March 29, 2020

Alex West

West With What’s Next: Five Tips for Working from Home Like a Pro During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Working from Home

So, you’re working from home now?

It’s definitely not for everyone. However, now nearly every professional is finding themselves sitting in front of their laptop and on their couch instead of in front of a monitor at the office. COVID-19 has forced companies everywhere to reimagine what it means to create a workplace.

While not everyone loves the change, many businesses were already heading toward a “work from home” model. Remote working has been growing in popularity across many industries. Our team at #Strella is a remote workforce, which allows us flexibility in how we work together and with clients. Virtual office services are also an excellent choice if you need to hide your personal home postal address when you work from home.

As you live and work through the coronavirus crisis, here are a few work-from-home tips inspired by my own remote work experience:

1. Keep a list of what you need to get done on any given day.

For us at #Strella, that means using Trello, a handy tool that allows tasks to be assigned to team members and tracked on a user-friendly dashboard. Trello provides a way to stay organized and on track with everything on your to-do list.

2. Choose face-to-face over audio-only conference call options.

You can stay true to your social distancing efforts and feel more connected with your team and clients with Zoom and Skype calls. These video conferencing apps come with features like screen sharing and hand raising, which can help make your meetings productive and organized.

3. Communicate your availability.

Without a traditional office environment, it can be challenging to know if someone is busy or available. To make it easier for your co-workers, make it known when you’re free to help them with something. If your workplace uses an instant messaging app like Slack, set your availability to online, offline, or busy to reflect your current status. If you’re not using a collaboration app, check in with your teammates in the morning to let them know when you’ll be available and find out when it will be best for you to reach them.

Also, consider creating a company communication plan. That will help keep your entire team on the same page with how best to connect with and help each other.

4. Figure out what works for you.

There is no “one-size-fits-all” style for working from home. Some people thrive in silence, while others need to be streaming the latest Netflix series to give them some background noise. Figure out what works best for you and take advantage of your freedom to mix things up to keep it interesting.

5. Showcase your workday on social media!

Using social media to build community among your friends, co-workers, and clients is more important more now than ever before. Social media platforms are rolling out ways to help you accomplish that during the COVID-19 crisis. For example, Instagram has added a feature that allows users to tag their stay-home activities and to encourage others to do the same. One suggestion for using it is to add a “boomerang”—featuring your laptop, notebook, and anything else that represents how you’re working from home—to your Instagram story. Make sure the image is clear, vibrant, and reflects your unique personal style.

We’re in This Together

The uncertainty of what COVID-19 will bring has created a scary time, for sure! Together, though, we’ll get through it, and, hopefully soon, resume business as usual. In the meantime, experiment with technology and take advantage of the opportunities it provides to keep you connected and productive.

Your turn! What technology tools and resources are you using to communicate and collaborate during the coronavirus outbreak?

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