October 15, 2021

A Chat With Intouch “Boomerang,” Sarah Gaddy

My Second First Day

At a time when resignations are soaring and employer empathy is more important than ever, Intouch stands out as a company that truly cares about its people … it’s a place that inspires people to stay. This isn’t new for Intouch, but given the uncertainties and pressures of living in such unusual times, working somewhere that makes you feel valued is a pretty big deal. Across the Intouch Group network, employee health, happiness, and engagement really mean something. From our inclusion and diversity initiatives, a plethora of learning and development opportunities, and a flexible workplace policy, to the monthly tech stipend, weekly yoga and meditation classes, meeting-free zones, “Early Fridays,” and so much more, it’s no surprise that Intouch has long-haulers … but we also have what we call “boomerangs” — employees who leave and then come back. Right now, there are nearly two dozen Intouch boomerangs working across our offices, so we wanted to find out what made them come back after leaving. Check out our Q&A with group program director Sarah Gaddy.

What influenced you to leave? 
I’ll say there were two driving factors in my initial decision to leave Intouch: 1) In my younger years, naively, I wanted to work on the “sexier” things outside of healthcare and pharma advertising and get some CPG (consumer packaged goods) experience under my belt. And 2) I had been living and working in Chicago for nearly six years and was getting the itch to move back home to Atlanta to a bit of a slower lifestyle and be surrounded by family again.

Did you continue to work in this industry or try something entirely new?
I continued to work in the industry, making a couple of agency shifts and eventually making the move from Account to Project Management – first to Edelman, when Edelman was steering away from its tradition in PR and more toward a modern marketing model. Edelman allowed me the ability to start in the Chicago office and transfer to their Atlanta office to get back home. At Edelman, I still worked on healthcare clients, but also dipped my toes in the CPG, B2B, financial tech, and employee engagement spaces. After Edelman, I spent time at AKQA, a global product design shop, where I supported Delta Airlines during normal operating procedure times through the trying times of the pandemic.

Intouch always made me feel valued, respected, and heard – something that is hard to come by in agency life.

Intouch "boomerang" Sarah Gaddy holding paper showing her job role and "start dates"

How long were you away, and how many positions did you have before you boomeranged? 
About six years; three agencies / six positions.

What are two or three things that drew you back? 
Thinking about my two main reasons for leaving, coupled with living through the pandemic for almost a year at the time … 1) The further along in my career I got, the more I realized how strong and stable an industry healthcare / pharma truly is. While some agencies struggled during the pandemic, Intouch thrived and continue to grow more than ever – that’s saying something. And 2) I never thought I’d have the opportunity to work for Intouch again out of Atlanta, but the pandemic brought us more opportunities for remote work, and for that, I am grateful. Aside from all of that, I always looked back fondly at my time at Intouch and really only ever left out of circumstance. Intouch always made me feel valued, respected, and heard – something that is hard to come by in agency life. 

In your opinion, what differentiates Intouch? 
Hands down, Intouch culture. Intouch isn’t a company that just talks about culture because it’s a buzzword; it’s a company that provides its employees with so many opportunities for training, growth, workplace activities, and rewards. During my pandemic onboarding, I remember the deep gratitude I felt for a company who proactively added $50 onto one paycheck per month, recognizing folks were spending more money on at-home office expenses. From the Virtual Vibes events to the Meeting-Free Zone blocks, it’s the things that may not seem astronomical in nature that really add up and make you feel like a valued employee and not just a number.

If you’re interested in seeing what life at Intouch is like from an insider’s perspective, stay tuned for more in our boomerang series; and since you’re already here, learn more about working at Intouch via our Careers page.