Are you ready to work from home and be productive?

During these days thousands of international companies have decided to roll out smart working giving the chance to their employs to stay at home.

Google, Microsoft, Twitter. Hitachi, Apple, Amazon. Chevron, Salesforce, Spotify. From the UK to the US, Japan to South Korea, Italy to France, these are all global companies that have, in the last few days, rolled out mandatory work-from-home policies amid the spread of Covid-19.

And it’s realistic to assume that shifting to the ‘home office’ will become the new normal for many of us for a while.
Some employees will be working from home for the first time, which means figuring out how to stay on task in a new environment that may not lend itself to productivity. But there are ways to deliver results and avoid going stir-crazy, from setting up a good workspace to the way you talk to your team.

Crank up the communication

Coronavirus or not, the key to working from home is clear communication with your boss, with your team, with your accountability buddy – and knowing exactly what’s expected of you.

Most people spend their days in close proximity to their boss, meaning communication is easy and effortless. But that’s all out the window with remote work, and communication breakdown is even more likely if your workplace isn’t used to remote working. Your manager might not be used to managing people virtually, for example, or your company might not have a ready-to-go suite of tools for remote workers, like the chat app Slack or video conferencing app Zoom.

But even for those accustomed to it, working from home can feel unstructured and isolating.
So when you communicate with your boss and team from home, it helps if as much of it as possible can be “richer” communication that’s face-to-face and instant video calls.

Treat it like a real job

Instead of lying in bed with a laptop, try something more deliberate. The fix could be something as simple as moving a nightstand into a corner far away from distractions, plopping down your computer and sitting in an upright chair, like you would at your office desk. 
With a dedicated workspace where you can concentrate, it becomes easier to unlock the benefits of remote work.

New activities for our brain and our mind

Do you think staying too much at home can be a source of stress or boredom?
But let me tell you a secret:
When everyday life breaks, we feel like fish out of water: we don’t know what to do and how to organize our days.
These are the moments in which we must take the situation in hand and react.
Here are some examples of activities you can do these days.

Organize meetings with your team and brain storm for new business ideas or new solutions to existing problems.
Do at least 30 minutes a day for workouts.

Get closer to some new hobbies to do at home, such as DIY, cooking or drawing. It is scientifically proven that in stressful situations doing manual activities are a good relief for our brain.

Keep spirits up

Make no mistake, these are stressful times. Negative headlines, worrying about sick or elderly loved ones and fighting the urge to go panic buying can all put answering work emails on the back burner. But the more effort you put into communicating with colleagues, the better chance you have of avoiding feelings of isolation, which can lead to depression.

Try to focus on the present and don’t think about how long this lock-in period will last.
Try to privilege video communications, both with your colleagues, with your boss and with your family and friends. This will help you keep your spirit and positive thoughts high, and it will also be a way to free your mind from worries that are sources of stress and anxiety.

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Complementary resources

Setting up a good workspace