The practice of working from home has grown in popularity over the last few years, and with the COVID-19 pandemic still looming, working from home has become a necessity for many. At KnowBe4, the majority of our team is now working from home. With modern technology it should be easy to work from home and still stay in touch with your team members and supervisors, right? However, other challenges are presented when working from home. From our CEO and our Internal Growth Department, here are some best practices to stay as effective as possible while working from home.
In the upcoming weeks, we will likely see more and more people working from home. Think ahead and get yourself prepared for the change. Make sure you have all the necessary hardware and software to stay in touch with your team. Find ways to maintain your routine. Set up a dedicated workspace, and find ways to stay focused on your work.
- Maintain Effective Communication. This is the number one challenge presented while working from home. Using online tools such as instant messaging systems and video conferencing systems are absolutely necessary to ensure everyone stays on the same page from miles away. At KnowBe4 we start every morning with a company-wide meeting lead by our CEO, Stu, and other executives. With people working from home these meetings have simply transitioned to being conducted 100% through video conferencing tools. We also follow the company meeting with smaller team meetings to check-in, coordinate, and keep everyone's goals aligned; these are also done through video conferencing very easily. Remember, ABC - Always Be Communicating. No one ever expects you to be in front of your computer at all times. You want to get lunch or take a walk? Go for it. Just make sure everyone who needs to know about it – like a supervisor – is kept up to date on your whereabouts.
- Keep your daily routine as much as possible. Being secluded for so many hours of the day can have negative effects on some people. It is important to keep your normal routine on track as much as possible. In the office, did you work out every day during your lunch break? Keep that up! In some cases, you might need to find alternative methods to maintain your routine. In the case of daily workouts, you may need to find at-home workouts that don't require gym equipment, or online classes to lead you through a workout. Whatever it is, make sure you keep that routine going and care for your mental and physical health!
- Have a dedicated workspace. We know, the couch and the bed just look so comfortable, but there are lots of distractions there; not to mention how unergonomic those spots are. Get a designated spot that is for work. A spot that you know as soon as you're there, it's time to work.
- Find your focus. For some, it may be hard to stay focused on work outside of the office environment. Determine what will help you personally keep on task. Try short term goal setting (i.e. X number of calls in the next two hours). More frequent but shorter breaks may also be helpful for those with difficulty focusing. Reach your goal, take 5 and get back into working. You know yourself the best, so it's up to you to figure out what strategies will work the best for keeping you on task.
While at home, it's also a great time to look for a new job at KnowBe4!
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