With COVID-19 becoming more prevalent, there’s cause to believe that working from home will become the norm for many, and the adjustment might not be as easy as one would think.
Global companies from Google to Microsoft, from Salesforce to Apple, have all began to implement a mandatory work-from-home policy as the spread of COVID-19 has reached a ‘pandemic’ state.
Figuring out how to stay on target and hit daily tasks while in a different environment is a difficult adjustment, but there are a number of ways to hit the ground running and to tackle the future work-from-home days ahead, from setting up your work space to preparing how you will communicate, we’ve put together some tips to help you settle in to the new norm.
Keep communication open
It might be more tempting to slack off more at home than you would in a workplace, after all your home is your ultimate sense of comfort after work, so why shouldn’t it be your sense of comfort during work too? This is especially the case due to the fact that your boss or team leader won’t be in your immediate vicinity.
Therefore, a great way to maintain productivity is to keep communication channels open with your boss or team leader and fleshing out exactly what’s expected of you during your time at home. This can be done through email, text or video from apps like Skype or Zoom.
Even a quick 10-minute call to start the day and get your tasks rolling and another call to wrap the day up to report how you went will do wonders for your work productivity.
Behave like it’s any other workday
As mentioned, with no boss or team around it can be easy to become lethargic. You might be quick to put the TV on in the background, sit back in your PJ’s and achieve enough work so you won’t raise alarms from your boss, but it won’t translate to a productive workday.
Instead, treat your day as if you were coming into the office. Instead of sitting in your pajamas, have a shower and get dressed as you would for work, with the right mindset to tackle the day. Plan out when you will take your breaks, when you will speak to team members and more just like any other workday.
Furthermore, an adjustment on your home work space will keep productivity levels high, as you’re more likely to concentrate on work if you’re in the right work space, rather than lying in bed with a laptop. This can be as easy as setting up your computer on a desk, with an upright chair and moving away from any possible distractions.
Lastly, establishing your work space will also serve as a signal to anybody else at your home that you are currently working, creating boundaries that hopefully everybody else in the home will understand and respect, leaving you to work in peace.
Remain positive and avoid total isolation
While there are many tips and tricks for adjusting to working from home, there are still plenty of struggles to get accustomed to. For instance, you could be going from an office full of the voices of your colleagues and friends to a home of silence. It might sound like a dream come true but it comes with its difficulties and it does get lonely after a while.
Understandably, this could cause an impact on morale, productivity and of course mental well being. In a crazy time like this, it’s important to try and maintain a level of normalcy. In-office social activities like celebrating birthdays or celebrating a record month could potentially be done with virtual parties over the internet with video chat.
Ensure you make time for casual conversation with your friends and colleagues, instead of constant “work jargon” and all work-related talk.
To finalise, adjusting from working in an office to working at home can be difficult, but not impossible.
By ensuring you keep communication channels open with your boss or team, setting up an open work space void of distractions and maintaining a healthy level of positivity with casual conversation, you should be able to tackle the issue head on and balance the shift that comes with working from home.