Returning to campus with malika, isb accountant

For our ISB employees, returning to campus in August meant more than just returning to work. It meant embracing a new way of working altogether.

Malika told us how the lessons she learned during lockdown are helping her adjust to a new way of working while establishing a healthier balance in her life.

"During this difficult time my husband had to remind me that I’m not a superhero and that I have to learn to delegate and let go. Now that I’m back at work, I try to take more time for myself and when I need help, I call out and ask for it. My priority has always been my family. I always try to manage everything alone; I take care of my father, and of my own family. During this difficult time my husband had to remind me that I’m not a superhero and that I have to learn to delegate and let go. Now that I’m back at work, I try to take more time for myself and when I need help, I call out and ask for it.”

There is no doubt that the way we work and use the space in our offices has changed significantly since we were last on campus in early March. Looking after our wellbeing and that of those around us has become a key priority for all faculty and staff.

“When I work from home I work in my son’s bedroom,” says Malika. “I use it as an office when he is in school. In his bedroom there’s just about everything! I don’t have the big computer screen I use at work, so I use my big laptop instead. That said, I’m happy that the school has set up the possibility for us to work from home. It allows for a better organization of my work and I’m finding a real balance between my family life and my job.”

Needless to say, finding the right balance during a time of substantial emotional stress requires a significant change in mindset. When our campus closed, many ISB employees were forced to adapt to new and more challenging routines overnight, juggling the demands of work with their personal commitments. Malika reflects back on the struggles she faced during this challenging time.

“The big challenge for me was managing to do my job while simultaneously becoming a teacher for my son at home. He’s only eight years old and I had to assist him with his distance learning to make sure that he understood the lessons, could do the homework, and so on. At the beginning this was very difficult to manage, but in the end, we found the right balance together.”

Looking back on those experiences, Malika shares some advice that has helped her, and which she continues to treasure in this new reality today.

“What works for me is taking some time for myself, no matter how busy I might be. Finding some time to do something different with your kids is also important: this could be going to the park, cooking or playing something new together.”

Looking back on those experiences, Malika shares some advice that has helped her, and which she continues to treasure in this new reality today.

“What works for me is taking some time for myself, no matter how busy I might be. Finding some time to do something different with your kids is also important: this could be going to the park, cooking or playing something new together.”