Is the new norm for your career working from home? If you answer yes to this question, you are not alone. Millions of employees around the world are now changing their workplaces. The previous norm may have been to be working at a corporate office, in a cubicle, or even at a coffee shop. Now, many employees are working in a room made up as an office in their own home or apartment. Such a dramatic shift entails many logistic challenges. If you can successfully pass all of those hurdles, how can you ensure that working from home will allow you to be as successful as before?
GMS Experts Share Their Success Tips
As a corporate relocation services provider, GMS has extensive experience with the challenges of our clients’ transferees who often work in remote locations. In the United States, clients have transferees assigned in places such as Dickinson, North Dakota and Jarrell, Texas. Globally, clients have transferees assigned in places such as Acuña, Mexico, and Trondheim, Norway. Whether working in a small town, mid-sized city, or a megalopolis such as New York City, employees working from home often face the same issues.
GMS has several employees with experience working from home. These employees know what it takes to be successful at work in their own home environment. Several of them had been asked by clients how they made working from home a winning proposition. Recently, four of these employees got together to share their top tips for success.
GMS Experts: Tenure Working From Home
Ana Barros: Senior Global Account Manager, 8 years
Tricia Davis: Senior Relocation Coach, 13 years
Sam Hoey: Senior Vice President, Business Development, 15 years
Danielle Sanzobrino: Senior Vice President, Account Management, 13 years
Working From Home: Top Success Tips
1. Establish your hours and stick to it!
2. Set your alarm, shower, and get dressed in the morning. You can still wear your fuzzy slippers – no dress shoes required.
3. Find a room to work where you can shut the door. Do not set your office up in your bedroom or you may find yourself with narcolepsy. If your office location is not 100% quiet, use headphones.
4. Turn off distractions such as television and notifications on social media. Consider listening to quiet music in the background. Any Kenny G lovers out there?
5. Consider making a lunch the night before so you can easily and quickly warm it up the next day. This is much healthier than binging on your Hot Cheetos because you have run out of time between calls.
Take Care of Yourself
6. Go for a walk at lunch, get some fresh air, and clear your head. Strike a yoga pose. Downward-Facing Dog anyone?
7. You may have the mindset of “They need to know that I’m working from home.” Take breaks and eat your lunch somewhere other than your office. To avoid “the work from home 15” (gaining 15 pounds), set out daily snacks and stick to them. Note: this is much easier said than done.
8. Set timers and outlook reminders to help you stay on track. Make lists at the beginning and end of each day and check them off as complete. Seeing all these checkmarks can be very rewarding!
9. When in doubt, call your coworker before you send an email. One email can turn into 400 emails but often a quick call can solve it all. Feel free to post this on your wall!
Etiquette Tips for Working From Home
10. Be thoughtful about email etiquette. Do not “reply to all” unless necessary. If you have something to communicate on a particular client, email the entire operations team. Don’t rely on just the team lead to forward along your communication.
11. Stay connected. Call at least one coworker every day to keep in touch. Anyone else singing the “Reach Out and Touch Someone” jingle from the 1987 AT&T Commercial?
12. If you’re attending a webex, login/dial in at least 5-10 minutes prior to ensure you work through potential technical difficulties.
13. Attend all meetings and speak up. You still need to share your opinion and be heard. If you are dialed into a meeting and can’t hear very well, let the in-person attendees know so they can adjust their phone. When you are not speaking, put your phone on mute. I heard a lady once yell, “Do you want mayo on your sandwich, ma?” Don’t do that if you are working from home.
14. Take a sick day when necessary. Email your manager when you need to go to the doctor over lunch.
15. Set boundaries with your kids and spouse/significant other on your work hours. Make them aware that if the door is shut you cannot be interrupted. Try posting a STOP Sign, or something else to notify them.
Meet Macy, Sam Hoey’s Dog
16. If you have a dog, she may bark and that’s ok. But try to minimize the dog interruptions. When you see the UPS delivery driver pull up to your home, you should run to the closet and shut the door so your barking dog does not interrupt a phone call.
17. Dust off your crockpot, air fryer, and instapot. Marinade the meat at lunch or in the morning so making dinner is quick and easy!
18. Tell your family that nighttime and weekends are reserved for family fun time to do laundry and cleaning. Can you think of a better way to bond? Group effort people!
19. End the day working from home with a scheduled routine. Take your dog for a walk, go on a bike ride, enjoy an ice cold beverage, start making dinner, or play with your Guinea pig. Anything that makes you smile and helps you re-engage with your home life.
What Should Employers do About Working From Home?
Employers should provide a wide range of support for employees who are newly working from home. Training on new communication methods is important. Offering expert assistance in setting up home office systems can help employees who do not have technological skills in this area. Providing tips for success that other employees working from home can share will give employees peace of mind.
GMS’ team of corporate relocation experts has helped thousands of our clients navigate issues that impact employees working at remote locations. As a result, our team can help your company share tips for success at working from home with your employees. Companies should take a proactive approach to helping employees during transitions between corporate office and home office locations.
GMS was the first relocation company to register as a .com. The company also created the first online interactive tools and calculators, and revolutionized the entire relocation industry. GMS continues to set the industry pace as the pioneer in innovation and technology solutions with its proprietary MyRelocation® technology platform.
Contact our experts online to discuss how your company can share tips for successful working from home, or give us a call at 800.617.1904 or 480.922.0700 today.