Adapting to a new way of working

It is a worrying time for all of us at the moment. Many of us are now adapting to working from home and it could soon become the norm.

So how do we make the most out of a bad situation?

With businesses going remote we need to make sure we stay connected, this will keep colleagues engaged and proactive with sharing ideas. Implementing these changes now will help the wellbeing of staff. Two main things think about:

  • Having clear expectations and knowing what is expected of you is key when working from home.
  • Online Skype video calls with your team, starting the conversation with a few minutes of non-work-related discussion ‘water cooler chat’ will keep your colleague spirits up.

The more effort put into keeping up communication with your colleagues the less chance of them feeling isolated. This is what we need to prevent as this could potentially impact on morale and productivity.

working from home, man in blue shirt, computer desk, work from home station, shelving

Top 5 Tips when working from home:

  • Making your new work station comfortable

Not having an equipped or comfortable work station when working from home can result in a  decrease in productivity. Make sure you make an area within your home which is exclusively for work. This could be simply moving your desk into a quiet room away from distractions.  Try to avoid staying in bed on your laptop and instead sit upright in a comfortable chair. By creating this quieter and more comfortable workspace makes it easier to concentrate.

  • Don’t forget to take breaks!

I know it may be difficult as you don’t want management thinking you are slacking off while being at home, however, you still need to take regular breaks from your screen. Leaving your desk for lunch, going for a walk and doing some exercise will help you feel refreshed and more productive when you return.

  • Plan your day

Try to take a few minutes before going to bed or even 15 minutes in the morning to create a to-do list for the day and make the priorities first on the list. You can also set the reminders in your calendar so you don’t forget. If you start your day off wondering what needs to be done, that is time wasted that you could have been working on a task, you want to finish the day thinking you were productive, not just busy.

  • Stay Connected with Colleagues

Working from home does not mean you need to lose the social connection with colleagues. Interacting with your team is so important at this time. When planning your priorities for the day set one of them as a short video conference with your team over Skype. Other examples of software you could use to stay in touch is Microsoft Teams,  Zoom, Slack and Moxtra. Remember, social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Linkedin are always a quick way to catch up as they all have the messenger facility. Whether this is just to have a non-work-related conversation it keeps spirits up and your colleagues feeling less isolated.

laptop conference call, video call, laptop screen with conference video

  •  Blocking out home distractions

Working from home can bring with it numerous distractions, whether it be that other family members are not working, the noise of the tv or washing machine in the background. Ensure that family members are aware you are working from home and try to limit the time you engage with them while you are working. Studies have found that playing music or audiobooks in the background has helped with concentration when working from home. Planning your day and also taking regular breaks will all contribute to blocking out the distractions.

At Legal Rooms, we are continuously helping businesses across the country. We are specialists in R&D Tax Credits and our mission is to help claim money back from HMRC for businesses which qualify under the R&D Tax Credits Scheme. If you think we may be able to help you please do get in touch.  

During this global pandemic, we are doing our best to remain ‘business as usual’ so we can help keep businesses afloat. Read more about how we are adapting to Covid-19 here.