For many of us, working from home has become and will continue to be the new normal throughout 2020. Possibly, even beyond this year. These plans are not meant to scare the workforce of today or tomorrow, but to keep team members feeling safe, confident, comfortable, healthy, and well.
More and more workplaces see offering their employees the ability to work from home as an empowering choice as regions slowly reopen. While some employees are raring to get back, others are hesitant.
Both outlooks are okay, so long as leadership safely executes the reopening process, preparing their teams with the right communications and implementing the best changes to keep everyone safe no matter their location.
It’s important for company leadership to not only be mindful of their region’s guidance on reopening offices but providing their employees the freedom of choice to slowly return as 2020 progresses.
While the health and wellbeing of your team members is a top priority, employers and individuals may still feel the struggle to keep up productivity while choosing to keep working from home. So, where’s the balance?
Image Courtesy of Salesforce, Improve Productivity While Working Remotely – Salesforce’s Advice
There are many ways to help team members keep up their personal productivity if they choose to keep working from home as your offices and region slowly reopens. One of them is to discover new ways to do old things.Salesforce provides great advice to workforces across the globe to ensure this happens.
First, employees should make use of collaboration tools to get work done.
Second, leadership should help their team members to digitally transform previous work routines, if applicable.
Some of our routines might have already been completely digital, for example. Especially for those of us in the technology sector. Today’s workforce has already made many moves in the recent past to be completely digital.
Still, we will all find places we need to adapt to along the way… no one is exempt from the law of constant change.
As 2020 has taught us, we must take everything one day at a time.
2020 is undoubtedly a year of uncertainty and incredible change. While some people feel 2020 has put them on pause, others feel they have more time than ever to be productive in their own habitats.
Emotions and productivity levels range across the board. It’s important to accommodate different personalities and comfort levels.
To help transform the way your team gets their work done at home, you can take several different steps.
First, take your meetings virtual. Since in-person gatherings, including regular meetings, have been postponed, it’s time to reimagine them. This phrase is being used a lot, and though it’s en route to becoming 2020’s biggest cliché, it still holds a lot of truth.
Clichés are clichés for a reason, right? We are in a constant state of reimagining, repurposing, revising, and reworking our everyday workflows in 2020.
Before you set up virtual meetings, if you are the meeting organizer, be sure to prepare your meeting agenda just as you would with an in-person meeting to keep everyone on task and ensure the purpose of your meeting is fulfilled.
Second, send an agenda for your attendees to read ahead of time. Include it in the meeting invite as to not overwhelm them with several emails, alerts, or reminders. Do what makes sense for your work culture. Maintain the same work ethics and expectations while working from home.
Last, before you send out the meeting invite, be cognizant of all of your team members’ time zones. This is especially relevant if you have a global or nationwide workforce.
Throughout the meeting, you will want to:
Establish roles for your team members – who will lead the conversation? Who will take notes? Who will be the delegator? Etc.
Ensure responsibilities are clear
Take notes – the designated note-taker for your meeting will be able to send a recap after the occurrence, but you can certainly make your own too. Something that you find valuable may be mentioned that the note-taker doesn’t end up sending later on.
Avoid distractions – ensure that everyone is ready to focus on the meeting. You wouldn’t pull out your phone or be working on other things in the middle of an in-person meeting. Try to eliminate all distractions and avoid this during a video meeting/call. It’s okay to issue a quick reminder to your team to close other programs and devices while they’re participating in a virtual meeting. You may come up with your own working from home best practices guide to be transparent about these expectations and policies if you didn’t already have one for your team.
Improve Productivity While Working Remotely – Salesforce’s Advice
Once the meeting concludes, the session note-taker should send a recap to all participants. If a follow-up makes sense, schedule the next meeting right away so that it stays top of mind.
Collaborative workspaces can help to fulfill a lot of the needs of a meeting, and, even better, your notes and progress are often automatically tracked with collaborative tools like these.
This is not as a means to be big brother, but to make searching for conversations, documentation, and file-sharing history, among other things, easier.
By establishing clear meeting guidelines and helping your team adapt to the virtual space by maintaining professional connections through video chats, you can help to keep up their motivation and productivity while working from home.
Not to mention, this should add to your culture and morale, even when your team is working miles apart.