The typical understanding of ‘homeworking’, is a wealthy suntanned person on a beach, somewhere exotic with a cocktail and umbrella on the desk & the laptop sat under a matching umbrella with a sea breeze blowing in the background. The other typical view when you tell someone who either doesn’t work from home or doesn’t ‘endorse it’ is to expect comments like ‘oh working from the pub then’, giving the assumption that working from home is some sort of code for skiving off work.
It really isn’t given the right environment one can be even more productive than working a typical 9 to 5 plus commute in the office, if anything positive can come out of this pandemic, then I genuinely believe it’s the home working doubters & business leaders alike finally opening their eyes to the potential of allowing their office work force to become an even stronger home work force.
More IT professionals than ever before are finally being ‘trusted’ to pack up their office kit, swap the desktop for a laptop & venture into this new working from home arena to which there can be great benefits, such as flexible working, zero commute time & cost which can lead to a much greater home work life balance. On the other hand without putting the right tools & routines in place early on many can struggle in this new working environment with an anxious craving to get back to the old office routine. With some offices being closed long term this can also have a knock on affect to a person’s mental wellbeing as well as decrease in work productivity.
Life in the new homeworking ‘norm’ – some are lucky enough to have a study or office bedroom but for others (myself included) have been thrust into the house, along with the children & their partner. In my case as both a parent and a home carer to the mother of my children it has been a huge & very challenging shift.
On the face of it, homeworking sounds brilliant to others, especially those in non IT roles with comments like ‘I bet it is great being at home with the family all together’. Then the reality of that kicks in, x number of family members all cooped up in the house 24/7, 7 days a week, it can send not just you but other family members into a mental breakdown but do not fear, I am going to be sharing my experience, good & bad of techniques I have learned, trialled, binned or stuck with to help with:
- Keeping morale up & positive mental wellbeing for all members of the household
- Setup ways to work to enable one to not just tick over, waiting for the office to re-open but to thrive in the new working environment
- Review the actual tools & equipment to enable you to work from home comfortably & effectively
Stay tuned for more when i’ll be taking a look at the importance of taking ‘regular breaks’, breaking down what it means, examples of what we can do, what we probably shouldn’t be doing & the benefits it can bring to us both productively & mentally.