Simon Glover, Account Director
With his wife Rachel being a key worker with plans often changing daily, Simon is juggling his career in Civica's Transport business with home-schooling his son George.
How has your working life changed since the pandemic began?
Life has changed considerably, meaning what used to be a ‘normal’ day certainly isn’t any longer. We’re trying our best between us to ‘home school’ George while carry on with our own jobs which results in us trying to split our days so we both get a good stretch at doing some work. This proves more difficult for me the days Rachel has to go into school, where she’s a deputy head teacher. It’s also really difficult for George as he’s only getting to see friends virtually and doesn’t really understand the impact of the virus and how long we’re going to have to be at home for. Rachel and I both also have elderly widowed mothers so we’re trying to see them and do their shopping, along with looking after and checking on our elderly neighbours.
How are you striking a good work-life balance?
We’re lucky that our house backs onto a rugby club so we make sure we use the fields for our daily walk. George and I undertook a litter picking project last week where we cleared the field of rubbish and we then created a graph in the garden – plastic was the biggest culprit! He’s really keen on his rugby and quite a big lad for a five year old so I am preparing him to be the next Alun Wyn Jones!
What is the biggest challenge for you right now?
The biggest challenge is keeping on top of my work but also ensuring my family are safe and well.
How is Civica supporting you?
Civica has been amazing to say the least. My manager has been more than willing to take on any of my critical work or share it out amongst the team, and they’ve also been really flexible around my hours. I try to do a couple of hours early morning and then work in the evening to catch up as well.
What are the upsides to your new working life?
I get to see more of my family and don’t have to spend so much time in the car. I’m also eating less Greggs breakfasts!
What advice do you have for others who may be in the same or similar situation to you?
If you can, try and prioritise the important tasks and split your day into two or three hour ‘shifts’ – this is working well for us. As well, it’s important to keep talking to customers and colleagues. They’ll understand your situation as most are in the same position to some degree.
What are your top tips for socialising and relaxing outside of work right now?
We try to have a Zoom, FaceTime or WhatsApp call with family and friends a couple of times a week over a glass of wine and George also gets to see his friends through apps too. I have a Peloton bike in my garage so I try to get on that daily too to ensure I’m clearing my head and exercising at the same time.
Any final thoughts?
I think the world will be a very different place once this passes and our idea of ‘normal’ will change. The crisis has made such a difference in our community as everyone just wants to help each other: we’re meeting and talking to people in our street who we’ve never seen before and it’s lovely. So, despite it being an awful time with a lot of sad news I really believe some good will come out of this, including a better work-life balance. I hope I’m correct and people just don’t return to old ways. While the pandemic has allowed the earth to stop and breathe, I think it’s done the same for us as individuals. It really makes you think about what’s important in life.