#WFH Diaries: Dustin Rideout of Juniper Park\TBWA

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on everyday life, we're chatting with folks in the creative industry to see how they're faring. Here's how Dustin Rideout, chief strategy officer at Juniper Park\TBWA in Toronto, is doing.

Give us a one-line bio of yourself.

Pirate at Juniper Park\TBWA.

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

I live with my partner and two kids in Hamilton, Ontario, which is an hour from my Juniper Park\TBWA office in downtown Toronto. Some like to think of it as the Brooklyn of Toronto. 😊

What's your work situation like at the moment?

I'm spending a lot more time sitting in a chair, in front of my computer, than I normally do. That said, our agency and broader network have done an incredible job providing technology and a streamlined process to stay connected during these disruptive times.

Describe your socializing strategy.

I stay highly connected to both my work and leadership team throughout the day. Personally, I have used this time as an opportunity to reconnect with people who I have lost regular touch with. Every day last week I had a phone or video chat with an old friend, colleague or relative. It's been super easy, as we are all going through the exact same thing, at the exact same time.

How are you dealing with childcare?

I am incredibly fortunate here, as my partner is an entrepreneur who has their own digital business and can take up the bulk of the daily duties. I'm empathetic for those not as fortunate to have this kind of support.

What are you reading?

A lot on self-care, and trying to share what has worked for me. It's so important—not just in dealing with what's going on now, but in your regular everyday life. It's truly the greatest gift you can bestow upon yourself.

What are you watching?

My partner had never seen the Matrix trilogy so we watched that … crazy, right?! Other than that, we have tried to keep the content pretty light.

What are you listening to?

I love podcasts. The Business Of Hype is one of my favorites—the diversity of people Jeff Staple interviews is incredible. Jeff also has a very soothing voice that certainly helps right now.

How are you staying fit?

What do you mean exactly when you say "fit"? 😊 I stay active, take my dog for short walks, stretch often. I'm sure there are better people than I to inspire fitness routines. In fact, a colleague recently started a #workoutfromhomechallenge, where you share a video of yourself doing an exercise at home on our agencywide Workplace group and challenge three others to do the same. So perhaps I'll be called to action in the coming days.

Have you taken up a hobby?

Honestly, it's been so busy that there hasn't been much time yet for self-discovery. I ordered vegetable garden seeds on Amazon … good time to find my green thumb.

Any tips for getting necessities?

In Canada we have some great grocery delivery services, so I have used those. We haven't had to go out yet, so we will see when that becomes a need.

An awkward moment since all this started.

My dog farted really loud in a meeting … everyone thought I was trying to blame it on my dog. Great, now all your readers think that as well.

Best work email you got since all this started.

We are actually trying to email less and video chat more. Every morning I start my day having a video chat with my entire team. It's a ritual I cherish and will continue to do every day.

An aha! moment since all this started.

This is the first time in history that we are all experiencing the exact same thing, at the exact same time. What an opportunity to create a force of unity.

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

That we will get through it. We will care more, love more, and appreciate each other 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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