In this series, we speak to Xenomorph employees and ask them to share their experience of lockdown, how it has impacted their day-to-day lives and if they have any tips or recommendations for their colleagues. Today’s conversation is with Xenomorph chief executive Ron Zeghibe in London.
Xeno: Tell us a little about yourself and your role at Xenomorph?
Ron: I have been an entrepreneur for over 25 years based out of London and Boston. I am currently the CEO at Xenomorph having led the buy out of the business from its original founders in 2018. Since then, we have been working very hard to refine and expand our core software product while increasing our operational efficiency and reducing the cost base of the business.
Xeno: How has the lockdown changed your day-to-day routine?
Ron: Having back the lost time from my daily commute has been a huge bonus. I now consistently start my day with a workout on my ergometer, have breakfast as a family and then settle down to my day’s work. Without the demand on my time to attend evening events, I also find that my work days can last well into my evening without my even realising it. With all of the family at home, we also consciously developed a highly structured routine around work, school and exercise. The routine made us all more productive and kept us from becoming blimps due to all the baking and cooking that went on during lockdown!
Xeno: What aspect of the lockdown have you found hardest, either from a personal or professional perspective?
Ron: I hate being tied down and not being able to travel. From a personal as well as a professional perspective, it has been difficult being stuck in one place. We have twin daughters now studying in the US who we will not have seen for at least 20 months before all of this is likely to be over. I also miss connecting with clients and staff in person. It is where I learn most about what we are doing well and doing badly as a business. This constant feedback is crucial to improve our service and product for our long established relationships as well as those we are newly on boarding. I find it harder to build a personal rapport with my team and with customers without the benefit of face to face contact.
Xeno: Are there any tips that you would offer to colleagues and industry peers at this time?
Ron: This too shall pass! While we are still weathering this pandemic storm, however, I have found having a real structure to my day and forcing myself to do some form of hard daily exercise has allowed me to remain sane and relatively productive.
Xeno: What positives can you take from this experience?
Ron: More family time together. Although my daughters are in the US, my two sons and wife are with me in London and it has become so normal to sit down at every meal time as a family. Given everyone’s crazy weekday schedules during what used to pass as “normal”, this never would have happened previously. I also believe that having broken the habit of the ritual daily commute to the office, the future will be different even after the pandemic has passed. There is now the proof that a better work/life balance is possible, at least as it pertains to where you decide to work if not about how much you decide to work!