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What to Expect When Joining PAN’s Virtual Community

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Author: Elizabeth Famiglietti, Chief People & Culture Officer at PAN Communications, headshot
Elizabeth FamigliettiChief People and Culture Officer
What to Expect When Joining PAN’s Virtual Community

Earlier this year, PAN announced that our return-to-office plan would feature a HyFlex model, where our employees could choose the schedule that works best for them – whether that’s a split model between in-office and home, full time at home, or even 100% remote, away from any of PAN’s physical office locations.

Over the last eighteen months, we’ve grown to 41 remote employees in 29 different cities. It’s our fastest growing community of PAN employees. Learn more about how our Virtual Community was developed, how it integrates into the fabric of PAN and more about our dedicated virtual leader below.

How did the concept of building a “virtual community” come about?

PAN has always been a flexible organization and we have always encouraged all our employees to have a healthy work/life balance. When the pandemic hit and forced us all to be remote, we learned quickly not only how resilient our workforce is but how important it was to stay connected in our new virtual setting.

Now, as we begin to open our offices slowly and some of our hybrid workforce is returning to offices voluntarily, we saw a huge opportunity to create an “official” community so our employees who will remain 100% virtual have a fun and engaging experience.

One of PAN’s key differentiators is our dedicated VP/career coach model. How does this virtual community intersect with that management support and development construct?

Every employee at PAN is assigned a dedicated career coach on day one and they are also a part of a dedicated S/VP team. This is the support system where employees work with their coaches to establish their goals (personal & professional), map their progress, discuss their interests, and advance their careers.

If you are an employee who is working 100% virtual, you now have an additional opportunity to be a part of PAN’s Virtual Community as well. Being a part of a community where your colleagues have similar experiences, learning, teaching, working, socializing, and celebrating remotely is our way of saying we want you to have the best experience at PAN.

Learn more about PAN’s mentorship model.

What additional benefits do you see in creating an “official” Virtual Community at PAN?

We are a growing integrated marketing & PR agency, and we are always looking to attract the best and the brightest in our industry, so we believe our HyFlex model where our employees can work from anywhere (in office, at home or a combination of both) allows us to truly engage with so many talented people.

At PAN you will not be forgotten if you are working 100% remotely. You will have a dedicated career coach AND now you will have a robust active community to share your experiences with and build more relationships.

Learn more about the Virtual Community at PAN here.

Why was it important to appoint a leader for this Virtual Community?

Creating this community further exhibits PAN’s commitment to putting our people first, which is one of our core values. We have always been very deliberate and thoughtful when building programs and opportunities for our employees.

Having a proven leader who is passionate about people development and employee happiness is one of the critical success factors of this plan. It was important for us to know there is someone who will wake up each day thinking about our Virtual Community and ensure we are offering opportunities for all our virtual employees while creating a fun virtual environment.

Meet Kate Connors…our passionate leader of PAN’s new Virtual Community!

Tell us about your career and why you are so excited about this new opportunity to lead PAN’s virtual community.

I recently had 1:1s with everyone in our virtual community, and meeting everyone was the best inspiration of all. We have an OUTSTANDING group of individuals in PAN Virtual. I’m incredibly honored and humbled to work with all of them.

See more #WeMoveCareers Spotlights here!

Throughout my entire career, I can honestly say that nothing has made me happier than managing people. I’ve heard peers say that PR is a client services business. While client satisfaction is a huge part of our role, I think PR is a people business. I’ve found that when you focus on your teams’ needs and help them to thrive, the amazing work follows. I’m grateful to bring this passion for people management to a larger scale with the virtual community!

PAN has a growing number of employees who are joining the agency as 100% remote. What are your goals for this virtual community?

We’ve always felt that culture is not about where employees work but how they come together to embrace our company values and collaborate. The goal of PAN Virtual is to create a community of our employees who will be working in a 100 percent virtual environment and to ensure we are providing the best employee experience possible. Through collaboration, communication, tech tools and top-notch management practices, our hope is that PAN’s virtual employees will experience a robust and thriving culture.

Who do you look to as a mentor(s) as you assume this new leadership role?

My first – and forever – mentor is my mother. She managed a huge team of individuals for decades before recently retiring, and I’ve learned so much from her. Having such a business-savvy role model from day one has definitely helped me throughout my career, and I owe so much to her!

My second role model is someone I’ve never met: Eleanor Roosevelt. My first internship was at the Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project in Washington, D.C., where I spent hours devouring her personal correspondence. I found her leadership style incredibly inspiring. I have two quotes from her that I keep on my desk and look at daily.

The first one reads “Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway.” I believe that when you lead with your heart, people feel the impact of your passion and consideration, and it always works out for the best in the end.

The second quote is “Do one thing every day that scares you.” I love to challenge myself on a daily basis, and I hope to inspire our virtual community to do the same!

For prospective employees looking to join PAN’s virtual community, what is your advice for taking the leap into a remote position at a new company?

My advice for prospective employees considering remote work at PAN is to think about this opportunity as an incredible invitation. It’s an invitation to meet individuals from all over the globe. It’s an invitation to re-define your concept of an office community. It’s an invitation to put yourself first. And it’s an invitation we hope you take!

Check out this blog for more job search tips and interview prep for your next move in integrated marketing & PR! Oh, and by the way – we’re hiring!

PAN is Hiring: HyFlex return-to-office schedules

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