How to Rock Remote Work
Because we value collaboration, open communication and approachability, we prefer to have our talents in the office when they’re working. We’ve always felt that it makes it easier to build trust, work well together and create a sense of unity. However, we’re allowed to occasionally work from home for a day or two if necessary and since we also have self-determined working hours, we have a lot of freedom to manage our own time.
Due to the current situation with COVID-19, we’ve had to make a mindshift (and physical shift) to do our part in flattening the curve and safeguarding our talents and global community. We’ve shifted our operations to a completely remote set-up and we’re now learning how to collaborate efficiently, stay productive and still drive our strategic initiatives remotely. Based on our experience so far, as well as tips gathered from talents, we’ve compiled our recommendations for working from home!
Home Office Setup
- Separate your workspace from your living space as much as possible so that you have other spaces or areas to escape to for breaks and a change of scene.
- Try different things to create your ideal workspace: Maybe you work better with background noise, or the view of your neighbours is distracting you?
- Find an online guide to help you set up your workspace ergonomically to avoid hurting your back or shoulders.
- Add some plants to the mix! Besides the fact that you’ll literally have more oxygen in your workspace, it will also make your workspace more cheerful.
- Let people in your house know when you’ll be on a conference call to help avoid distraction.
- Ditch your pajamas – whether you have meetings or not, you’ll feel less lazy and more motivated if you look and feel presentable.
- Stick to a regular work schedule so that you’re able to switch off and relax during lunch as well as after work.
- Schedule regular 1:1s or coffee breaks with colleagues to check in with each other and take a mental break.
- Block a lunch hour in your calendar and try to step away from your computer: don’t eat at your desk!
- Make time for a slow start in the morning – ease into the day by going for a walk, cooking a proper breakfast or taking the time to make a proper cup of coffee with that coffee machine you bought and only used once.
- Share what you’re working on in regular team standups or Slack channels – don’t hesitate to share small achievements throughout the week.
- React to your team’s Slack messages, even if it’s just with an emoji – everyone wants to feel that they’re heard and acknowledged, and even more so during social isolation.
- Use your Slack status to indicate whether you’re available, having lunch, in a meeting, or shouldn’t be disturbed.
Collaboration & Teamwork
- Find the best video conferencing tool for you and your team – after some trials and testing we’ve decided on Zoom, which has been working well so far.
- Set up daily or weekly team meetings to ensure everyone is on the same page and on track to meet overall team goals.
- Use tools like Dropbox Paper for virtual brainstorms – it’s more secure than similar tools and very intuitive to use.
- Don’t hesitate to set up a quick call with someone instead of staying on Slack/email – you’ll probably end up saving a lot of time and effort this way!
- If it’s not something you’re already using, set up a team tasks board where you can be transparent about what you’re working on, what’s on your to-do list and what you’ve completed.
- Use tools like screen-recording to help share knowledge with your team in a more visual way than only writing how-to guides or notes.
Health & Wellbeing
- Hydrate! We don’t have to explain this one, but it’s easy to forget when you’re not following your usual office routine.
- Make sure to set up your home office desk as comfortably as possible – if your work offers you the chance to take home your current equipment, do it! Spending your days hunched over your laptop, on an uncomfortable chair, staring at a tiny screen is not going to help you or your productivity.
- Do daily exercises – whether it’s a walk (keep that 1.5 m radius around you) or using a bodyweight training app (Freeletics, 8Fit).
- Try some desk stretches or exercises when you start to feel stiff or haven’t got up in a while.
- Download a meditation app like 7 minds to help you switch off and recentre.
- Why not host or join a remote sports class? Some of our talents are hosting yoga, core fitness and boot camp classes online to help us stay in shape in this time!
- Make time in your day or week to run errands or do house chores during a fixed time slot to avoid randomly jumping up and getting distracted. (The dusty shelf in the corner can wait!)
- Dedicate enough time for breaks to disconnect a bit from technology and unwind your mind (Read, build a puzzle, write down about your day, meditate or draw).
- Don’t work more than you would in the office. It’s easy to get carried away if you’re very focused on a specific task and you don’t have to worry about getting home by a specific time.
- Setup virtual coffee dates with friends or family to NOT talk about work or the current crisis.
We’re currently working on a few initiatives to help our talents stay productive as well as engaged during this time, from daily flow lab sessions to remote workouts and virtual social meetups. We’ll be sharing more tips and tricks with you as we go along, so keep an eye out for our upcoming content!