Many people have been asked to work from home. Some of us are lucky enough to have worked from home in the past, but what if this is your first time? Keep reading for some tips to make these next few weeks as productive as possible.
With today’s climate, many of us have moved to work remotely instead of in an office setting. As someone who has in the past worked from home, I already had the tools to set up a home office quickly and get down to working with minimal disruptions. However, others never have had this experience.
Monitors — All the Monitors
Are you used to having more than a laptop screen while working? Perhaps invest in a second monitor, like this one from Acer, cheap and inexpensive! Similarly, there are portable monitors as well like this one.
Don’t want to spend the extra money? If you have an iPad or Android tablet, you can turn it into an extra monitor! I use my iPad as an extra monitor using the app Duet Display. You can connect your laptop using the same app wirelessly via WiFi connection. To connect wirelessly, you’ll have to pay a yearly subscription of 19.99, which is relatively inexpensive compared to buying a whole new monitor.
Here is my current setup:
Communication — No More Meetings! Not So Fast
I’m of the kind that doesn’t really enjoy meetings because it takes me away from actually doing work, and most often, meetings could be a quick email. However, working from home requires you to be even more communicative, or else productivity goes down.
From experience, virtual meetings are actually more productive since often you’re not working from home alone, there are usually family or pets in the background. Google Meet is a useful tool; however, it tends to have a lot of issues with audio. I suggest trying to switch to Zoom – they offer 40-minute webinar accounts for free, which allows you to record and send to others in case someone isn’t taking meeting notes.
Another tool that’s amazing for team communication when you can’t just have a video stream on? Slack! You can create dedicated channels where teams can chat about different verticals, social media, conferences, company information, and the water cooler (random room). It’s faster than email, searchable, and encourages teams to maintain conversation, especially with everyone practicing social distancing. Also, you can use gifs to express your feelings, and that’s always great ;).
Resources — All the Resources
Many people have recently put together how-to’s on working from home since the pandemic of COVID-19. The following are just a few that I’ve come across that you can check out as you learn to figure out how to work from home. Many think it’s a lonely way to work, I actually don’t as long as email, slack, video conferencing are available, but that’s just the introverted-extroverted in me.
- Pontoon – Make Remote Work Effective with Video
- NPR – How to Work From Home: Life Kit
- Bloomberg – Tips from Experts
- Slack – Go the distance: Slack tips for remote and distributed workers.
Are you working from home? Sound off in the comments! Help others out while we all figure out how to keep on being productive.