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Building Strong Bonds: Embracing Growth and Empowerment

Vinay Sai Daggubati

Since joining D2L, I’ve experienced a drastic change in my life—both personally and professionally through the support of my manager and colleagues. Through #LifeAtD2L, I have experienced first-hand the power of inclusive leadership, teamwork and work-life balance.

Like many others, I went through challenges growing up that left me feeling nervous and as though I was unable to express myself. However, at D2L I have found solace in a supportive work environment that has embraced my uniqueness and helped me to overcome my barriers. Now I feel safe, happy and like my work is sustainable. At the center of my story is my manager, Joe.

Phase 1: Confidence

Through the support of my colleagues and manager, I learned that it is okay to express myself. They always listened to me without pushing me away, which created a safe environment. It was the first time I felt like I was really being heard. With the coaching of a teammate, my confidence grew, and I stopped apologizing all the time.

At the same time, I noticed how nice people are here at D2L and how much they want to help each other. My team supports me to try new things, find solutions and collaborate with them for support when needed. It was a culture shock when I joined, to be honest. I have been able to get to know my coworkers as people. The bonds between us are so strong because the environment allows us to connect and engage.

Phase 2: Mistakes

I made a mistake and promised my manager it would never happen again. His response? “Mistakes will happen no matter how careful you are. We are humans.” This simple advice changed my mindset and gave me such a sense of peace and calm. The way my manager handles mistakes is admirable. He doesn’t focus on pointing blame or shaming anyone. Instead, he takes joint responsibility and brings the team together to find a solution and move things on peacefully. He makes us feel like we are all in this together and has created so much psychological safety on the team.

I have never worked in a company like D2L where employees are truly cared about. Joe has been there for me through a range of circumstances, both professional and personal. When I faced a family hurdle earlier this year, Joe was there to listen and offer support and advice. You don’t find many people like him these days.

Phase 3: Balance

Since transitioning to D2L, I have become calmer because I feel like I am handling one piece of pie rather than the entire thing. When my workday ends, I can log off and focus on my personal life because work is organized. When I faced health challenges, I also had the flexibility to work from home. I was also able to purchase my first car, which has reduced my commute time and helped me reclaim hours of my day.

D2L is a place to celebrate diversity, promote well-being and bring your full self to work. Since joining, I have achieved personal goals, embraced work-life balance and built meaningful relationships. My colleague and I even went on a hike together recently. Overall, I’m thankful for this harmony I have found, the connections I have made with my colleagues, and I will always be grateful for the growth I have accomplished through the support of my manager.

About the author:

Vinay is an IT Technician living in the Cambridge area. When he is not working, you can find him on a hike or at the beach.

Written by:

Vinay Sai Daggubati

Table of Contents

  1. Phase 1: Confidence
  2. Phase 2: Mistakes
  3. Phase 3: Balance