With the outbreak of COVID-19 quickly spreading, many workplaces have made the decision to have employees work from home (DEL Communications included!).
Although there are benefits of working from home, it also comes with a lot of challenges. Since your personal space is now your work space, that comes with a lot of distractions, especially if are a multi-person household. For those who live alone, working from home can also feel isolating and lonely.
If you are in the same boat as a lot of us right now, here are some tips to keep in mind to be productive and maintain balance.
ESTABLISH A DEDICATED WORKSPACE
Sure, working from the couch seems like a good idea, but it’s important to separate your workspace from your personal space. Even if you don’t have a home office, there are many areas in your home that you can establish as your new business space.
Clear off your dining room table, your breakfast bar, anywhere that has a surface, and set up your work laptop, your calendar, a notebook and pens. It’s important that the lines don’t blur between your personal time and your work time. Since you’re going to be spending a lot more time at home, it’s important to establish a dedicated work spot so it doesn’t feel like you’re always working, even when you’re off the clock.
MAINTAIN A SCHEDULE
Since you don’t have to get up so early now it may be tempting to stay in bed a little longer than usual. It’s important to stick to your normal work hours and breaks to establish a routine and keep you focused. Also, make sure you’re still getting dressed in the morning. Sure, working in your pajamas sounds like a good idea at first, but getting dressed in regular clothing will be better for you mentally in the long run.
Like maintaining a dedicated workspace in your home, it’s very important to act as business as usual. That includes getting up at the same time, putting on clothing, and then working in your home office during your normal work hours. Since you’re working from home, you may also feel like you’re always “on”. It’s important to disconnect from business once “home time” hits otherwise you may feel burn out.
We are fortunate that we live in a time where we can stay connected 24-7. Just because your new coworker may have four legs, doesn’t mean that you have to isolate yourself from the outside world.
There are so many amazing programs aside from email that allows you to connect with your coworkers. Our editorial team here at DEL uses Slack, which is basically like a chat room for businesses. Slack allows you to have workspaces so you can organize channels for group discussions and private messages with your coworkers. It also allows you to share information, files, and more in one place.
We also use Google Drive here at DEL to upload files and share them effortlessly, no matter how large they are, and Hightail to send large files to our layout department.
And don’t forget iMessage. Just as it’s important to keep connected to our coworkers, it’s equally important to maintain connection with friends and family. Send a loved one a text to see how they are doing or FaceTime with friends (on your lunch hour or break, of course). Maintaining these social connections is more important than ever for your mental health, even if that means it’s through technology.
For more tips on working from home, check out the video below, or send us a note, we would be happy to hear from you!