Capgemini graduate Tanaka shares key lessons from 2020

Capgemini graduate Tanaka shares key lessons from 2020

 April 12, 2021

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Tanaka Nyamande joined Capgemini Invent in August 2020 as part of the first virtual graduate intake of the Accelerate Programme. She works for the AI Services practice within Insights Driven Entreprise. She is interested in operational analytics particularly in supply chain optimisation.

"As we hit the year mark since the UK government first went into a national lockdown, the world as we know it has changed in so many ways. 2020 for many of us was a year of change – adapting to uncertainty, innovating in our work practices, and evolving in our ways of thinking. With so much rapid change still going on around us, I took a moment to be still and reflect; in that I’ve learnt 3 lessons I’d like to share," says Tanaka.

There’s no place like home

In 2020 Tanaka gained a greater sense of appreciation for family. "Let me be honest, being bundled up with them indoors for months on end was not an ideal situation and I won’t pretend it was," she says. However, having the comfort of family during what felt like such a crazy time was reassuring for her.

As for friends and family she didn’t get to see much throughout the year, for Tanaka the adage that ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’ couldn’t be truer. "We often take for granted the time we spend with people knowing we’ll get many opportunities in the future to be with them, but I’ve learnt to make every single day special in any way I can," she says.

Learning how to work from home

This is an area Tanaka believes everyone is continually improving as they work remotely. "Given that I started my full-time career in a remote position, you might assume I couldn’t have struggled making any adjustments, because this way of working is all I’ve ever known," she says. "And I would forgive you for thinking that because the lifestyle change that accompanied working from home was a complete shock to me too." Navigating both her professional and personal life all in the space of her home, where the lines between work and life are so easily blurred, was what Tanaka describes as "quite the task".

Over time she has successfully managed to settle into a good routine and had the support of Capgemini for any issues she faced along the way. And she can’t say it’s been all bad. She has delighted in getting to know more her teammates as well as sharing more about herself, from the "art on my walls to (pesky!) family members in my video background".

Trying new things

Tanaka adds: "I’m not going to be one of ‘those’ people that claim to have gained over 20 skills over the lockdown, because that’s unrealistic (well for me anyways). However, because I had a lot more down time at home with frankly nothing better to do, I relished the opportunity and decided to try new things. An inexhaustive list of things I tried, in no particular order, include: South Asian cuisine, long distance walks, dress making, Tik-Tok, tabata workouts and so much more."

Tanaka congratulates anyone who has managed to develop a skill or multiple skills to a decent level in 2020. But, if you were brave enough to dare to try something different, even if you didn’t stick with it, she believes you deserve an equally commendatory congratulations.

She understands that trying new things isn’t easy for everyone, especially for those that lean towards perfectionism. In 2020 she gave herself the freedom to try activities that interest her without inhibition. From this experience she has gained a host of new hobbies along with "an open and fearless mindset".

"Now with a lockdown easing roadmap established, some semblance a pandemic-free world seems to be in our horizon," says Tanaka. "As I look forward to a world I can once again recognise as ‘normal’, these are a few of many learnings I’ve taken and will carry forward from the unforgettable year that was 2020."

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