Diary of a Customer Success Manager

How will I survive this time, keep my job, don’t divorce and keep my mental health?

WFH? Now I have to WFH! With two young daughters and a husband with a busy job. Mid-March we started to WFH at HelloMaaS, not totally new, but as a Brazilian woman and Customer Success Manager, I love to be around my co-workers and invite HelloMaaS freelancers to our office in Amsterdam. My job changed a lot……..but not all bad.

No doubt that I am missing the social contact and personal connection, as for those who know me, the best things for me about work is small talk, sharing food and banter. I really enjoy coming into the office and bringing a piece of a homemade “bolo de cenoura”, talk and laugh with each other or even share some “brigadeiros” treats.

As in my case, I know that most people are now quarantined in their homes. Some live alone, others in a house with little space and hyperactive kids. I’m a proud mother of two active 3 & 6 years old girls. Last week they decided to copy a YouTube movie “on how to have more fun with the trampoline in our backyard”. I was on a team call when one of them parachuted way too high in the air, not funny.

I work in an early-stage startup, so speed and output are important. But I also need to help my kids with the homework from school, take care of the house, cook, clean and still make time for myself and try to have some fun. How I will survive this time, keep my job, don’t divorce and keep sane?

On top of juggling many roles at the same time, we all feel anxious about our health and the economy. It’s definitely not business as usual so it’s key for employers and employees to be mindful of how fear may impact productivity.

As a typical Latina mama, what is helping me during this time of WFH is the “Dutch daily schema”, an important family tool to structure and divide tasks and maintain the routine within the kids and husband too. Together, we used our kids play board and wrote a list of what we will do for the whole day including some drawing from our girls. Such activity can cover part of the day, but sometimes, the only thing that remains is a bit of breathing, screaming and believing in unicorns!

Our HelloMaaS team was already set up to WFH with our development team fully remote. We are just spending a bit more time for check-ins. Every morning and at the end of the day, everyone shares what they work on, wins and challenges. Also personal ones. In the end, we’re not machines, we have challenges and have to be in a safe space to share our worries.

But we also need a bit of fun. What’s cooler than team drinks? Okay, in front of our computers it is less fun than in person, but we make the most of it. To our surprise, Louise, our CEO, got us a bottle of sparkling wine with a personal note delivered at home. Adrian, our CPO, is a game master and set us up to play online Pictionary, which was a fun 90-minute “vrijmibo” (Dutch for Friday drinks).

It was so cool to see my colleagues joining the fun from the comfy of their living room couch, some from their garden, others sitting in the attic and me, in the middle of dolls and toys.

Try with your team too! In the end, what everyone wants is to keep the teamwork alive during this crazy time and social distancing.

By Naiá – Customer Success Manager at HelloMaaS