Taking on More During a Crisis
The responsibilities of a marketer often vary based on the size of your organization as well as your firm’s specific definition of the term marketing. It is not unheard of for marketing to be considered a catch-all category that covers anything from communications, advertising, and client relations, to the more outer boundary areas like sales, administrative duties, or planning internal staff events.
Currently, the reach of the COVID-19 crisis is far and no one is immune to feeling its effects. Almost every business has tightened their purse strings and cut budgets by implementing layoffs or furloughs. So regardless of whether your plate is typically full of tasks considered outside of your job description or if you’re in a more specialized role, you are probably starting to see an overall need to do more.
Here are some ways to be a team player while still maintaining your usual workflow:
Lend a Helping Hand
If you haven’t already been asked to take on extra work, perhaps now is the time that things are really starting to pile up for people. Reach out and ask if someone could use a helping hand but be sure to clearly communicate how much time you can designate to each project. This shows initiative while still allowing everyone to meet their deadlines and keep the company running smoothly.
Have you always enjoyed writing? Reach out to the content manager and offer to help with all the COVID-19 related content they’re probably needing to produce. Does data entry soothe your soul? Ask your office admin or managers if they have some client lists needing to be updated. People will appreciate that you offered to help, and you’ll get to relieve some stress off them.
Organize and Prioritize
Staying organized and clearly prioritizing your projects is the best way to make sure your usual job duties don’t slip through the cracks. According to this study, our brain can only work with 3 or 4 pieces of information at a time. So if you’re thinking about how hot your coffee is, plugging in your headset to make sure it’s charged, and adding the finishing touches to that marketing budget spreadsheet, just as an email from a partner comes in asking if you can help make their PowerPoint look better before a Zoom meeting on Thursday, you better be sure you make a note of it before your brain moves on to other priorities.
An app like OneNote on your computer (or just a good old-fashioned notebook) where you can keep a list of ongoing projects will help you stay on top of things. Write down requests immediately before you have a chance to spill your coffee or close that spreadsheet without saving it, thus losing that partner’s request to the depths of your forgotten memories.
Keep a Positive Attitude
During this crisis you may be asked to help with tasks you don’t really enjoy. Remind yourself that you may be helping relieve some major stress from the person you’re taking that project from and they’ll definitely remember that. People will be appreciative not only of the help, but of your positive attitude and open mind. Positivity is contagious, so they’ll be much more likely to have a good attitude in return when you ask for their help in the future. Any light you can bring in this dark and stressful time by staying positive will only benefit you and your colleagues as you work toward the collective company goal of keeping the firm running smoothly.
Take a Mental Health Day
Lastly, this pandemic has had everyone feeling overworked and overwhelmed at some point. Don’t feel guilty taking a PTO day to dedicate to your mental health. Be strategic about when you plan to take it, avoiding times around deadlines for big projects or important tasks. Take it at a time when you can be able to unplug and relax. Then you can return to work refreshed and ready to tackle whatever additional job duties your co-workers may need you to do.
Although you may need to take on more work load during this pandemic, it’ll be worth it in the long run. Your co-workers will remember your willingness to help and maybe you’ll even get to find new things you like doing in the process. Together we’ll come out on the other side of this crisis as a stronger and more collaborative team.
About Jenn Gouveia
Jenn is a Southern California native who studied at the University of California, Riverside. She owns a small business with her husband, where she cultivated her passion for both marketing and writing. She is also the Marketing Coordinator for the California offices of the Eide Bailly LLP accounting firm. Outside of work, Jenn enjoys reading, all things fitness, and hanging out with her three-legged dog.
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