The COVID-19 pandemic has easily been the strangest time in most, if not all, of our lives. It’s impacted the way that we do almost everything. How we conduct business and communicate with our jobs on a daily basis is definitely one of them. While WFH (aka work from home) or remote work has become more common for employees in recent years, according to a FlexJobs and Global Workplace Analytics report 4.7 million people (3.4% of the population) WFH full-time, it’s still a massive and often challenging change for most.
VuPulse is a 100% WFH company. Our team is spread out across the east coast, so COVID-19 has not changed our daily work routine like it has many. Some of you may have a dedicated space to make WFH productive and manageable, while others are trying to adjust on the fly. Regardless of how your WFH setup looks, here’s five key tips for making it work.
Dress like normal
Treat WFH as you would if you had to go into the office. That means shower, wear pants without an elastic band, and comb your hair. It’s super easy to roll out of bed and throw on your finest (or worst) athleisure wear, but take the time to look and feel your best — being ready for the day makes a big difference in your productivity. Plus your video calls won’t be as stressful for you.
Create a legit work space
Everyone’s quarantine situation looks different. Some are in their single family home with their office and others are crammed into their three-bedroom apartment with their two roommates. Either way, try to create a workstation that emulates your desk in the office. Find a table or surface that is a similar height to your office desk. If you use a standing desk, then maybe use your kitchen counter for a period of the day. Depending on your home, this may require a level of creativity; however take the time to get it right. This is the secret sauce of productivity when WFH!
Take a lunch break
It’s easy to get lost in work or throw your laundry in between calls when WFH, but don’t forget to eat. Step away from your workstation and find some proper time to make something delicious. One of the many perks of WFH is you can avoid eating crappy takeout, so find a healthy lunch alternative in your home.
Show your face during video calls
Sure, you may not like the lighting in your work space but tough it out. Physically seeing one another’s face as much as possible builds camaraderie and is a helpful way to feel connected from afar. Plus, it’s reassuring to see how everyone else is a bit chaotic adapting to this sudden change. (We can all say what we want but ‘misery loves company’ is still true.)
If it is safe to do so in your area, find time to step out of your home during the day. Whether or not you were an active person prior to COVID-19, breathing fresh air when WFH is crucial for the body and mind. If you’ve got the drive, find 45 minutes to go for a walk, run or workout. You’ll feel refreshed and be ready to crush a project.
WFH is not for everyone. Some people need their commute and to physically meet with their colleagues to feel their most productive and happy. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has forced us into making WFH work. Speaking as a team who has embraced and loved WFH for years, we can attest that these tips will minimally make your day and productivity better. And we suspect that once quarantine is lifted tht many of you will be speaking with your boss about WFH more frequently or permanently.