Electrical Design Specialist
With COVID-19 restrictions closing most offices, many of us had a few months trying to navigate working from home. By now, some of you may have returned to your place of business, and while I am sure it has changed quite a bit to the way things were prior to COVID-19, it is different than working from home.
I am not going to talk about the technical challenges or the furniture and space required of setting up a home office. There have been many great articles written about this and chances are you read them when you first started working from home. I want to discuss how working from home has been for you, what challenges it has brought up, and possible ways of creating a better experience for you now and in the future.
Let’s start with one of the obvious differences: Distractions. I am home. My wife or partner is working on his/her own project and occasionally needs my input or wants to share his/her thoughts. What is the BIG deal, right? What about having your kids run around? They are likely home as well and expect to be entertained. Throw in a dog or a cat, and calls from friends and family since they are not working and seek your attention. And of course, one of the biggest distractions – ME. When I’m at home in my own space, “I get to make tea or coffee whenever I feel like it, have a snack here and there, make lunch, watch a bit of TV (just one Netflix episode…), or listen to music or the radio. Oh yes, then there are all these other chores I have on my to-do-list. Why not do some of them since I feel like it and taking care of the garbage only takes a few minutes anyway, right?” In other words, working from home can create the perfect storm when it comes to distractions. It can be difficult to get any work done.
Are you someone that is getting easily distracted and pulled away to other tasks and opportunities? Or maybe it is the other way around for you? Let’s take a look at that.
While you are typically focused and disciplined at work, meetings and interruptions are frequent. Perhaps working from home is a blessing in disguise. “Finally, I can concentrate on my work without anything or anyone getting in my way. Hey, I might even work 10-hour days. My plate is so full that I could use that extra time to clean up my backlog.” Speaking for myself I can get so focused that all of a sudden, I missed a meal or two, being far away in la-la land and hardly approachable. Being in the zone and deeply concentrating can provide a great amount of satisfaction, however, over a period of time there is a good chance that fatigue and tiredness sets in, if not even burnout.
Working from home can be a wonderful thing for both, you and your employer If you can find a way to balance both work and your personal life. Getting sufficient work done to keep your project moving forward, to show good performance, and taking time for yourself, your family, and your friends. Here some ideas you can think about. Answer these questions for yourself. Make a plan, and do your best to stick to it. Present your plan to your loved ones and/or negotiate with them to create a win-win for everyone.
What are your biggest challenges around working from home and how you have been able to make this work for you? I’d love to hear your thoughts or questions, feel free to reach out through the Contact form.