After a hard couple of years thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic, we wanted to look back at all of the good things we’ve achieved this year here at Effective, and what we’re most looking forward to in the new year.
Big boss Alastair has led us all through another tough year as he figured out how to run a small business during a pandemic remotely. Organising some great staff socials along the way (when restrictions have allowed), he’s ensured the team remains just that, whilst providing the best service to our clients.
Work highlight of 2021: Successfully steering Effective and the team through a year probably more challenging than 2020, with the ongoing restrictions and personal impact that brings. Running a small business is hard enough at the best of times – but during a pandemic is a whole other ballgame!
I think we can look back on the past 12 months with a great deal of pride, executing high quality work for our clients day in, day out, despite everything.
Hopes for 2022: I’m looking forward to hopefully the end of the restrictions – I don’t think it’s healthy for people to not co-exist for months on end, especially in the business environment.
Plans for Christmas: Hopefully relax! But the nature of what we do means there is invariably an issue or a situation which one of our clients needs help with. And of course, we may have some festive lottery winners to promote, as Camelot is one our long-standing clients.
Account Executive Catherine joined the Effective team just before the pandemic hit in 2020, so her experience here has been mostly remote! Catherine has built her client relationships over Microsoft Teams, Zoom and email, working with our major clients Chambers Wales South East, South West and Mid, City Hospice and BBI.
Work highlight of 2021: Taking a key role in developing business publication Informed for all three editions throughout the year is a major highlight, along with working on City Hospice’s annual Light Up A Life campaign and new Forever Flowers campaign, and helping create Dudley’s Aluminium’s new website.
Hopes for 2022: I’m looking forward to developing myself next year, by improving/learning certain skills in 2022 which will benefit us and our clients.
Plans for Christmas: I can’t wait to spend time with my family, eating all the Christmas food whilst attempting to stop the cats from knocking the baubles off the tree!
OG Effective team member Nat is used to remote working after being based in Plymouth for several years! But that doesn’t mean her work year was normal, as lots of her clients are usually holders of big events, such as Cardiff Business Club and Lord’s Taverners Wales. Nat helped guide them on the transition to remote smoothly and successfully, and enjoyed a few in-person events in between restrictions!
Work highlight of 2021: Attending the Cardiff Business Club’s November speaker event with IMDb’s founder Col Needham was a particular highlight, not only listening to Col’s fascinating stories about how he set up the global business, and casually dropping in his cuppa with Jeff Bezos(!), but also seeing and being part of the return of in-person events. It was also nice to check out the newly opened Parkgate Hotel!
Hopes for 2022: I’m interested to see how hybrid working will evolve, when businesses work from home out of choice rather than necessity.
Plans for Christmas: Having the family over, cooking and eating far too much, watching the Queen’s speech and playing lots of Balderdash!
Social hub Kath has helped integrate new members of the team with ease by hosting (maybe too many) Zoom quizzes throughout lockdown, organising team socials and a brilliant Christmas party for the team to celebrate a successful year.
Work highlight of 2021: 2021 was still fraught with plenty of challenges and I’m so proud of the way that everyone in the team kept pushing for our clients, even when we were facing covid restrictions and uncertainty. The highlight of any day/week/month/year is always seeing our clients get results and we had some really satisfying successes this year.
Hopes for 2022: 2022 is exciting in so many ways and as well as continuing to work with longstanding clients, I’m really looking forward to getting to know some of our new ones, building relationships with them and delivering the results they deserve. I’m also looking forward to getting back out and about, seeing people face-to-face. We had a taste of it in the autumn and it was great; hopefully by the spring we’ll be back to networking and socialising in person
Plans for Christmas: It’s my little boy’s third Christmas, and our first in our new house, and I know he is going to absolutely love it. Not just the presents (although I can’t wait to see him learning to use his new scooter) but the fuss that will be made of him by his grandparents, aunts and uncles. Hopefully all the excitement throughout the day will wear him out so that he will sleep and me and Tom can watch copious amounts of festive films!
New starter Cat joined the Effective team in February 2021, so remote working is all she’s ever known! Getting to know the team via Teams every morning was an odd start to a new job, but she integrated easily thanks to the effort made by our friendly team.
Work highlight of 2021: Having the job in general! It was hard looking for my first graduate role in the middle of a pandemic, and I was ecstatic to get my dream job in a brilliant company. What started as a temporary role has been extended multiple times now which really makes me proud of all of the work I’ve done here.
Hopes for 2022: Meet some of our lovely clients face to face for the first time and develop our working relationships. I also look forward to developing myself further by working with new clients in new areas alongside the experienced Effective team.
Plans for Christmas: It’s going to be great to spend a proper Christmas with all my loved ones after last year’s lockdown Christmas. I’m sure it’ll be a day full of too much food, too much drink and too many games!
Considering Lisa is our Office Manager, remote working out of the office all year sounds a bit strange! But she’s still had her hands full, working hard to keep the business’ finances in order and our clients happy.
Work highlight of 2021: To have kept my position as Office Manager! As we have been home working since the start of the pandemic, there have been many times I questioned my role. No office, why would you need a manager?! I’m hoping it’s recognition of how much more my role involves.
Hopes for 2022: To return to some kind of normality! Although we have a daily Teams call, I do miss the fun and friendships of colleagues at work.
Plans for Christmas: It’s been a difficult year in so many ways. I am just thankful to be able to have my parents around the Christmas table once again. I’m looking forward to quality family time with plenty of food and alcohol in equal measure (very large!).
Lydia has given our new starters the warmest of welcomes and shown them the ropes while maintaining invaluable client and media relationships throughout a hugely challenging two years.
Work highlight of 2021: Working with such a tight and talented team and getting together with some of our National Lottery winners for Christmas lunch at the lovely, Christmassy Mounton Brook Lodge in Chepstow. They’ve won various amounts, from as far back as 2006 and just love getting together with each other, despite lots of lateral flow testing and all the other necessary extras in the current climate.
Hopes for 2022: Looking forward to navigating clients old and new through some really exciting plans for 2022, and beyond. This is really refreshing after the challenges so many of them have faced.
Plans for Christmas: Spending every minute possible with my nearest and dearest and holding them extra tight this year, after a particularly brutal pandemic for us.