With schools closing and offices shifting to online, businesses around the world are opening up a totally new way of working — while slowing the spread of the disease and “flattening the curve”.
Working from home has plenty of advantages (spending that hour communicating to work in bed is one) but can also be filled with productivity and well-being challenges.
MKR Media has been a remote-friendly company for almost 2 years, with full-time remote employees — so it’s fair to say we’ve learned a lot of lessons along the way. We want to share with you our 7 tips and tricks on how to shift to remote working.
What time do you usually go to work? How bout what time do you leave work? Set clear working hours. If it is 9-5, 10-6, 8-4 it doesn't matter as long as you treat that time period like true working hours.
Try to start work around the same time every day, schedule breaks and most importantly logoff at the end of the day. With devices that allow bosses and clients to reach us constantly, you can end up working 24/7.
PJs are great, so comfy and warm. They are perfect, but not for the workplace. When working from home it's tempting to roll out of bed and just start working in your PJs.
If you're dressed for sleep, it's going to be a lot harder for you to get your mind in the right place for a productive workday. Pretend you are not working remotely. Treat it like any other day at the office. Wake up, shower and get dressed for the day. You will be surprised by how much more productive you are when you are wearing real pants.
You don't have to have a dedicated office in your house, just a separate workspace away from your bed or couch. This will help you focus and get into work mode.
It should be an area that mentally prepares you for work, whether it's a separate room, a small desk in the corner of the living room, or simply a laptop at the end of the kitchen table.
Zoom is great for virtual meetings, it's also great for virtual happy hour with your coworkers. We need human contact, in one way or another. Why not make a Zoom Happy Hour with you and co-workers at 5 pm. Make a drink and video chat with each other and catchup. See how they are doing, and get tips from them on how they are dealing with remote work.
Zoom Happy Hour, not your thing? That is fine, it's a great idea to set up a slack channel that is dedicated to the fun stuff. Setup channels like recipes to try at home, new shows to watch, or happy thoughts channel. The main point here is if you are used to meeting up with coworkers after work or chatting over coffee in the morning then try to translate that to online.
Oops, that 5-minute break to watch the end of that 30 Rock episode turned into a 3-hour binge and now you're behind on your work for the day.
As tempting as it is to have The Office playing in the background as you work, having the TV on while your work from home can be very distracting. You are not as good at working with that background noise as you think. If you wouldn't do it at the office, don't do it at home when you're working.
Working from home can mean one thing, screens 24/7. Working on your laptop, to scrolling on your Instagram, to catching up with your favorite show. That is a lot of screens y'all.
Give your eyes a break. Think about scheduling some screen-time-free breaks (I know, we are Social Media Managers screens are our life) throughout the day. Again think about a normal office day, do you take coffee breaks through the day? Then schedule a coffee break at home, at lunchtime read a book or call a friend.
Remote work is definitely something new for the majority of the world, which can mean one thing. Miscommunication. Miscommunication happens every day in a "normal" work setting I can only imagine the amount of miscommunication happening across the world right now.
Don't be afraid to send that extra email, Slack, WhatsApp, team or whatever you and your office uses to communicate to clarify any miscommunication on your part. It is better to over-communicate than assume and mess something up.
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