Tips and Tricks For Successfully Working From Home

Tips and Tricks For Successfully Working From Home

Although TLC has recently rolled out a requirement for staff who are nonessential for facilities to work from home, many of TLC’s employees already telecommuted.  TLC’s staff as a whole are not the only ones due to the COVID-19 Pandemic to adjust to telecommuting full time. Many of TLC’s customers and their populations are also making the same adjustments.  

Here are tips and tricks from TLC’s full-time telecommuting staff to make this situation as productive and enjoyable as possible.

Have a dedicated space.  Having a desk with all the tools, supplies, and personal touches to make it feel like your “office” can go a long way.  Try to create a space that is separated from the distractions of daily life, if possible, such as a guest room away from the dishes and a place that signals to your family that when you are there, you are working. 

Create rituals around going to work.  It is easier to prevent burnout and be productive if you try to create more separation between your work and your personal lives. Set schedules for your work time and try to stick to those.  Get dressed in the morning. It doesn’t have to be fancy like you were going to a traditional office, but staying in your pajamas all day, although it sounds great, usually doesn’t help you feel accomplished. 

Isolation can be a wonderful work partner, especially if you do the type of work that requires you to work through difficult user flow. However, don’t work so long that your legs go numb and your back is permanently bent.  Just like working in an office, you want to schedule breaks and more interactive time with your colleagues.

When you find that you need to work with others, to think out loud and be questioned about the elements of your process, Slack is a great way to communicate both by text and by calling directly through the app.  Google Hangouts are an easy way to set up an impromptu meeting, especially if you need to see a human face or hear a human (adult) voice. 

Speaking of meetings, be aware of your surroundings.  If you are going to be on camera, make sure that the background isn’t overly distracting, or near a bright window, a lamp, or even a ceiling fan.  Check to see that you are centered on the screen and the audience is not seeing a screen of the wall with your head at the bottom. Establish boundaries – close the door if possible and educate other members of the home that you are ‘at work’; the education process may take some time for both you and your household. Be disciplined and think ‘you are at work’.

Justin Larsen Larsen