What a vast span of time and space between our team as we worked diligently behind screens, seeing each other only in virtual meetings with carefully selected backgrounds.
We strategized, collaborated, and met goals together. We chartered through unknown territory, changing our working model during a global pandemic together. We suffered the loss of dear colleagues together. We did all of this and so much more together, yet we were so far apart. Our team works across the country, and it was finally time after two years apart to come together under one roof.
Our annual manager’s meeting is where leadership within LERETA shares ideas and projects, engineers solutions and analyzes problems and solutions. We had planned this meeting three times and canceled twice because of concerns surrounding COVID and our priority for health and safety. But finally, our group of 60+ flocked to the shores of La Jolla this past April. You could hear the palpable excitement as people clamored together. Old friends reunited and people who had worked together for over a year and never met finally met.
The meals and wine were only outdone by the brilliance of the company and conversation, from intimate gatherings at a quaint Italian restaurant to booming laughter that echoed through oceanfront seating—all of the discussions attempting to cover all that had been missed in the past years apart.
There were sobering moments when we remembered the coworkers we had lost. We had the profound honor of having their families join us as we celebrated their lives and the impact they had on others and their contributions to LERETA. We woke up with the sun and walked on the gorgeous beach outside our hotel. To be able to casually stroll, chat, or be lost in our thoughts in such large numbers was not a privilege that was lost on us.
We worked, brainstormed, strategized, and looked to the future of LERETA. And the best part; we were finally able to do this TOGETHER.