Thinking

COVID-19: Collaboration during isolation

From the Latin ‘collaborare’, meaning to ‘work together’, ‘togetheredness’, arguably, forms the quintessence of collaboration.

From the Latin ‘collaborare’, meaning to ‘work together’, ‘togetheredness’, arguably, forms the quintessence of collaboration. On the contrary, isolation, with its definition synonymous to ‘separation’ and ‘segregation’, is markedly the very opposite of collaboration. How then, do we collaborate in times of isolation, quarantine, and lock-down as the Coronavirus takes hold of not only London but the rest of the world, forcing cities and countries into an isolationism similar to that prior to World War Two?

Whilst isolationism self-defines as a choice against being and working together with others, it doesn’t have to mean a loss of collaboration as a consequence. In spite of being self-isolated, there are multiple ways of staying in touch with the outside world and other people, of keeping constant contact, community and collaboration. 

Here are Clarasys’ top tips for maintaining collaboration and community during isolation:

  1. Keep constant communication
    • Whether its email, slack, hangouts, text, or a phone call, it’s essential to keep talking to others and keeping the conversation going
  2. Maximise opportunities to speak face-to-face
    • If there’s an option between sending an email or chain of messages, and having a quick video or phone call, it's always best to maximise the opportunity to talk in person - giving you a sense of connectedness and personal contact
  3. Set specific times to talk to others
    • Make specific times in your day to talk to others and maybe even make it your mission to message or speak to at least one different person each day!
  4. Celebrate the small successes
    • No matter how small your achievement, make sure to celebrate and recognise where others have helped you or where your team has done something well, in spite of the situation
  5. Have an open chat or zoom room throughout the day
    • Often being alone can feel lonely. It’s nice to have the option to dial in to a video call or have a number to call so that you can speak to someone else, at any time.
  6. Arrange virtual lunch and tea/coffee breaks
    • It’s important that you make time to have those social occasions that would otherwise be filtered in as part of everyday life and office work. Schedule in time to have lunch or a cup of tea / coffee and call a friend or colleague during this break.