Home Sweet Office
At this magazine, our work culture is based on trust and respect.
Here at In The Hills, we’ve always been decentralized. All the folks on our masthead work from their home offices, scattered across the towns and countryside of Headwaters. And now with the rest of the world catching on to the idea, we like to think of ourselves as trendsetters – who can vouch for what a very fine way to work it is.
At this magazine, our work culture is based on trust and respect. In a business driven by hard deadlines, I have faith as publisher that our talented and thoughtful team understands their jobs, represents the magazine professionally, and that we’ll all get our work done on time. And so it has proven. But how and when we work is up to each of us. Some of us are morning people and some work best at night. If there’s a child to get to swim class, a parent-teacher meeting to attend, a visiting friend to pick up from the airport, or even a midday yoga class to make, personal schedules get juggled and balanced accordingly.
As for the social aspect of a formal office, or so-called water-cooler creativity, well, although we mostly communicate electronically on business matters, working remotely hasn’t stopped ideas from flowing or friendships from being forged.
So is it all perfect? None of us would probably go that far. And Covid has certainly added some pressure points to everyone’s carefully orchestrated schedules, but because here at the magazine we were already used to the idea of working from home, perhaps we were able to adapt more readily.
In this issue, writer Paul Webster looks at how the pandemic-accelerated trend to working from home is playing out across these hills, as well as the big problem that stands in the way of making it a happy reality for more of us – that is, our terrible, horrible, no good, very bad rural internet. He also reviews some of the initiatives underway to solve that problem, though he finds a broad-based (make that broadband-based) solution for everyone is probably still years away.
In her Headwaters Nest column, Bethany Lee notes, “Over the past few months, we’ve certainly become familiar with our own four walls.” If your family is like Bethany’s, for whom managing the lockdown meant discovering a new zest for self-reliance and DIY projects, this issue also offers plenty of inspiration, from growing and preserving your own produce, to redecorating with the durable comfort of vintage furniture, or to reducing your reliance on the grid.
We’re not out of the Covid woods yet, so keep those home fires burning – and stay safe.