For the first time in history, more employees are working from home than ever before, thanks to the Coronavirus outbreak. While social isolation is fraying nerves and contributing to a lot of pent-up stress, there are ways to mitigate the consequences. It all starts with approaching your office design layout the right way! Take advantage of the following tips to make sure you’re ready to wait out the rest of this storm, without losing your work ethic, drive and motivation.
#1) Add Green To Your Space
If having plants around your workplace environment is enough to boost employee morale and well-being, then that goes double (perhaps triple!) during the Coronavirus lockdown. If you already have plants in your house, consider adjusting a few around and add some to your office space, whether that’s the couch or a dedicated room. If you can get your hands on some plants at your local hardware store, do so! A little green can go a long way to maximizing your health and optimism. Biophilic design is one of the key core ingredients of the modern office, and implementing it at home can aid the benefits already present from working in an environment you know and cherish. Also, don’t forget to get out of the office every so often, as well. Take a walk outside (while staying away from other people), and experience green the way nature intended! You can convert your lunch break from sitting in front of the TV and watching the dreary news, to getting some great exercise and fresh air!
#2) Be Ready For Remote Meetings
The modern smartphone and home computer have done wonders for modernizing the way we communicate. Remote workers already know the benefits of being able to text, call and video conference with teammates and clients. Now, everyone else has the opportunity to get on board, but make sure you’re prepared. Having a webcam is a great first step if video calls are a must, but make sure you’re not sitting in front of any open windows or heavy light sources, or you may get lost in the glare. Similarly, make sure the microphone on your computer is properly set up and attuned for proper delivery without any nasty feedback. And finally, be ready to conference and collaborate with each other via remote desktop software, project management apps and Email. Once you get into the swing of things, you’ll find it’s a piece of cake.
#3) Move Around
Just like a workplace environment, it’s not recommended that you sit around in the same spot all day long. If you’re working on a laptop, pick it up and sit on the couch, go onto the patio, or even hang out in bed while you do your thing. Not only does this banish mental fatigue, but it also gets your body out of its static position, encouraging movement. A change of scenery is one of the best parts of an open concept workspace, so take what you’ve learned from the office and apply the same habits at home. Mind where you go, however. That comfy bed might be great to stretch out on, but falling asleep on the job is still a major no-no!
#4) Check In On Your Teammates Regularly
Going it solo at home isn’t for everyone. In fact, there are many employees who go absolutely crazy working remotely, and prefer the bustle and interaction with other workers in the office. Regardless of your stance, it’s important not to isolate yourself from your co-workers. Take the opportunity (work permitting) to send a few friendly Emails, texts or calls to your fellow employees and let them know you miss them. Discuss that night out on the town you’re all going to have when the virus has passed, and how much fun it’ll be to get back together under one roof. Many are suffering from depression and anxiety during this time, and when stuck at home with nobody to talk to, this can have a significant impact on your productivity and health. Remember, we’re all in this together. That includes your Boss, who is probably dealing with a lot more stress than you are, so pay your kindness forward.
#5) Invest In The Right Furniture
Make absolutely certain that your home office is ready for the task at hand. This means working with a sturdy, comfortable chair that will support and cushion you throughout the day. It also means having the right surface space to work on. This could be anything from your dining room table to your home office desk, but be certain you’re set up to work efficiently at all times. Having sole control over your thermostat means you’ll never have to worry about co-workers complaining whether it’s too hot or cold, so take advantage to optimize your comfort level for your work day. And finally, make sure to get some rest! It’s all too tempting to stay up late under the premise that you can avoid the morning commute, but lack of adequate sleep will have a drastic effect on your entire work day. Bend your routine a little, but don’t break it!
Following these tips can help you work in your home office environment and wait out the storm, while remaining positive, energetic and proficient at your job. The crisis will end, at which point we can go back to normal, but in the meantime you’ll have to deal with a major change in your daily environment. Be sure to make the most of it, and we’ll all get through this crisis a lot easier!
For more information on how Sensyst can work with you to develop the perfect home office layout, please contact us today!