Hello Squaddies, welcome to post 2 / 5 of our Working During A Pandemic Series, inspired by Meghan’s collaboration with Smart Works. Smart Works is known for providing women with clothing for their interviews, but less known is the work they do behind the scenes, preparing women for interviews, brushing up their CV’s/Resume, and advising on the overall job searching process.
We’ve decided to create a collection of blog posts dedicated to helping you land and keep the job during this incredibly difficult time. We hope you find it useful, and let us know if you land a role!
The global spread of COVID-19 has meant that a significant number of us are either working from home or have had to shift part of our work and business activities online. Work-life and home-life have become connected as we try to make sense of the new ‘normal’.
For some, the change has been magnificent. Many have commented on the better work-life balance, increased productivity, and utter relief from having to deal with in-person office politics. Others have found it difficult to adapt, and feel that it has drained their energy, stifled productivity and they cannot wait to get back to the office. No one knows when the corona saga will end, but if you’re finding it difficult to focus, we’ve compiled some tips to help you stay productive and motivated.
Have a morning routine
One of the biggest changes with working from home has been the removal of a morning commute. While many people have welcomed this change (goodbye packed trains and expensive fares), others have found that it has left them with a lack of motivation to get up and get moving. You may feel tempted to stay in bed for longer, but this will only leave you feeling more lethargic.
Now that you have extra time in the morning, use it to meditate, start a journal, read a book, take a short walk around your block, and treat yourself to some fine filter coffee and enjoy a beautiful brew.
Whatever you do, don’t hit the snooze button and go back to bed. In addition, once you have had a shower, make sure to put on some casual work clothes and do not stay in your pajamas.
Don’t do work activities on your personal laptop
Hopefully, your employer has let you take your work laptop home, or provided you with one. If this is the case, make sure to only use your work laptop during work hours. This is for the protection of both your companies security and your personal privacy.
Make sure to take your breaks
Stick to your usual lunch and coffee breaks and make sure to get up and get away from your laptop during those periods. Staying at your work station all day will leave you feeling lethargic, so do some light stretches to reduce cramps. Clarify with your employer what your break policy will be, and consider putting on an ‘away’ notice if you use a group platform with your fellow workmates when you’re not at your desk.
Create a dedicated workspace
If possible, create a specific workspace where you sit down to work, or make it very clear where your working space is going to be during work hours so you do not get disturbed. This will help you to better separate your work life and home life. Once work is over, pack up your work station, shut your laptop, and don’t look at your e-mail the same way you would if you were in the office. Set ground rules with those in your home, whether it be your partner, roommates, or children, let them know when they need to give you space and not to disturb you while you work.
Ask for additional equipment if you need it
This is particularly important if you’re starting at a new job. If you need better internet, computer equipment, or anything else, don’t be afraid to ask for it and state that it will help your productivity and workflow. You may also ask for your office equipment to be sent home. Also, ask if your company will provide you with a VPN if you need to work from a network you don’t have control over. These include public wi-fi’s in libraries, cafes, and co-working spaces. This will protect your company data and private data.
While many companies are keen to get back to the office as soon as possible, for other organizations, working from home will become the new norm forever. You may encounter this type of work set-up throughout your career, so now is a good time to get used to it!