COVID-19 is forcing the world to hit the pause button. Trade shows are cancelled, schools are closed, and professional sports have stopped. Stay at home mandates have been placed in many cities to aid in social distancing. Companies are now requiring team members to work from home. “Sleek Fleet is a remote-based company, so working from home is our norm”, said Kira Meinzer, Sleek Fleet Chief People Officer. “Working from home definitely has advantages, but there are challenges too. To stay focused, and remain effective, you need to shift your habits and routines”.
To help, we’ve pulled together our top tips for those that are new to working from home during this unprecedented time.
Tip #1: Find a Dedicated Work Space
Ideally, an entire room should be set aside for work efforts. The room should include a desk, chair and computer. If that’s not possible, set up shop in the corner of a quiet room- like your bedroom.
Tip #2: Set House Rules (especially with kids home from school)
Make sure those sharing your living space know you are working. Develop and communicate guidelines that help you remain focused and undisturbed. If you have small children at home, use a visual system using colors to indicate if you’re busy and can’t talk, will be available shortly, or if you’re available. Put snacks in their lunch box that they can grab freely throughout the day instead of interrupting you with the dreaded “I’m hungry”. We’ve also found it helpful to develop an hourly agenda filled with fun activities to help keep kids busy.
Tip #3: Morning Huddle
Each morning get the team together for a quick 10 minute video conference call. Not only does the call subtly force people to get prepped and dressed for the day, but it’s a great way to stay connected (with smiling faces and story sharing).
Tip #4: Daily Commitment
Each morning, determine what your individual #1 priority is and then commit to get it down by the end of the day. We’ve found if you share your daily commitment, and the team holds you accountable, you’re more likely to get it done.
Tip #5: Schedule Breaks
Everyone needs a break, even when working from home. To clear your mind, we suggest walking away from your desk, or phone, for lunch and a quick 15 minute break in the morning and afternoon. According to Meinzer, “Make sure to set aside personal time during the day. Stand up and get active, set daily move goals. Make a commitment to reach out to a personal friend or family member daily to stay connected”.
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