Can the mental health benefits of being close to nature and having a go-getting career be harmonious bedfellows?
YES! – in a word.
Lockdown’s proved that being based in a city, large town, or even within a stone’s throw of a major arterial route isn’t particularly conducive to getting the best mental health benefits from your working environment.
And as a rurally based PR agency surrounded by an abundance of countryside, rolling hills and fresh air, I’d like to think that we’ve been in the enlightened minority for the last 15 years. We bucked the trend way back, when most ambitious agencies of our ilk sought the talent pools of larger conurbations and the accessibility of built-up locations.
Not so at Pinstone. And I reckon the rest the country is finally catching up with our thinking, as the rural and remote location presents a newfound appeal as we emerge from the pandemic.
Our office HQ is in north Herefordshire, in the west of England, with one of the lowest population densities in England.
And there are boundless attractive features. With the opportunity to walk through meadows and fields, reach the summit of a local hill or hill fort, or take in the views that stretch for miles in every direction is never something we take for granted, and lockdown’s proved that more than ever.
Just to walk out the door, look up and see the gaping sky, hear bird song, witness trees and plants all around us emerging into flower does something for the soul.
Our team has had the privilege of being surrounded by nature over the course of the perilous year that was 2020. But that’s not to say it’s been easy on our mental health; just like the rest of the country there have been some challenges.
Many our team have only been part of a workplace environment for five years or less; they are new to their career and have missed out on some of the experiences offered from physically working alongside colleagues; the impromptu conversations, social chat and countless learning opportunities that come with a busy agency environment.
But the chance to escape into the great outdoors while home working, even for a short break, has been an enviable respite.
As I reflect on mental health during this week, and after such a tough year; our office that’s based in a rural location makes so much sense. Pair that with a supportive team culture, a focus on people welfare and shaking off the concept that all of the above needn’t be to the compromise of ambition and leading agency practices, it’s a recipe for success in the post-Covid era.
Pinstone is based in the market town of Leominster and specialises in PR and marketing services for organisations operating in the food and farming supply chain. We are an award-winning firm, rated 20th in the PR Week ‘Top 150’ in their B2B PR agency category of national firms in 2021.
We are proud to support local charity, Herefordshire Mind and leading agricultural charity, RABI.