How To Better Replicate Your Office Experience In A Work From Home Setup
Most of us experienced it in the first quarter of 2020. What started as a few days quarantine became our new lifestyle before we knew it. Unlike social media, we refuse to call it #NewNormal, because what is even normal about it anymore?
Almost two years down the line, most of us are still figuring out:
- How to organize our workspace just like the one back in the office
- How to communicate with co-workers as effortlessly as we did in the pre-COVID-19 era
- How to truly disconnect from work once we log off
- How to present our best selves during virtual meetings
In a nutshell, all of us are trying to climb the same mountain peak with different routes— an ideal work from home day that flows as easily as the offline work setup did.
So what does it take to get there?
- A better personal work setup and routine
- Organized teamwork experience
Keep reading ahead to understand what these two look like.
Invest in your workspace (Spoiler: this includes things more than money)
Don't be like this bunny here. Don't torture your feet in an attempt to relieve your back.
We know it's hard not to miss your comfortable office chair or your cubicle where you could sit for hours and let your creative juices flow.
If you've been contemplating whether to spend on that workstation you added to your Amazon wish list 2 months back, take this as a sign and order it already. Every cell in your body will thank you for that!
Other than your finances, here are some ways you can use to make it fun:
- Use sticky notes to jot down your to-dos
- Wondering if that 'Dreams don't work unless you do' poster is too much to add to your remote work setup? No way, go ahead and put it up if that inspires you to show up every day!
- Left that favorite coffee mug in the office pantry? Let's get a new one for your morning cuppa joe.
Bonus tip: Stick to the same 1 or 2 mugs the way you would at the office because your mind will start associating it with work. Just one of the self-proclaimed psychological hacks we really hope works out for you!
Get up. Dress up. Show up.
“When you feel like you’ve made the effort to get dressed and put on something you feel good in, then you’ll be more likely to approach your day with confidence and with purpose.”
- Sally Mackinnon, Founder, Styled By Sally
As much as we are all comfortable in our pajamas, dressing up for the office gives us that ultimate kick to transition from homebody to work mode. Our energy and mood are always linked to how we prepare ourselves before we start the work.
Start small. Put on the favorite formal shirt you would always wear for office meetings. Notice how it affects your productivity and offers a throwback to your old office routine.
Get out of the office a.k.a your home desk
Unlike the offline set-up where we were compelled to leave our desks at a specific time, a remote work set-up doesn't give us such solid deadlines. As a result, we keep pushing our work and then end up working at odd hours without really adding any value to the task.
So how to force yourself to get off the chair when your day ends?
You have to put in efforts right from the time you begin your workday. Be extremely strict with yourself when it comes to managing your time. Practice deep focus techniques to finish tasks. Complete meetings within the stipulated time limit. Make an accountability buddy. Do whatever works for you. Just make sure it helps you to not stay back at your desk even a minute longer than you need to.
Don't just miss your coworkers, call them
Here is Kunal Shah expressing one of the downsides of working from home:
In reply to him, another thought leader of the industry, Ankur Warikoo says:
Although we agree with them, we believe that the remote work setup doesn’t have to be as miserable as it is may sometimes be perceived. Everything is in our control and so is holding onto those special bonds with our co-workers.
Get on 1:1 conversations post-work hours to discuss how the day went. Plan for gaming sessions using Slack games like Bored that no one can say no to. Drop them a relatable meme to make them laugh in the middle of a lousy Thursday. What else would you add to the list?
Make technology your best friend to become a remote work champ!
Often find yourself in the vicious cycle of coordinating with coworkers over 100 chats to fix a meeting of 30 mins? With Doodle, you can simply create a poll adding date, time, description, and let people vote for their preferred option. You can also sync your calendar with it.
With Hypercontext, you get to keep everything about meetings streamlined. It allows you to share your agendas with the team, take notes, record minutes of the meetings and ensure thorough documentation.
You need to add this to your kit if your job involves constant communication with vendors, coordinators, leads, and customers. HubSpot CRM is an easy and customizable relationship management tool for managing your contacts/leads effectively.
Trello lets you tackle your to-do list most productively. It allows you to collaborate with people on tasks, track the progress and manage the daily work without having to take mental note of everything.
Whether you're a 300-people team or a 30-people small group, Slack offers a smooth communication experience through its chat, voice calls and video calls functionality.
Don't tell us you use Slack and don't play Bored games. From thought-provoking games like Who's The Faker? to totally casual no-pressure games like Roastmasters, Bored knows how to infuse the fun element into your day. Add them to your Slack for free here.
We would love for you to incorporate these tips and let us know how they make your remote work setup as awesome as your in-office workstyle.