Since lockdown began, many of us have been getting used to working from home for the first time. Some of our colleagues share their homeworking experiences including the highs, lows and the learnings.
I’m now 10 weeks into lockdown which is a new experience for me having rarely worked from home in the past. Overall it has been positive – I’ve got the set up I need technology wise with Skype becoming a regular feature of my interactions with my team and colleagues across the business.
I live in North West London, so have enjoyed using the extra time I now have in the evenings where I am no longer commuting, spending it trying new activities with my kids which I’m really enjoying. However, not commuting also has its downsides, as I have always used the time to unwind and separate my working day from my ‘home day’. I now need to be a bit more disciplined with myself to make sure I take time out at either end of the day - and sometimes at lunchtime too – so I can spend some time with the kids who are always keen to spend as much time with Dad as they can now that I’m home more often.
At first, working from home was all new and exciting and I felt like I had more freedom. But that soon wore off when I realised that I missed having other people around me – it also helped keep me motivated and more focused. To motivate myself at home, I started setting goals for myself each day. For example, we get sent our telephony, sales and customer service stats every day and if I see one creeping below target that is one of my key focuses for the day.
I’ve found that keeping my desk free from clutter and non-related work stuff really helps keep me in the right head space. I’ve also made a real effort to create and stick to a daily routine, making sure I get up and am ready with time to spare before my work day starts. I also make sure I get out for a walk once a day.
Before lockdown, I worked from home two days a week and enjoyed using the quiet time away from the office to get a lot of my writing work done, as well a few loads of washing and something hot for lunch! However, the house isn’t quite so quiet anymore now that my husband and two young sons are also at home. Home schooling has definitely proved to be the biggest challenge. Both my husband and I have continued to work while trying to home school our boys and at times have found it very stressful and felt a lot of guilt for not being able to give them our time during the day.
Our coping strategy is to try and start every day positively and with the best intentions. We’ve found that routine is key so we treat every weekday as if we were going to work or school. This means making sure everyone is showered, dressed, breakfasted, and all dishes are washed by 8.45am. We also have a whiteboard with the times of our work calls and two or three things we’d like the boys to achieve – this way we can be sure one of us is with them and they have realistic goals. Although some days this does all fall down by 10am – and that’s ok too!
Date Added: 4th June 2020