Reflections and Predictions: Part 1
December 21, 2021/
CEO Emily Barany, and Senior Project Manager, Kristiana Almeida recently sat down over champagne to discuss their reflections on 2021, and predictions for 2022. Today, we’ll start with Reflections on 2021.
Reflections on 2021:
- BASICS: Nailing our basics and business fundamentals allowed us to remain stable through another crazy year!
- LIFE IS LONG: So build the life you want. This is true for your work/life balance, but also true for building the type of company I want. We’ve been pushing the nonprofit sector HARD to pay people what they’re worth. This sector does some of the most physically and emotionally draining work, and people deserve to be compensated for that.
- DOING THE RIGHT THING ISN’T ALWAYS EASY: VISIONALITY stopped being a “politically neutral” company last year, and while that scared me, I also realized I don’t want us to be working with people who won’t say Black Lives Matter or who don’t believe there is a real gender pay gap. And while I thought this was going to be hard, it’s been awesome. We have great clients now, people who align with our values, which makes my employees much happier.
- SOMETIMES YOU’VE GOTTA LEAP!: We just started offering health insurance…something that has always felt too complicated and too expensive to do. But you know what, this year we decided to just leap and do it. While I wish we had Universal Healthcare , offering healthcare not only gives our employees stability, it also increased their take home dollars because we’re covering most of the cost of their health insurance expenses.
- SMALL STEPS, DAILY: We are NOT going to solve all the world’s problems in one sitting. This year, I really focused on taking small steps towards big goals. In the moment, that small step doesn’t feel like much, but after a year of small steps, you’ll realize you’ve gone far!
- 2021 WAS HARD: I think we all went into 2021 thinking the light was at the end of the tunnel….we had a new president, we had vaccines, it felt like the storm was passing….then it didn’t. By Summer, all the joy and hope had gone away, and we had to figure out how to keep our team and clients motivated.
- THRIVING WAGES: I’ve loved the work we started on this, and I can’t wait to have more time to keep working on it. And I think thriving wages directly impacts DEIJ work. If you aren’t paying people a thriving wage, you will only attract job applicants who can “afford” to make less. Let’s stop that cycle, and stop making excuses. Pay your people more!
- HEALTH INSURANCE: Until America has Universal Healthcare, good employers will offer healthcare. I can’t wait until people aren’t tied to jobs for health insurance, but until then, healthcare that is offered via a company is a form of emotional security. I am proud of Emily when I pushed her to stop kicking this can down the road, bite the bullet, and just get it done. Our employees have been THRILLED with this offering, and based on the amount we’re covering, employees’ take home amounts will go up 4.5% for 2022.
- WE PIVOTED A COMPANY IN A PANDEMIC!: This was something I was so interested in doing when I started at VISIONALITY, and I almost still can’t believe we did it, but we completely pivoted the kind of work we do, restructured the company, got our employees to really dig in and specialize in their roles, and made enough money in two years to give raises, bonuses, and health insurance. HOLY COW!