This guest blog was written by Vyvyan Gonzales, Employee Engagement Officer at Leaseweb, who has some tips for those who now find themselves working fully remote.
Like many companies, a large percentage of Leaseweb’s workforce is now working entirely remote. A large part of the Leaseweb culture is human interaction that celebrates the diverse backgrounds, nationalities, and life experiences of our employees – and now, with everything gone virtual, we are finding new ways to connect and ensure that every Leaseweb employee is staying healthy, happy, and productive.
Read on to see how to make the most of your time while working from home.
Distinguish Between Work Mode And Home Mode
One of the biggest perks about working from home is slowly moving from bed to sofa just five minutes before you start – but this can also be your biggest challenge. Don’t forget that you are there to work – so set yourself up the right way. Get dressed and brush your teeth at the start of the day, rather than sitting in your pajamas for 8 hours. Besides, just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean that no one from the office will see you. It’s 2020 and we’re all about to have a lot of video meetings!
Designate Working Hours And A Workspace
Try to create a physically separate workspace in your home. Your workspace doesn’t have to be its own room, but it should feel as separate from the rest of your home as possible. ‘Entering’ your workspace will help you turn “on” at the beginning of the day and get down to work, while leaving your workspace will help you turn “off” at the end of the day and fully disengage. And just as you designate and separate your physical workspace, you should be clear about the hours you are working and the hours you are off.
Have Realistic Achievements
A wide, open day working from home can feel full of possibilities – so don’t fall into the trap of being over-ambitious. Be realistic with your productivity. It helps to choose three to five things to do, and aim to finish the majority of them before lunch. As we all slow down in the mid-afternoon, having goals and a list to work off of gives you the momentum to power through the day.
Break Your Work Up
In the office, your day is broken up frequently – but when you are at home on your own with no face-to-face interactions, it can be easy to work for long and unbroken periods. In contrast, a day at home can be very unstructured. In order to be productive, try structuring your day. For example, working in 45-60-minute chunks of focused work followed by a short break can be an effective way to break the day up and maintain concentration levels.
They key to remote work is communication, especially with your manager and direct colleagues. Come up with a plan that lays out expectations for how often you should check in and how you’ll convey changes or new assignments to one another. At Leaseweb we have the advantage of working with endless online communications platforms – the versatile infrastructure, ease of use, and low costs help us to communicate with everyone, all the time.
When the whole Leaseweb office suddenly had to start working from home, a lot of the casual social interactions we were used to having throughout the day were suddenly gone. People forget they need to be around others, because it’s the small talk and random coffee breaks that keep your days feeling unique.
Overcome the monotony by making it a point to speak with your coworkers every day, multiple times a day. Ask about their weekend, reach out, give compliments, be nice – little things can go a long way! My HR department has an e-lunch set up every day for those who want to join and talk about something different other than work or COVID-19. It’s relaxing and gives a true feeling of connection during your break.
Eat smart: No need to follow a diet – the best strategy is to avoid processed foods. Complex carbohydrates, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains provide important nourishment for your brains as they slowly release energy and stabilize your mood.
Sleep well: Sleep is essential for our bodies to repair cells, clear toxins and process information. It affects our psychological well being, concentration and even our emotional intelligence.
Move around: Team sports may be off the agenda, but you can certainly still exercise on your own. Make sure to move for at least 30 minutes a day. Many fitness instructors, yoga, pilates, personal trainers and dance teachers are offering their classes online during the outbreak for free.
I personally love to do yoga at home. Here are some of my favorites for all yoga levels:
- Neck, Shoulders and Upper Back – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3-gKPNyrTA
- Yoga for Complete Beginners – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7AYKMP6rOE
- Yoga For Tension Relief – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aKsu112bzHE
- Yoga for Joy – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8uHMMmWMHQ
- Introduction to Yin Yoga – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8uHMMmWMHQ
Remember, these are just suggestions – in the end, the best WFH policy is truly what you know works best for you. The most important thing is that you are focused on staying staying safe, healthy, and productive during your time working fully remote.