Holding image

Quarantine Qs with Joe Perkins

Hi! What’s your name, what do you do?

Hi, my name’s Joe Perkins and I’m the Managing Director of Chaptr.

How’s working from home? What’s your setup like?

I’m actually pretty used to working from home – I live in Brighton, which is a fair ways from the studio in Southampton. That said, it’s different to normal. My wife and son are home more, so I’m not entirely alone – it’s a fair bit cosier in the flat. In a way, it’s nice to know everyone else is working from home, selfishly speaking, it’s nice to know I’m not missing out on anything happening in the office! The biggest change I’ve found is on the weekends. It’s a bit harder to look forward to them when you’re stuck in the same four walls you were during the week.

My set-up is a desk in the corner of my bedroom in a little alcove, it’s an old fashioned desk with lots of drawers, a monitor, my MacBook and a cool chrome lamp. Not a lot of natural light in my little corner. The cafetiere is never far from my desk.

What gets you through the workday, any tips?

The thing that gets me through is being able to take my dog out for a walk at some point. That’s a really freeing experience, mentally and physically, so I’m glad I can do that.

As for tips… It’s all the little things. I look forward to my cup of coffee, taking five minutes out to do the washing up. I try my absolute hardest to refrain from social media during the day. I know some people can’t do that, but it helps me focus. I’ve read things about scheduling in a couple of ten-minute breaks during your day – that works for some people too. 

I think keeping a routine is vital – being at your desk for the 9 o’clock meeting, trying your hardest to make things “normal” for yourself during the day. Try and find something to make you laugh, or reflect on something you feel grateful for. Oh yeah, and stretch. 

How many cups of tea are you on a day?

Actually just the one! Well… a full cafetiere a day. I suppose that’s probably more than one cup. I have a cup of tea when I wake up, the coffee during the day, and then it’s all about keeping myself hydrated.

What’s the soundtrack to your isolation?

You know, I’m not great at listening to music while at work. My soundtrack has mainly been my dog Loki barking, and my son Isaac hollering as and when he wants attention. NB: I love them both very much!

Watching or reading anything good?

Mainly just trying to stay updated with the global situation and how it will be affecting businesses. It’s obviously vital for a small business like Chaptr to know what support is available to us. In terms of leisure – I’ve been reading a bit of Lee Child, the Jack Reacher series is a bit of a guilty pleasure for me, it’s a good form of escapism.

If you weren’t working, what would you do with three weeks off?

I should probably preface this with the fact that I have a baby boy, so if I really had three weeks without any responsibilities, I’d spend as much time with him as I could. However, if that wasn’t an option; I’d blitz the flat, sort the garden – all of the things on my to-do list that I’ve never had time for. I’ve had this idea in my head of living a perfect minimalist lifestyle, but it’s taken three or four years to even make a dent in sorting through all the stuff we’ve accumulated over the course of our lives. I get loads of satisfaction in sorting through and getting rid of clutter. I’m sure I’d find time to watch a bit of Netflix here and there, bury my face in all the books I’ve been meaning to read. Just to sit for days on end with a coffee and a good book – that’s the dream.

Thanks for reading – we understand it’s a difficult time for everyone right now, but taking the time to get to know our team means a lot to us. If you’re interested in some other leadership ramblings from our Joe, click here, or if you want to peruse our latest work, click here.