Due to the pandemic, businesses were faced with new, unique challenges. Companies were forced to navigate uncharted waters and find new ways to work while making employee safety the number one priority. There are both positives and negatives to working from home that are individual to the employee. Some benefits of remote work include better work-life balance, no commute to the office freeing up more time to do other things, higher productivity, financial savings and an overall healthier lifestyle. Possible downsides to remote work include communication gaps, lack of social interaction, difficulty creating work-life boundaries, lack of motivation or management challenges.
To reap the benefits of working from home, its important to create a healthy routine that is empowering, uplifting and easy to stick with. Using the following tips, create a routine that is unique to your situation and role within the company. Get creative and be flexible as you make these changes and find what works best for you and your family.
1. Dedicated Workspace: When working in an office, the separation between work and home is physical. Re-create the same type of separation at home. Find a spot that can be solely dedicated to work. It may be an actual home office, the spare bedroom, or even a corner in your living room or basement. Whatever are you have to work with, make it your own inviting, comfortable space that you can walk away from at the end of the day.
2. Morning Routine: Get up and get dressed. This may seem small but its important. Rolling out of bed minutes before your shift starts and wearing pajamas all day will make you feel sluggish and unmotivated. Create a morning routine that is uplifting and inspiring so you’re ready to tackle the day. Example: Wake up, workout, shower, get dressed, eat breakfast and sign into work.
3. Set Work Hours: It’s important to keep clearly defined working hours. Working late into the evening after your shift is over will lead to burn out. Sticking to a schedule will allow you more time to recharge and start fresh each day.
4. Add Transitions: Before and after your work shift, create a transition that helps the brain switch gears between work-mode and home-mode. If you previously worked in an office, this transition was likely your commute. Hit the reset button by finding a small transition that works for you. Example: After work, go for a walk with your pet to decompress.
5. Communicate: For teams to work well together outside of the office, communication is key. Utilize your company’s methods of communication (slack, zoom, chat, etc) to communicate with your team, provide updates, get clarification on tasks or just to check in.
6. Socialize: Working from home means less casual social interactions that normally occur in an office. Engage with your coworkers often using the communication platforms provided. Connect with your social circle outside of work. When safe to do so, socialize with friends, family, and colleagues outside of the home.