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I go to the Mabel’s Labels HQ about two and half days a week and work from home the rest of the time. I like going to the office for the obvious reasons – it’s quiet, no one interrupts me to say they want a snack, and I get to dress up a bit (OK, admittedly “dressing up” is only about a half step up from my mama uniform).

There’s something else about the office that I like that’s tricky to describe – a certain dynamic that makes ours not your average office.

One thing is that our staff is just plain fun – a real mix of humour, passion, intelligence and quirkiness. All this while also being completely professional and skillful. It’s a tall order, but we seem to have pulled it off. I’ve always had a hard time exactly pinpointing what it was about our office dynamic that made going to work so enjoyable. I never knew how to define it until Elia came along.

Elia recently completed a co-op placement with our Production Department. She was diligent and made countless contributions during her time at Mabel’s Labels. Elia also has autism. One of the skills we appreciated most was Elia’s ability to spin a regular occurrence into something memorable.

There was one situation that we all got a kick out of – whenever Elia was placed alongside a certain male student to work; she got a little twinkle in her eye and spring in her step. She would giggle and joke with him as they worked together. Then one day she said about this student what I have not been able to summarize about our work environment. She said “Oh Alex, you’re contagious!”

Contagious! That was the word that best describes our staff team – we hire people who are contagious. To celebrate Elia’s completion of her term with us, we had an office ice-cream party. Even though Elia is back at school and done here at Mabel’s Labels, her contagious personality will not be forgotten anytime soon.

Elia with one of the Mabel babies

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