A message from ThinkPlace Singapore during COVID-19
Office spaces around the globe look empty and abandoned. Circuit breakers, lock-downs, Dorscons or Level 4s - whatever you call them, they have changed the way we are currently living and working.
At ThinkPlace Singapore, working with people is at the core of our business, as it is with many other consultancies and agencies. We are used to engaging with clients (and each other as a team) on a daily basis. Our valuable face-to-face time has disappeared, replaced by zoom links and digital whiteboards.
We wanted to share a bit about how we are working, both with our clients and as a team, to maintain our high standard of work and energy from our homes.
How are we staying connected?
We’re injecting a bit of fun where possible! Lunch Masterchef challenges, creating team poses with our videos on Zoom, nominating team members to lead us in stretching exercises – it’s the laughs these small activities generate that keep our morale up.
We have our videos on, every time. This helps us continue building rapport with our clients and one another. It also means our communication is much more like the real thing. You can read body language and get visual cues to help conversations feel more natural.
We’re approaching everything with (more) empathy. Whether it’s parents with small kids at home, technology challenges, or hot days with no air conditioning in the ‘home office’, everyone is struggling with something. Along with it being a cornerstone for a design researcher, practicing empathy with each other during this unusual time is vital.
How are we staying on track?
We’ve digitised all the physical tools we use in the office to help us plan our work. While Monday morning all-team stand-ups used to involve spending time together in front of the huge planning wall with post-its in hand, we now spend that time together remotely. Project planning and progress walls are housed in Trello and we’re capturing key information and documentation in Airtable (a more friendly form of excel).
We’re scaling up our digital services, exploring new tools for collaboration. Even though we’ve always offered different online services, we are prioritising upskilling these by testing new technologies and programs that will improve our services while we work from home. Many of these tools will be useful even when working together in person becomes a reality again.
We’ve created digital templates and new processes to optimise our work online. We are developing and sharing templates across the global ThinkPlace network to build on each other’s work, continually iterating and improving our content. Being part of a global team of more than 130 ThinkPlacers across 8 offices means we have a huge network of colleagues to share ideas and learnings with.
What can you expect from us?
We are in this together. We will continue to support our clients remotely, maximising our time together while working effectively apart. We can help you to learn new online tools and methods to get the most out of working from home. Where useful, we’ll also share templates and tricks for online collaboration that are working well for us.
We’re available anytime to help. You can bounce ideas off us, sound out your problem statement, shape up a project or just talk about how we’re coping through these unusual times. We’re here, just an email, phone call or video link away.
You can also reach out on advice on how to shift co-design workshops, consultation workshops, research, user testing or training online, or to use our Airlabs service to stay connected to your ecosystem and to the people you are trying to help.
Get in touch today.
+65 9046 0340 | info [at] thinkplace.com.sg (subject: Airlabs%20Enquiry)
Stay safe and healthy,