An introspection of my one year in ICRC-Weyer

Ger­mans are often stereo­typed as being reserved, but my expe­ri­ence thus far has been the oppo­site in the cap­i­tal city of Ger­many, the melt­ing pot of cul­tur­al diver­si­ty: Berlin. Amidst the uncer­tain­ty brought about by the COVID-19 pan­dem­ic, I accept­ed the chal­lenge to move out of my com­fort zone. I applied for a senior posi­tion in the Med­ical Writ­ing Team (MW) of ICRC Wey­er in July 2020 over LinkedIn, from India. I was imme­di­ate­ly con­tact­ed by the Lead of the MW Team and then start­ed my journey.

Although the pan­dem­ic had brought some chal­lenges to the hir­ing process, the Hir­ing Team was very sup­port­ive, car­ing and patient through­out the process. I con­se­quent­ly moved to Berlin exact­ly after 10 months. ICRC-Wey­er was very con­sid­er­ate of my request to help me find an apart­ment and signed me up for one by the time I was in Berlin. My col­leagues gave me a flo­ral wel­come and I was hap­py to find a love­ly wel­come mes­sage from our Man­ag­ing Direc­tor upon my arrival.

Since my Day 1 I felt that the adren­a­lin was quite high at ICRC-Wey­er. The teams worked on some promis­ing nov­el drugs and label-exten­sions for exist­ing drugs for our clients. I quick­ly real­ized how diverse my orga­ni­za­tion is. We have asso­ciates from dif­fer­ent nation­al­i­ties work­ing togeth­er in the same office, towards the same goals. I got an oppor­tu­ni­ty to put my ear­li­er expe­ri­ence to good use. I learnt some new doc­u­ment types too. All this while, my Team Lead had been a great men­tor and helped me get on to speed with under­stand­ing the require­ments of the sub­mis­sion teams. It was an extreme­ly busy year, but the learn­ing was intense. In order to con­tin­ue my learn­ing, I was also giv­en a chance to become a part of the Euro­pean Med­ical Writ­ers Asso­ci­a­tion (EMWA) and to be a part of some con­fer­ences as well. Thanks to the enthu­si­asm, sup­port, and encour­age­ment I received; I could also men­tor oth­er med­ical writ­ers in the team to take on the chal­leng­ing projects independently.

Lat­er that year, I decid­ed to get mar­ried. My col­leagues were equal­ly hap­py for me, and I was grant­ed the oppor­tu­ni­ty to enjoy all the moments of my wed­ding in my home coun­try along with my fam­i­ly. My ICRC-Wey­er fam­i­ly even par­tic­i­pat­ed in my wed­ding gra­cious­ly through the live stream­ing. I am so grate­ful that I was also per­mit­ted to work from home for a few days as I warmed up to respon­si­bil­i­ties as of being a wife in my home coun­try. And when the time came to inte­grate my hus­band in Ger­many, once again, the man­age­ment and Office Man­ag­er read­i­ly helped us with doc­u­men­ta­tion need­ed for the visa.

Today it is an hon­or to extend the same warm wel­come that I once received to the new med­ical writ­ers join­ing my team. Even when we are work­ing from home, we always make plans to meet up in the office over a piz­za. Kudos to ICRC-Wey­er for exem­pli­fy­ing pro­fes­sion­al­ism at work, warmth in inter-per­son­al rela­tions and con­tin­u­ous learn­ing sup­port to its employees.

Keerthi­ka Gogu­la, Senior Med­ical Writer