With the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies have shifted to a virtual work environment with staff working from home. And for some people, this is an entirely new experience. How do you stay motivated and accountable when you’re remote? How do you separate your work duties from your home duties? How do you continue to feel connected and part of a team when you’re working alone? Here are some of our top tips and best practices for working remotely.
Tip #1: Schedule Free Time
It’s easy to get stuck on back-to-back phone calls and virtual meetings when working from home. Be sure to schedule free time on your calendar, just like an appointment. This will give you downtime in between meetings to actually get work done.
Tip #2: Design Work/Life Balance
Have you noticed it’s 7:00 pm and you’ve been glued to your computer all day? Take breaks during the day to stretch, eat, walk around, etc. Proactive nightly planning for work and family time is key to balancing both.
Tip #3: Keep in Contact
With teams dispersed, a 15-minute round up via phone daily will help keep you engaged with your employees. It gives people a chance to ask questions and creates a sense of connection and accountability. Remember to also socialize beyond work tasks to re-establish remote rapport.
Tip #4: Video Etiquette is Key
Find a neutral and quiet place to sit when participating in video calls. Try to minimize distractions and be sure there’s nothing inappropriate in the background when you’re on camera. Video etiquette is critical so keep it as professional as possible!
Tip #5: Follow the 5-7 Minute Factor
Call into teleconference 5-7 minutes ahead of the start time. This will help overcome any latency issues and ensure meetings start (and end) on time.
Bonus Tip: Set a physical boundary for your workspace to disconnect and increase your self-care activities in a space separate from work. Sometimes you need to literally “walk away” to detach and reinvest in your mental health.