During the last few weeks, one business-related question has become more pressing than ever: How can we work remotely longer-term? Building your working routine away from the office can be challenging. There are all kinds of difficulties you might face.
There are the technical issues (for example, an internet connection error can make it impossible to work on your daily tasks).
Then there are communication challenges - chatting might seem like a convenient way of communication at first, but then you start to jump on calls and you never get offline!
And of course, don’t underestimate how lonely working-from-home can be. Now more than ever, isolation can amplify even the tiniest negative feeling and make it impossible for you to manage your mood and spirit.
However, working remotely has undebatable benefits. It offers you the flexibility to structure your own daily routine, and minimize wasted hours of commuting. Disorienting times as these days are, you can always connect with colleagues, whether it’s for a chat about quantum physics or an exchange of sushi recipes.
Remember it takes time to structure your remote working routine efficiently and it requires a lot of trial and error to find what works and what doesn’t work for you.
Here at Lenses.io, we are a remote-first company (pre-COVID-19). We got a few of our most valuable team members to share their trade secrets for a productive remote working routine, including how they manage to balance their job, exercising and family life. So, go ahead and take a look at our tips for remote success and thank us later!
"Connecting with my work family on a daily basis even if it’s just to chit-chat is essential for me. When you work remotely, it’s quite easy to drift away, so making a conscious effort to reach out to people and connect really makes a difference. We have created a virtual office where people can log in and work simultaneously or even chat after lunch – it really keeps me connected. It is crucial now more than ever, being indoors 24/7, to break your activities down into small pieces and go through a “trial and error” mode, until we figure out which structure works for us individually. Then we can make it a habit. In these circumstances, it is also important to remember that everyone copes with this new situation differently and that we need to give ourselves time to adjust. This mindset really lifts unwanted and unrealistic expectations off my shoulders."
"The biggest challenge of working remotely is to balance your work, your family and your personal time. For me, doing a Crossfit workout first thing in the morning and involving my family in most of my free time activities achieves that balance, so I can be present with my family and productive in my work. The current crisis hasn’t changed my life that much. Thankfully, I have a garden so I can do most of my Crossfit workout outdoors and spend time with my family in nature. But there are also plenty of indoor activities you can take up as well. If you are a dad like me, you can play music for your little son or dance Jazz with your partner in your living room."
Working from home can be tricky for some people. That’s not the case for me, as I have my very own “work corner” with my desk and monitor next to the window. In that way, I always work from home, and never actually work at home. I also try to follow my office routine timetable, so when the clock strikes midday, it’s time to get up from my office and head to the kitchen for my lunch break. And that strict timetable is also helpful to balance being a first-time mother and a CPO. When you have a baby it’s more important than ever to reserve time for your family; so even if you have a busy day at work and you need to be “in the office” for more hours than usual, there’s always the getting-together "dinner time". And, thankfully I don’t exercise, so more time for my family and myself!
"Remote work needs discipline and effective over-communication so you can work independently without blockers during the day. Build a standard routine so you can separate work from breaks and personal life: Start and finish your work at the same time every day just like you were at the office. My self-control and ability to focus has been a challenging yet a significant skill to acquire. Nobody bothers me. I can close my door, play my favourite music and focus on what I am doing. If you like what you do, you really don’t need to be in the office to get the job done. However, my best-kept secret that has supported my remote working so far is the coffee from my coffee machine."