#WFH Diaries: Al Mackie of RAPP U.K.

As confinement continues in most parts of the world, we're checking in with creative people to see how they're faring. Here's an update from Al Mackie, chief creative officer of RAPP U.K.

Give us a one-line bio of yourself.

Stay at home chief creative officer of RAPP U.K.

Where are you living right now, and who's with you?

In Woking, England. With my partner, two daughters, teenage son and a friend who broke her ankle halfway through a flat renovation.

What's your work situation like at the moment?

Morning Zoom calls in the kitchen. Quiet work in my son's bedroom. And phone calls pacing the garden to get a better signal.

Describe your socializing strategy.

We video call friends and family while we cook during the week. Saturday mornings are now the highlight of my Mum's week—a family Webex with nine grandchildren (ages 1-14) shouting over each other. It's utter chaos and not too dissimilar to our Saturday night catchup with friends. I try to call a different friend every few days as part of a walk or at the end of the day, but I'm definitely missing the serendipitous chats that used to be part of my day.

How are you dealing with childcare?

Just as we went into self-isolation, my partner finished maternity leave so we decided to divide our days into two-hour blocks between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Our youngest usually has a couple of naps, which means we can both squeeze in an extra hour here and there. Six weeks in, I can confidently say that this plan lasts until at least 8:30 a.m. every day.

What are you reading?

Not a lot but I have two books on my desk. Liferider, the autobiography on Laird Hamilton, which was written by a very talented friend. And Widow Basquiat, which was given to me by a very talented friend.

What are you watching?

Looking forward to the next Killing Eve. But this week we've watched Thomas the Tank Engine in the mornings and The Nest in the evenings.

What are you listening to?

BBC Radio 6 music and a little bit of Headspace.

How are you staying fit?

HIIT sessions in the morning with my partner. A run every few days. And at the weekend we've been training with a PT friend on Zoom.

Have you taken up a hobby?

Not really had the time or energy to consider one.

Any tips for getting necessities?

Be patient.

An awkward moment since all this started.

The first time we spoke about a team member losing a neighbor to the virus.

Best work email you got since all this started.

We've moved to Slack so I don't really get emails.

An aha! moment since all this started.

The days feel long when I think about work, but then I remember that I get to spend a chunk of time throughout the day with my kids.

What's your theory on how this is going to play out?

There will be a new normal. I hope it's one where people value and appreciate kindness more.

See the full #WFH Diaries series here.

Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd was editor in chief of the Clio Awards and editor of Muse by Clio from 2018 to 2023.

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