As the CEO of Livable, I have been so inspired by our incredible staff and what they've been doing to stay productive and support their communities during shelter-in-place. It isn’t easy to work as hard as they do for our clients, and still have time and energy to give to friends, family and front line workers as well.
Personally, I’ve noticed a big shift in my life as my usual busy travel schedule came to a complete halt due to COVID. Having the extra time with my family has been incredible, and even simple things like taking a stroll around the neighborhood or learning a new recipe for a family dinner with my wife and our daughter have added a deeper dimension to my days.
I’m also amazed how productive I’ve been during this time—hiring five team members, expanding Livable into new markets and working on fresh initiatives we’ll be rolling out in the days ahead.
As you’ll see below, I’m certainly not the only one who has taken this opportunity to reflect on and rediscover what’s truly important. I couldn’t be prouder of my Livable team and I can’t wait to see what they do next.
Daniel S. Sharabi
Staying Strong and Giving Back
Across the board, Livable staff have taken this time to focus on family. Like many others around the world, those with school-age children have had to become impromptu home-school teachers. Collections Specialist Glenda Tatel was surprised how much she enjoyed the new role. “Before, I wouldn't have had the chance and the time to be focused on teaching them things,” she said. “But now, I give them a run-down of what needs to be done and learned, especially in reading.”
Allocation Team Lead Geraldine Gundayao has loved spending more time with her mom, and the two pooled their resources to buy snacks for frontline workers. “One of the heads of our community is a good friend of mine and we gave the food and drinks to him to distribute to his co-frontliners,” she said. “It wasn’t anything big, but we were happy to see smiles on their faces to say thanks for that small act.”
Operations Manager Irene Bautista made an even larger donation to essential workers in her community after COVID restrictions meant canceling her daughter’s long-planned seventh birthday party. Bautista instead held a more pared-back gathering and donated the food meant to feed over 100 party guests to local police officers, all with her daughter’s permission. “She understands the situation, and in fact, she approved helping out others instead of throwing her a party,” she said.
Bautista’s husband Ruff, who works alongside his wife, said that physical fitness has become increasingly important for the family. They invested in a home treadmill to be active at home, which Ruff believes leads him to be an even more productive worker. “We are doing our best to stay fit to be able to work better for the company,” he said.
Account Executive Sarah Hoverson agreed that going for socially distant runs and setting up a home yoga studio has been essential to keeping a constructive and optimistic mindset. “They have helped me stay connected to my body, especially through breath and movement together,” she said. “It helps me practice gratitude and appreciation for my health and having an able body.”
Aaron Mills actually joined the Livable Operations team during shelter in place and echoed his new co-workers’ sentiments about creating new priorities during the pandemic. “I've realized I can be just as productive—if not more—by putting in less work hours and using that time to recoup,” he said. “I handle stressful situations better, think more clearly, sleep better and all of these things compound on each other to make me better at work, as well as at home.”