Throughout my career, I have had options to work from home depending on the project. It took some time to figure out what works best for me and how I can stay motivated and focused. I would like to share three simple steps to creating the right working environment while using the right technology so that you can be productive and successful at home.
When I first start the day, I create a tranquil environment by turning on some incense or diffusing essential oils and playing some relaxing music of nature or ocean sounds. I have created this environment because I find that being at home you quickly turn on the laptop and faced with e-mails, requests, pending items, whereas if you were to drive to work, you have some time to prepare mentally for what is to come when you open up the laptop. I used to find myself not taking the time that I have in the morning when working for a home to have some “me” time and setting an environment that is conducive for work. Some may call this luxury, which ultimately compared to some moments in my career being stuck in 2 hours traffic, it is.
I have a desk in my apartment, however, I found myself very tense when I did use it in the past. The key here is to try different spaces in your home. If you live in an apartment that may mean a common space in your building, if you live in a house that may mean a den area. For myself, I have transitioned from a desk in a small room that I have my girly and glam products to a beautiful den area we created with a large round table. I added some beautiful accents, colors, decorations that convey peace and tranquility. One area that I have tried and has not worked for me is the couch because it gives bad posture and our couch is facing a lot of distractions.
My last piece of advice is to have the technology needed to be successful away from your office and team. I make sure to have a printer/scanner at home that works, or make use of Docusign for signatures if you have that available for your team. I have an awesome Jabra Evolve 75e head-set that is wireless so I can get some steps in while connected to a meeting. Within my team, we use Microsoft Teams to collaborate, co-author, chat and connect to other apps such as Planner, Visual Studio and more. During the time that we meet, we do our best to turn our cameras on so we can see one another. If your company does not offer tools, then do your research and find out what are some easy tools to use that can make your team successful, that can mean using Slack if you have a small team and want a free messaging, comprehensive tool.