Working from home can be very hard for some people. The health crisis caused by COVID-19 has quickly become a larger financial crisis than the 2008 financial crash. You can expect to work from home for at least the next few months or even longer. A vaccine won’t be coming for a year.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced millions of people to work from home. For the first time, people had to figure out how to have meetings over the internet and how to log into their servers from home.
Building a work office at your home is hard for most people. This is because many people struggle to separate work and their family life when both happen under the same roof. Suddenly the lines between going to work and coming home blur together.
Tips For Working From Home
People have been forced to adjust to my lifestyle, even though they didn’t want to. Large conferences and events have been forced to take place over Zoom or Skype. The lawyers on our referral service have also been providing consultations with clients over video conferencing for years.
I have been working from home for the last eight years, so I’ve found the last few weeks very interesting. I want to share some tips to make it easier for those working from home for the first time.
Keep your original morning routine during the virus outbreak
Do what you did before the virus outbreak. Don’t act the way you do on weekends. You are still getting up to go to the office, it’s just an office that’s at your home.
Still get up in the morning, go for a run, make breakfast, and drink your coffee. Instead of going to your car to drive, you just walk to your table and open your laptop.
Wake up more than five minutes before your workday starts. You need time to prepare for the day, both mentally and emotionally.
Working From Home
Speak to your children and let them know you do not have to time off. Most children are now at home since they don’t have to go to school. However, you still must work, and they cannot enter your office no matter what. You don’t want them to enter your office while you are in a video conference with a customer or your boss.
Also, speak to your spouse, and let them know you are not available for any household chores. Especially, when you are in your office, the others in your household should pretend you are not there.
During video conferences last week, I saw many people’s kids and dogs enter the meeting. It was funny and cute at first. However, after the third time it happened, I started to get annoyed. Every time it would disrupt the flow of the meeting and it started to seem unprofessional.
Find ways to create a new daily structure | Working From Home
You will find you have a lot more time in the day. Many people waste two hours in their day commuting to and from work. Also, there is no water cooler or coffee machine at home where you would talk to your co-workers.
Many offices also have open-door policies, which means that you are constantly getting distracted from your daily tasks to assist others with theirs.
This means that your days will feel longer, and you will likely get a lot more work done. If you are the type of person that enjoys reacting to those that set tasks for you, you will find remote working hard. If you are the type of person that enjoys settling your own tasks, you will love remote working.
Communication always suffers when people work from home, no matter how much effort you put into it. Nothing can replace face-to-face time.
Turn off notifications during your lunch break and after work
You need to set boundaries. Once you finish a certain task, you should go for a walk (if you can keep 2 meters away from others) or call someone to catch up. Otherwise, when you work from home, the day is never over. Everyone knows you are available at any time, and they will take advance of it. Don’t use this time to read about the virus.
If you want more tips for working from home, reach out to us.
Alistair Vigier is the CEO of Clearway Law, an online marketplace for legal services, that provides lawyer referrals and access to a database of legal information.