Our teams at QAD have found new ways to connect, stay healthy and support our local communities while working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. We want to continue to be there for our customers as much as we are for each other by sharing some best practices that may help you and your teams to better manage in quarantine. Here are some of the activities we are doing around the world.
Lifting Spirits Across Europe, Middle East & Africa
The EMEA HR Team initiated a project called “Lifting Spirits Across EMEA” to come up with activities that lift spirits and keep communication open. This team spent time speaking on the phone with employees to see what type of creative virtual activities would fit the bill. Here are three key programs implemented:
- Virtual Learnings at Lunch – This is a weekly initiative that occurs on Thursdays. Recent activities have included a high intensity work out by one of our employees in Spain and a muffin making instructional video by an employee in Poland with her special assistant daughter (dressed as a unicorn, of course). Upcoming sessions will include making flowers out of toilet roll tubes, making the perfect pizza dough, speaking Polish and learning Astronomy.
- Shared Recommendations – This initiative features a shareable document where any employee can add recommendations on books, movies, recipes, etc. The goal is to share ideas others might like during quarantine and beyond.
- Virtual Breakfast Club – This is a daily initiative that occurs in the morning. Teams can join country or department specific virtual meetings to have their coffee or tea and breakfast together. It is a time to catch up, see each other, and get ready for the day ahead.
Charly Newton-Coombs, QAD Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist for EMEA and project team member, shared, “It is something that everyone has got behind in one way or another. Even in this difficult time, this has created a way for people to come together and connect. It has brought some light to the week. They are smiling and having fun.”
Aleksandra Kraus, QAD Senior Human Resources Representative in Poland, and her unicorn assistant delivering a ‘Virtual Lunch and Learn’ on how to make carrot muffins.
Fun Team-building Games and Recognition in Asia Pacific
Teams in Asia Pacific inserted fun intro games and activities into their virtual meetings to lighten up each other’s moods and get to know each other better. Intro activities have included Zumba workouts, Chinese hand move games, word games, Damsharas (charades) using QAD terms, and Truth or Lie, where there were pre-arranged truths and lies and you have to guess the team member. Rupali Mahadik, Senior Manager, HR Operations for QAD India shared, “The meeting intro games are fun, and we connect with teams to understand the other side of their personalities, and it is a stress reliever as well.”
Recognition for achievements is a big part of our culture at QAD and part of what earned us recognition as a Dream Company to Work For this year. We continue the celebrations in virtual meetings. Award categories include Support Person of the Month, Service Award, Spotlight, Kudos and Champion.
The QAD India HR Team warming up for their weekly meeting and keeping it fun.
The QAD Thailand Services Team holding their weekly Catch-Up Meeting.
A Friendly Fitness Challenge in the Americas
The QAD Total Rewards Team, which oversees benefits to QAD employees in the Americas, started a friendly fitness challenge where gift certificates are given out in monthly drawings for teams who complete a minimum amount of fitness activities.
Example activities include live or recorded video workouts with walking, running and meditation. Bonnie Baker, QAD Benefits Manager shared, “Our employees like the opportunity for variety, to choose activities that fit them, that meet their needs and their limitations.”
Competing in teams has added a sense of comradery and a way to encourage colleagues to stay active. Some team members even coordinate work out times. Teams also share pictures and encouraging comments on group chats.
Phil Vazquez, QAD Senior Benefits Analyst, on the fitness challenge shared, “The response has been great. We had 190 people join the challenge on the first day. There has been a lot of appreciation from the employees. People are looking for ways to stay connected that is not just a Zoom meeting. This has created a way to do that and stay healthy.”
Terry Onica, QAD Director Automotive out on a run; Annasaheb Rahane, QAD Principal Software Engineer doing yoga; and Kelly Byam, QAD Global Account Manager getting ready to jump rope.
Serving Our Communities
When Keith Braney, QAD Director of Global Sales and Marketing Operations, learned that his county had a request out for medical supplies, including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), it really hit home for him. The doctors and nurses his family interact with regularly may not have had what they needed to fight against COVID-19.
PETG headbands printed by QAD’s Keith Braney and Tony Winter.
Keith found the 3D printing specs for protective face shields, enlisted the help of Tony Winter, QAD CTO, and they started printing. Tony also connected their efforts with STEMbassadors, an organization that works with local students to print face shields. As of April 16, they produced just under 400 PETG Headbands contributing to STEMbassadors’ collective numbers of 2,000 face shields supplied to hospitals across their county.
Malaika Kattke, QAD Director of Global Learning, has been sewing masks to give to members of her family, her neighbors and friends who are emergency workers on the frontline or are classified among high risk groups. She wants them to know she supports them and thanks them for their service.
Malaika also enlisted the help of her daughters as her design and sewing consultant, tester and model. She has been distributing masks to nurses and high risk groups for weeks now.
Face masks that QAD’s Malaika Kattke and daughters Madison and Siena sewed for their community.
Stay Connected, Be Agile and Keep Focused
We hope there were ideas here that inspire you and can be shared with your teams. We continue to find ways to stay connected with each other through this pandemic so that we emerge stronger than ever. Thank you to all of our QADers who have remained agile and found creative ways to connect and work diligently to ensure we are supporting our customers, communities and each other through these challenging times.