A joyous call with Shanghai

The two things that characterise working in business development here at the offices of CAMRADATA and Funds Europe are travel and remote working. It is not unusual to have a meeting at a conference in Luxembourg, write the proposal in the BA lounge at Dubai airport, have a follow up call in a hotel room in Singapore then finalise the details at an office in New York. Okay, that would be unusual; but only slightly.

Currently, working in the UK is both extraordinary and familiar. It is extraordinary in that I’ve never spent this much time without meeting clients face to face. In addition, being away from colleagues is not a problem when they are all working together back at HQ. However, when everyone is working remotely a simple typo in a group email has the potential to generate twenty confused replies that can only be rectified by a 30 minute conference call. Erm, sorry about that. 

I’ve worked on trains, planes, trams and boats; in cafes, hotel rooms, airport lounges restaurants and bars. Working at home is easy, except when you have been given no choice, that’s when a 14-hour red eye flight in economy starts to look appealing. At this precise moment we don’t really know how long this will last and that may be the hardest part.

Therefore, I’m delighted to share with you a conference call I had with Shanghai this morning. Today was their first day back in the office and it was one of the most joyous calls I’ve had this year. For them it was a return to normality and for me it was proof that this, too, will pass.

As Emily Dickinson wrote: Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul – and sings the tunes without the words – and never stops at all”.

Fine words, indeed – though it would have helped if she’d added “and always using a spellchecker when emailing colleagues if they are working remotely”.