Happy 2023 friends!
It’s that time of the year again: An opportunity to look back on what was and start imagining—and planning—what could be for 2023. But this year feels different. While we all know how awful COVID-19 has been, it has also acted as an accelerating catalyst, bringing long overdue change to our industry that is good for both employees and employers.
Media Profile has always focused on culture—one that puts employees first and sets us apart from other agencies. This year, we are embracing new opportunities and working hard to innovate in ways that continue to improve work/life balance, corporate culture and inclusivity across the board.
One way we’re doing this is by acknowledging just how much working from home has changed the way we work, forever. I’ve had conversations with many leaders in the industry who are now insisting that their employees return to the office full-time. But I think the last couple of years have given us the opportunity to rethink the “why” of mandating everyone into a physical space for 8 hours per day. I vividly remember the days when my children were young, and I was stressed, rushing out of the office to catch a dance recital, take them to a medical appointment or just to be home to greet them when they got off the school bus. I also remember times when a day of focused writing at home would have produced a faster, better result with less stress.
Between the calls, meetings and commute hours, life happens. So we’ve put our stake in this somewhat shaky ground and have committed to a hybrid model for the foreseeable future. We will, of course, encourage time in the office for collaboration, celebration, brainstorming sessions or meetings with clients. And the return of events, conferences and client entertaining means we’ll regain that much-needed facetime with clients, and each other.
Taking it further, we introduced Media Profile’s Work Away Benefit in 2022. Work Away gave employees the opportunity to work anywhere in the world for up to one month (with the option to tack on two weeks of vacation, if they wish). To help make this possible, we offered each employee $3,000 toward travel expenses. We did something that made the industry and HR professionals take notice with Work Away, and I was thrilled with the uptake. Twenty-five employees have gone (or are going in the next few months) on their own adventure to date. Unlike most travel experiences, Work Away presents MP staff with the opportunity to experience other cultures and truly immerse themselves in their destination. The trips have been inspiring. Some have visited family abroad, while others have explored places like Europe, South America and India. People also maximized the benefit and bonded with colleagues by pooling the bonus and travelling together. The beauty of empowering our staff to expand their lived experiences past their borders is the expansion of their creativity and worldviews that come with these new experiences. I’m thrilled that we are once again offering our Work Away Benefit in 2023 and I look forward to seeing where Media Profile will go this year.
From a business perspective, this was an exciting year for the agency. We won major prestigious accounts like Arterra Wines, Indigo and Endy and have executed several award-worthy campaigns. We’ve never been an agency that chases industry awards, but I’m most proud that we’ve once again been named one of Canada’s Best Places to Work and Best Places to Work Managed by Women by the Globe and Mail.
Things feel different this January than they have in recent years. We may be looking over our shoulders for the foreseeable future for COVID-19 variants, but leaders can now also start to look beyond the pandemic and put their energy into more creative endeavours and innovations that set organizations apart. At Media Profile, we’re stepping into the new year with an entrepreneurial, creative spirit and hand-in-hand with our client partners. Cheers to 2023 and all that it will bring and be.