Amy, the PR whizz

Is that Sandra from Everything Chipboard? Amy, here, from Spasm PR. Do you have a minute? Yes, sure, I realise you wouldn’t have picked up if you didn’t have a minute. And yes, I realise I’m already using your minute.

I wanted to update you on the survey we ran for you. You set Spasm the target of raising Chipboard’s profile with key thoughtfluencers, capturing some of the mindspace of home-workers as they ponder whether to return to the office, and — yes, I was getting to that — shifting the 1,000 desks you have in your Hounslow warehouse before lockdown kills the office market.

So we put out a poll to a cross-section of thought-leading professionals and once we threw in one of your free “Cheap-as-Chipboard” mousemats, we had a fabulous open-rate. Sixty-seven responses in all! And — great news! — 97 per cent said they thought they would prefer to work on a flat surface than no surface at all. Hence our grab-line for the mailshot: “Desks enhance productivity, new research reveals.”

It gets better: assuming a vaccine and nationwide testing, 22 per cent might consider a possible return to the office by 2022. That gives us our lead bullet point: “One-third of white-collar workers raring to get back to work.”

Also, there were some great comments. Like this one: “I just want to crawl into a corner and cover myself in a blanket.” We brainstormed that here at Spasm and came up with this line: “Ever since the advent of the soft-sided cubicle in the noughties, office furniture has been waiting for an opportunity to pivot to cosiness: which is why people told us they adore the idea of putting their slippered feet up on Everything Chipboard’s Nordic-style fibreboard-core pod-desks.”

Sandra, if you greenlight this now, we’ll put this out to our network tonight. One million recipients. Actually, we don’t really favour the term “spam”.

Can we offer you for interview? OK — audio only. That makes sense. You do look a little short of sleep. Anyway, building on this success, shall we prep another survey for you? How about one on shelving units and no-deal Brexit? Sandra? Please don’t cry.

Katherine the worried worker

Oh hi, Will, just a quick call to remind you . . . Yes, I know you’re in a meeting! I’m meant to be joining you. No, not in person. I’m not in the office, I’m at home. 

I thought this was a video conference meeting? What do you mean, everyone else is in the office? We’re in lockdown! 

No, I did not know we’re allowed to call ourselves essential workers. Do you think that selling financial advice to high-net-worth individuals counts as a key service?! Really? Er, yes, of course I value my work. 

Anyway, why didn’t I know about this? No, I’m not on the Alt-Goss WhatsApp group. Nor the water cooler Slack channel. First I’ve heard of either one of them. Look: just switch on Zoom, would you? I’m waiting.

Hi, everyone. No, I’m not on the WhatsApp group; no, nor the Slack channel. Oh, there’s a Facebook group too? Old school!

Geoff, I missed the first item on the agenda. The future of the office. I just want to know if this shift to a hub-and-spoke model means we are staying at Thrust or not? 

I can’t really hear you. Can you speak into the audio equipment, preferably facing me. Forget it! I’ll send you an email. Also, I can’t help but notice that the proposed regional offices are closer to where all of you live than to my house. I know that we say that there’s no difference when we’re all remote but that doesn’t seem to be the case . . . 

Hi, I missed that. Did you say lay-offs or pay-offs? 

Email about the rota of business walks? Just checking my inbox. Oh, found it now. I can see these are convenient for you but it’s quite far for me . . . could we meet halfway? Can you hear me?

Oh, it’s lunchtime. You’ve got a Deliveroo. How lovely. I’ll just make myself a sandwich and join you from my bedroom.

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