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Having worked from home for more than two years now, I think we can all relate to that little voice in the back of our head that loves saying “you need a change of scenery.” Mine typically kicks in after that third cup of coffee.

However, it feels like the weight of the pandemic has made it more challenging for us to listen to that voice and recognize how being trapped at home for so long has impacted our well-being.

Where my usual instinct would be to shrug it off and saunter back to my at-home workspace, instead, in that moment, I chose to take action thanks to Media Profile’s new Work Away Benefit.

We recently rolled out our Work Away Benefit to give all Media Profile employees an opportunity to escape the confines of their work-from-home setup and find inspiration and motivation from working somewhere new. Since we’re all working remotely anyway, this is an exciting way to let our team shake things up and give everyone a little more work-life balance as they explore their new surroundings. Not only that, we support the program with up to $3,000 for each employee to help cover travel costs like transportation, accommodations and more.

Earlier this year, my family took advantage of the Work Away Benefit. Together with family friends, we fled the frigid Toronto temperatures for an adventure we dubbed “Project Chase the Sun.” We packed up the car and drove south to the sunny beaches of Siesta Key on the Gulf Coast of Florida, followed by a stop at Universal Studios Orlando to enrol the kids at Hogwarts at Harry Potter World.

Trading up snow squalls for sea breeze, there were a few things we considered as we planned our trip and enjoyed our time working away.

It’s nice to have something to look forward to

The last two years have been tough and it’s been easy to find yourself stuck in a rut. Planning our work away trip immediately filled our home with new energy and excitement. Picking our destinations, finding a place to stay, even more mundane tasks like tidying the house and organizing our vaccine records were a constant and welcome reminder that something special was coming up on the horizon. 

Planning accommodations for a work away trip

When thinking about where to stay while working away, you think about accommodations differently than your usual vacation. Trying to work in a hotel room with multiple families and children running around sounds like a nightmare, so perhaps consider a short-term vacation rental home with enough space to work and play. Pay close attention to the number of desks, counters, tables and rooms where adults can work and take calls without disrupting each other. Finally, when travelling with children, consider how they will enjoy their time and have fun during working hours. We were fortunate enough to have access to a pool, video games and found a spot near some cool shops and ice cream that we could visit during breaks.

You truly can work from anywhere

We take for granted how much we’ve learned and how adaptive we’ve become while working from home for so long. Apply those skills by looking for ways to work from literally anywhere. Find a quiet café with decent wifi, hotspot from your phone and answer some emails from the beach, take a walking meeting – challenge yourself to work remotely while soaking up the sights and sounds of your new locale. Just don’t forget your laptop power cord, phone charger and a decent external battery pack!

Create balance for yourself

Working away is such a privilege, but even when set up in the most beautiful of locations, it can still be challenging to find separation between work and life. Do what you can to create a routine and designate short breaks to grab a smoothie, take some pictures, or in my case, dangle your feet in the pool whilst getting splashed by children. Also, make plans – schedule time to go see the sun set or make reservations for dinner. Create an environment where you can unplug and take full advantage of the new surroundings for yourself and your family.

While the pandemic has heightened our desire to see the world and seek out new experiences, we’re fortunate that Media Profile is looking at ways to keep our teams engaged and inspired though programs like our Work Away Benefit.

For those out there that have a work away benefit or something similar, the next time you hear that little voice in the back of your head – consider listening and see where it takes you.

Curious to learn more about MP’s adventures abroad? Stay tuned for future Our Take #PassportToMP blog posts where employees will share their work away experiences.

Scott Taber
Vice President

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