Mikaela Reyes
Mikaela Reyes

Life In the Time of Corona

In the past few days, we all hastily had to alter our day to days – whether that’s figuring out how to best WFH with children, finding new ways to earn a living or figuring out how to teach our dear students virtually, we drastically changed the way we’ve been living.

It’s tough! Businesses like mom & pop shops are suffering from a lack of customers. Students are hindered from the proper education they deserve. Extreme extroverts (like myself) are unnaturally introverting!

But in these tough & isolating times, I’m observing how limitations are catalysts for newfound gems. No way am I saying this is a blessing in disguise, but that there are a few pleasantly surprising outcomes coming out of it, now that we’re forced to look at things in a different way.

As a simple, personal example, I’ve never had a WFH setup. Why bother spending on a desk & chair when I could always go to the office? With mandatory WFH, I decided to create a space for myself – and I’m loving it! On top of allowing me to get work work stuff done, I’m also able to accomplish personal work (e.g. writing, taxes, side projects, mindlessly browsing social media) more productively & ergonomically (hooray for diminished neck pains!) It’s a cute space carved out just for me & has become my new favorite spot in the apartment!

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Our little WFH setup (it’s in the works, ok!)

I’ve seen it manifest at work as well.

I’m part of the Women in Product leadership team. Many events we’ve hosted have historically been in-person. We’re continuing some internals events virtually. If they pan out well, we’ll invest in making external events more accessible for women everywhere!

Gradually, teams at LinkedIn are also thinking about how this situation affects our roadmaps. Some are temporary changes like LinkedIn Learning making WFH courses free & the editorial team curating Coronavirus updates. While others, like LinkedIn Pages launching event creation, are meant to stay. (Stay tuned for more in the next couple weeks!)

On a global scale, I’m excited about how tech will evolve to be more inclusive, more globalized & more personable.

In-person activities, once limited by proximity, can now be accessible to virtually anyone with an internet connection, leveling the playing field. Take *more* Ivy League classes online, participate in virtual YCombinator Demo Days, join a dance class from your favorite dance teacher on the other side of the world, or kickback, relax & attend that far away conference from the comforts of your home.

Attending virtually becomes the norm (there’s no other choice!) thus leveling the experience for all participants. I imagine more investment will be poured in making these remote experiences feel like we’re in the same room. One step closer to teleportation!

Lastly, I’m especially amazed at how everyone’s gone above & beyond to help their communities, strengthening our relationships with one another further.

Whether that’s cheering each other up in virtual lunches / happy hours…

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Honestly something I randomly found on the Internet when search “virtual happy hours”

…organizing remote exercise classes to keep each other fit…

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My Groove Generation dance team exercising TOGETHER <3

…offering free/discounted services to people & businesses in dire need…

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…hosting webinars to give tips on bolstering productivity & mental health…

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…or connecting with friends & loved ones near & far. 🙂

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Wherever you are in the world, I hope you’re staying sanitized, keeping healthy &, amidst this super duper tough time, finding surprisingly pleasant gems worth keeping.

P.S. I have free LinkedIn Premium to give to job seekers in dire need. Reach out to me especially if you’ve been impacted by the COVID-19 + are a woman/minority/international student & need help looking for a job!