It’s a new era. COVID-19 has millions of people now working from home – many of whom who have never done so. Think it’s a no brainer, right? Set up your computer and you’re good to go. Well, not so fast. There are a lot of considerations and best practices that can help your transition from the office to home a smooth, productive one.
- Ideally, having a separate, dedicated space in which to work, is best. It can be difficult to be productive and concentrate if you’re working from the kitchen table. If you don’t have a separate office, finding a quiet corner is the next best thing.
- Make sure you have the appropriate security protocols in place. Follow all rules and best practices for safeguarding and securing files.
- Consider in investing in noise-cancelling headphones. If there are others in the house, you won’t be distracted by any noise.
- Organize your work space so when you begin your day, you have everything at your fingertips.
- Be mindful of your environment. If you will be using video conferencing, be aware of what aesthetics will be seen by others.
- Just because you’re not physically going to the office doesn’t mean you should stay in your pajamas. Having a routine – shower and dress – puts you in the right frame of mind for beginning your work day. While you can get away with being barefoot, dressing up shapes your mindset.
- Let your family know you’re working – and not available to do household chores, Establish ground rules with everyone in the household.
- Don’t answer the front door or the house phone.
Don’t Forget to Move Around
We’re all told it’s necessary to move around periodically. Working from home is no different. Don’t forget to stand up and stretch periodically or take a few minutes to walk outside and get some fresh air. Move your position in your chair. Evidence supports the belief that stretching and moving promote productivity.
Communicate with Colleagues
Don’t forget to reach out to colleagues. Staying connected by email, phone and video can make the transition easier for all and keep you connected as a team.
It’s just as important to establish boundaries that end your day as it is when you’re starting it. When you’re done for the day, it’s important to disconnect. One of the biggest challenges when working from home is feeling like you’re always available. Stay true to your work hours. That’s not to say you can’t work late to make a deadline, or finish something you’re in the middle of, but when you’ve done, turn-off, tune out and walk away.