A Formative Four Years
It’s hard for me to believe that we are already celebrating the fourth anniversary of the founding of The Reis Group. As I thought about this milestone and about my original vision to create a health care public relations agency with the best possible work culture, I was wonderfully gratified to get the news that we were just named one of the “Best Boutique Agencies to Work For” by PRovoke, one of the leading industry trade news outlets.
To be recognized for our culture, being named one of the best in the nation in the “most voluminous and competitive” category, according to PRovoke, is very rewarding for me both professionally and personally. Having a strong, talented, supportive team has been a joy, and it gives me hope for much success in the next year and beyond.
As I looked back at the four-year mark, I found myself marveling at how much has changed in such a short time, even before our world was upended by COVID-19.
When we moved into our brand new Dupont Circle office in Washington, D.C. in 2016, we worked with our tech expert to put all our content into the cloud and to have everything accessible virtually. It’s been an amazing change, particularly with our increased travel schedules, to have the ability to work from anywhere and have access to all our files. And it enabled us to buy the lightest laptops available, which was fantastic news for my poor sore shoulder!
Long before COVID-19, we started working remotely once a week on the day of your choice. But that became too confusing; some people would take it, others wouldn’t. It got to the point where we didn’t know whether someone was in or out of the office. We had a solution: “Work From Home Fridays.” Everyone would get the benefit. Everyone would be required to use video calls as the primary form of communication. Everyone needed to have a home office set up. Wow! Did that ever pay off when the coronavirus hit!
Working from home one day a week is fun. Working from home every day is just hard. I miss my co-workers! Getting coffees together. Chatting about the weekend. Noticing a new piece of clothing or a desk decoration. Being able to tell how each of us is doing by reading our body language. Let’s face it; you really can’t do that as well on Zoom. We are on virtual calls every day together, but nothing replaces being in each other’s presence.
Health Care’s Transformation
Our firm is focused on health and health care. I’ve dedicated the last 20-plus years of my life to these issues. So much has changed so quickly in both a scary and exciting way. Disparities, telehealth, questions about insurance coverage, access to care, prevention, mental health, reimbursement issues, scope of practice, and more. Never have these challenges been more apparent or important.
Supporting Our Community
The sweeping protests around the world are sparking historic changes that have been too long coming. As an employer, I am strongly committed to equity and to having a team that reflects our community, that is open to ideas from everyone, and that supports each other’s successes. Every June, we donate to a cause that helps the community. This year, we made a donation to the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
My Proudest Moment
When we opened our doors four years ago, I said something that still holds true and that I keep near my heart. “To give it my best—to really make it shine—I need to work with the best people; people who share my values and my commitment to excellence. I have to work in a culture of support, in which our team members see that a major part of our work is to build each other up and help each other succeed.” I’m very grateful to know that we are doing that, and will continue…