soon as lockdown restrictions were eased on the 12th April and the sun started showing its face again, our MD Gareth hosted a series of rule-of-six, socially distanced barbecues.
Hosted in the garden of casa del Simpson, Seekers were treated to good food, big tunes, a firepit for when the night got colder and, above all, some top company. Featuring Spice Girls singalongs, garage throwbacks, and the divisive Finnish salmiakki, they were a real joy.
Let’s get quizzical
There was once a time, way back in the first lockdown, when everyone did regular Zoom quizzes and we all loved it.
Of course, after a few months, the thought of yet another quiz became intolerable, but before that, Seeker had its own series of quizzes.
We’ve talked before about Sinead’s amazing Destiny’s Child-themed quiz, but that was just one of many.
When the lockdown first hit and our usual post-work hangouts were off the table, these quizzes were a real lifeline. Created by the Seekers themselves, they were a chance to catch up, unwind, and realise how poor our general knowledge is—what’s not to love?
The Seeker Christmas party goes virtual
We love a Christmas party at Seeker. Our last IRL party took us to The Pig, ultra-fancy restaurant and hotel and post-Glasto A-lister haunt, where we enjoyed some fine dining, fancy cocktails, and an Oscars-style awards ceremony for the team.
Of course, that was off the cards during the year of COVID—but that didn’t stop us from throwing a lovely virtual Crimbo party!
Entertainment featured a general knowledge quiz (with an SEO round, naturally), a Guess That Seeker round (everyone’s got a secret fact about themselves, could we tell whose is whose though?), Secret Santa, a Christmas raffle (featuring plants from our favourite florist, Selva Plants), and the requisite heartfelt speeches that the festive time of year demands.
No restaurant? No problem! The Seeker team were also given a Deliveroo voucher for a takeaway of their choice.
The Grinch couldn’t steal Christmas—and nor could COVID!
It’s been a challenging year for all of us, and the move to remote working wasn’t an easy one for everyone. But when a positive agency culture is at the heart of what we do, it’s crucial that we do all we can to keep that going while we’re remote.
With a new office on the horizon, I can’t wait to see that team culture continue!