Jacky Howell and Paige Beatty are writing an article for the September/October edition of Exchange magazine about lessons they’ve learned during the COVID-19 pandemic that have helped their staff become closer to each other than ever before. Since so much of this is timely information, Jacky and Paige volunteered to write a “sneak preview” ExchangeEveryDay in hopes of providing some inspiration to people right now. Thank you, Jacky and Paige! They write:
When Director Paige’s center in Washington DC closed for the COVID-19 pandemic, she and her administrative team decided to create ways to keep the staff connected not only to the mission of their program, but also to each other. Paige says, “In leadership you are always balancing accountability and empathy, and during the COVID-19 situation we had to really understand what people needed in order for them to be able to show up for our program the way we needed them to show up.”
One of the many ways created was the birth of “Covid Connections”— a Monday through Friday newsletter that went out to all staff. From informative resources to riddles and quizzes, from a children’s book cover challenge to photos of teachers and their families, this newsletter and the many activities resulting, kept this staff together during a time of social distancing. Teachers volunteered their talents to keep bringing staff together during this time too.
As this staff comes back together to reopen their program, Jacky, who works with the staff as a consultant, asked what are the lessons learned during this time they want to bring back when they are back together. One staff member said, “Those personal connections, of getting to know each other beyond the classroom, I want to hold onto that.”
Look for an article in the September edition of Exchange magazine from this program and their lessons learned.
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