The unprecedented pandemic has undoubtedly presented everyone with a wide variety of challenges, and, for many, adjusting to working remotely is no exception.
In addition to juggling work at home, keeping your barking dog quiet during zoom meetings, and managing your children’s virtual learning, you are charged with the task of reassuring your boss that you’ve got this under control. Don’t despair—we have five solid tips for you that will help give your employer confidence in your ability to work from home successfully!
With little to no face time among colleagues, consistent and effective communication are paramount. Tone and context can be challenging to interpret virtually. Layer in context and over-communicate! Ask your employer about his/her expectations of you, and be vocal about meeting those expectations.
Check in with your colleagues frequently, and be quick to offer more information when requested.
Make Your Presence Known
Be an active participant in video conferences and group chats! Speak up in meetings, meet your deadlines on time, and answer emails in a timely manner. Speak to your employer about your success and/or your team’s accomplishments, but be careful not to boast. Increasing your visibility in your new remote role will reassure your employer that you haven’t missed a beat.
Interact with Colleagues
While the lack of daily social interaction can make maintaining relationships with your colleagues difficult, you can still put forth effort to interact with your fellow coworkers and to nurture existing relationships. Make phone calls to check in on others, videoconference when possible, and stay connected. Consider a virtual happy hour, trivia game, or coffee hangout. Your ability to remain bonded with your teammates despite the current circumstances and associated challenges will ensure your boss views you as a proactive and committed team player.
Maintain a Productive Workspace
Your employer may not be surveying your new workspace, but he/she will certainly notice your work output and productivity. Your surrounding environment largely determines your ability to focus and remain productive, so make the most of it! Designate a specific area in your home that is clean, quiet, and as free of distraction as possible. Utilize natural light, and ensure that your workspace is comfortable.
Make sure you have all the necessary equipment, and keep your space looking professional for zoom calls and video conferencing.
William James, an influential American philosopher, once said, “It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than anything else, will affect its successful outcome.”
How encouraging to be reminded that, though so much is out of our control right now, we DO have power over our attitudes. Working from home successfully amidst the challenges of these trying times requires a positive attitude. Consciously strive to remain positive, and let your emails and videoconferencing presence reflect your optimism. Give yourself and others grace as you all learn to navigate “the new normal.” Your positive mindset and adaptability will be noticed and appreciated by your colleagues and employer.