In the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak, distancing ourselves from others can slow the spread of the virus and save lives. With that said, Payroc has joined other companies across the country in asking all of our employees to work from home until it is safe to return to our offices. For some, working from home is a regular occurrence. However, due to schools and daycares also practicing social distancing, many of our team members have the added responsibility of children in the house.
Even though it seems easy, working from home can feel overwhelming and become less productive compared to being in the office with your colleagues only a cubicle over.
No fear! Payroc’s Chief Strategy Officer, Adam Bloomston, who is a parent with kids at home, has some really great tips for us to use.
No Commute = More Time Outside
On the bright side, you don’t have to spend an hour in the car or on a train commuting to work in the morning. Use this time to knock out a chore. Or better yet, take a walk outside and get some fresh air. Remember to keep at least six feet away from others while outside for safety.
Shower Like You Mean It
Shower and get dressed in the morning like you would for a normal workday. This will help you feel refreshed and focused on the tasks at hand.
Set Office Hours
When will work begin? When does it end? This may be a little different for folks with various responsibilities such as kids or being a caretaker. Try your best to stick to this new schedule.
Create A Dedicated Work Space
There have been studies to prove working in your PJ’s while in bed can hurt your sleeping habits. Plus, you want to remove any temptation to crawl back into bed during the day!
“Do Not Disturb” Sign
Working from home while the kids are in the house isn’t going to be easy. To help them better understand, have a talk with them and even ask them to make you a “Do Not Disturb” sign for your door. That way, they have some hands-on activity with the lesson.
Headphones, Headphones, Headphones
Most don’t have the luxury of a quiet house to work in. Use headphones to help you focus. Headphones also allow you to be a low distraction to others who may be working or studying.
It’s okay to take breaks. While working in the office, we usually walk around, chat with co-workers, and attend many meetings. Try to follow the rule of working for 30 minutes straight, and then taking a break to walk around the house or stretch. This will help you focus all day!
Utilize Video/Slack Chats
Show your face as much as possible. Use FaceTime, Uber Conference and RingCentral to connect with your colleagues. Check-in with your managers regularly to make sure you’re on the same page. Create a new text or Slack channel to stay in touch with your office peeps.
To-Do and To-Don’t List
Create your to-do list and your to-don’t list. Take inventory of those things you’re not going to do during the day that will derail you from getting your work done.
Virtual Happy Hours
Are you used to catching up with colleges over a beer or glass of wine at the end of a busy workday? Set up Virtual Happy Hours so you are still connecting with your friends!
Lastly, Set Your Boundaries
Setting healthy boundaries is difficult! But the more you practice, the better you’ll get. Having calm conversations with others will aid the mission of keeping our loved ones safe during this pandemic.
This time is full of many adjustments, changes, and opportunities for boundary-setting. Even though this is an incredibly difficult time, we are fortunate to have each other here at Payroc. We do believe we will get through this and things will get back to normal eventually. For now, we will work and Roc-out from home!