Due to Covid-19, social and physical distancing is likely the ‘new normal’ for the foreseeable future. Certain work arrangements such as working from home (WFH) or remote working, might persist even beyond the current RMCO.
Remote working is done when you work outside of a traditional office setting. The difference between working from home as a result of social distancing and working remotely in a prepared environment are two different scenarios. Remote working as a permanent option means that your home office space is fully equipped and has the technology to adequately produce consistent results with little to no interruptions.
Working from home during the pandemic presents an entirely unique set of challenges while many employees juggle family responsibilities, lack of training, and spotty technology that wasn’t optimised for home office use in the first place.
The last couple of months have offered valuable insight into the advantages and disadvantages of working from home. One of the biggest advantages is of course better health outcomes.
Working within the walls of your home limits exposure to illnesses, which goes beyond the coronavirus and can be applied to things like the seasonal flu or stomach bugs. It also allows for the care of dependents and saves money for both employees and employers. Transportation costs and overhead expenses are significantly reduced.
Remote working has its disadvantages as well. First and foremost, the lines that separate home life from office life can quickly become blurred. If workers are not self-motivated, it can be easy to fall behind. Additionally, working remotely can prove difficult for some employees who lack familiarity with technology and overcoming technological setbacks.
Make the most of remote working and increase productivity with a few simple tips.
Just as if you were preparing to go into the office, establish a daily routine. Shower, eat breakfast, and change into a fresh pair of clothes. It makes you feel better, improves your mood, and gets your mind and body ready for the day ahead.
Success comes from preparation. Make sure you have all of the tools necessary to complete your job.
Working from home can be good for your physical health but it can wreak havoc on your mental health if you aren’t careful. It’s important for you to get outside of your house and socialise with others (socially distanced for the time being, of course).
Give yourself a break from the walls of your house and unwind with others or simply take a walk in a local park.
Your leadership role is evolving but here’s how you can adapt to the new ways of workforce management.
As a leader, it may be tempting to micromanage employees who are working remotely but you have to loosen the reins a bit. You can’t be there to monitor how they spend their time so focus on the end result instead. If they deliver a quality product or meet demands on time, the rest doesn’t matter.
Communication is critical when your team is working from home. Go beyond email and use virtual meetings when possible. Try to check in with your team daily to keep people in the loop on necessary information, and also just to keep the sense of camaraderie flowing.
As a leader, you should never ask your employees to do something that you aren’t willing to do yourself. Demonstrate exactly what you expect of your employees by the way you perform your remote work.
Remote working during the pandemic is helping workers around the world have better physical health outcomes in addition to mental health outcomes. This is a stressful time for everyone, so having the ability to stay within the comfort of home and take breaks as needed is doing wonders for employees mentally and physically.
As for employers, your understanding, empathy, and support go a long way to helping employees overcome this stressful time. Don’t underestimate the power you have to improve the quality of life for yourself and your employees.
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