You can never care too much for the ones you truly love! And we at Wunder love our families – in the broadest sense of its meaning. They are the ones that actually stand behind our success. If our beloved ones are happy and healthy, we are too – our productivity raises and we are ready to achieve bigger goals. This will be the story of those numerous ways of how we support and celebrate the families of Wunderers.
Time, time, time
Yes, time is the most valuable asset when it comes to people we care about. How often have you heard someone rushing a child because mommy has to get to a meeting in time or skipping a basketball game because daddy has to work late? We at Wunder stand up for a healthy private and work-life balance, meaning you can easily spend those extra 15 minutes with your kid or take the dog for a walk in the middle of the day as long as you manage to get the work done. Flexible working hours and the opportunity to work remotely is something Wunderers treasure a lot. De facto, one of our colleagues has stated that she feels like becoming a better mom since working at Wunder because she can easily balance the family and the work-related needs.
Another way to spend more time together is the opportunity to bring your family to the office (when it is safe). We are always happy to meet the closest people of our colleagues and lunchtime coffee at the office with a spouse, mom, or a close friend is definitely an option. In each of the Wunder offices, there is a special place for children with toys, puzzles, colouring pages, etc. to spend time and play. Most often, our little guests are visiting during the summer or after school. In autumn, our colleagues in Finland celebrate the annual “Bring your child to work” day where last year there were 15 children at the office designing their own websites.
And of course – the pets are welcome at the offices too. In our Helsinki office dogs are so frequent guests that we even had to create a Dog calendar to ensure that all the furry friends won’t show up at the same day, and guarantee that if there is a need to have a dog-free office for some particular day, that is super easy to arrange (just by booking all the four “slots”).
Of course, it is possible that some louder giggle or happy bark can come along with our guests. That’s exactly why those kids and pets friendly places are located in office common use areas. In that way, the parents can continue to work with keeping an eye on their kids, but those who don’t want to be disturbed can be easily avoided the spots and go to more quiet places to focus on work. Nobody has to feel like his guest is bothering someone and it is a win-win for everyone.
“When I shared the news about my pregnancy with Wunder, it was received really well and we were congratulated. It made me feel very happy. I received many WunderHugs congratulating us and even got a cute plush toy with a card from colleagues wishing me a good pregnancy and maternity leave. I felt people were genuinely happy for us.
Some time ago I visited the Helsinki office to present our baby and was planning to do it again as many colleagues wanted to see her, which is nice. But then the coronavirus situation came, so sadly it isn't currently possible. I miss my colleagues and when the time is right, it will be exciting to get back at project work.”
Celebrating life events
Big or smaller, there is always something great to celebrate. We are happy and honoured to be there for our colleague’s life events like new family foundations, new babies, new first-graders… Each of these events is received with excitement and followed with greetings and WunderHugs. A flower bouquet and a gift card to the new family or the happy parents is a nice addition to all the love people share with each other. Our colleagues in Latvia love the Wunder babies so much that on top of these greetings, they gather some layette money and hand it to the family along with a handmade teething toy in the shape of a carrot.
Last year in June we started a new tradition – a Wunder Family day. In each of the Wunder countries, the families gathered together for a nice day full of adventures, explorations, and a picnic at the end. We absolutely loved the idea of getting to know the families of other Wunderers a little better and we are sure that the family members enjoyed it too. This year’s family day hopefully will be held in August (fingers crossed) and we will have to be a little more creative. But we are more than sure that despite the restrictions, we will find a way how to be together.
On top of these initiatives, our WunderSanta was extremely thoughtful last Christmas and prepared a nice carrot-branded T-shirt for every little second-generation Wunderer, so they can dress like their moms or dads. And every time they put on their T-shirts, it is a reason for a little celebration.
“It’s all about trust and I always care about it. It’s trust and encouragement that I have been sharing to my teammates when working together on a daily basis. It’s trust from my side to my team members, I know many will grow over my paternity leave much faster than they would do it otherwise. It’s awesome to be one of them who can get this trust of going on paternity leave from management and company side. I have always stood for family values in Wunder. It’s great not only to build a family friendly company, but at times I really enjoy paternity leave with my third child. I’m thankful for the trust and opportunity given by Wunder to enjoy this time fully!”
Staying in touch
The moment when someone leaves for parental leave can be really exciting and hard all at once. The daily routine and the people that accompany you change radically as well as your daily duties. It all works out just fine for the first few months but sooner or later you start to miss the “good old work-life” or at least you start to wonder, how the company and colleagues are doing. To reduce the feeling of missing out we at Wunder stay in touch with our parents as much as possible.
What we do here is really simple – we stay in contact. We inform the new parents about bigger company decisions and invite them to join events like office breakfast or Family days. In Latvia where we have quite a few colleagues on parental leave, we even created a WhatsApp group to ease the communication with them.
Another nice link with the company while being busy with family matters is the Wunder bonus package. Starting with Birthday gifts and ending with free time activities – all the bonuses and benefits can be used as well while being on parental leave. And our parents really do enjoy them, because this as well is a perfect time to take good care of their health and even start a new sport, like morning swim or yoga class.
Anyhow our new parents have found their best way and intensity on how to stay in touch with Wunder while being physically away. We kindly invited them to share their thoughts and you can read all over the article what they said 🙂
“I like that I and my family are still invited to events at work. I enjoy that we have a group of like-minded people at our office who get together and discuss real-life topics and goals. I also try to keep up with company news via Slack while I am away from work. While being on parental leave I have a totally different focus every day so work-life tends to be a distant memory. This helps me stay more connected to my colleagues and still feel like I am a part of our team.”
Little but sweet
Just as much as we value all the hard work our Wunderers do daily, we value the importance of their “support teams”. We truly believe that no money can buy love or happiness, therefore small but sweet gestures with a great added value are our way to say “Thank you!” to our beloved ones.
And as shared joy is double joy, we are happy and honoured if our care for people has also been recognised officially. In 2018 and 2019 Wunder has received status and certificate of “Family-friendly workplace” which is granted by the Ministry of Welfare of the Republic of Latvia. Looking forward to mid-June for the results of this year and if our certification will be approved for another year, you definitely will hear from us!
“Even though I have been on my maternity leave for one year already, I still feel like I am part of the company. I regularly get invites to company events and happenings, but it is all up to me if and how much to participate. There is no sense of obligation, which currently is super crucial for me.
Time to time I chat with some of my colleagues on WhatsApp, and we laugh together about the fun stuff happening in our offices + I participate in Wunder Endomondo challenges and enjoy team spirit by competing with others. When colleagues send me candy on my birthday or some warm WunderHugs, it really makes me want to get back to work as soon as possible.”