Setting expectations for your team
Working from home may be a new concept for some of your team so you need to make sure that you set out and communicate clear guidelines around your expectations – working hours, communication, reporting etc
- If they have contact with clients/customers, set out your expectations in terms of availability, response times and service levels.
- Ensure they don’t feel isolated with regular communication – check-in on their workload, priorities, are they facing any challenges?
- Do they have the correct hardware, software and security set-up so that they can do their job effectively?
- Select your chosen communication tools and make sure that the team are comfortable in using them – WhatsApp, Slack, MS teams, Zoom, messenger
- Use online tools like Trello or Asana to agree to do lists and priorities
- Review the arrangements regularly, are they still working for the team? Make adjustments where necessary.
Surviving working from home
- Don’t sit in your pyjamas all day! Get dressed as you would for work and follow your normal routine
- Create your work-space – you may have a home office but if not then the kitchen table is a good option, but not the sofa! Where possible ensure your chair, desk and laptop are in a good position to avoid any posture related problems
- If your family are at home with you, set guidelines for them, let them know that you are working and can’t be disturbed with any homebased tasks
- Try to minimise distractions – it’s not an opportunity to get the housework done or put the washing on! You’re at work
- Have a plan – what’s your to do list for the day, time block for tasks and be strict with yourself. There are some great task management tools that you can use – Trello, Asana, Toggle
- Challenge all non-urgent tasks – phone calls, emails, social media, don’t let them disrupt your day
- Communicate and check in regularly with the office – Whatsapp, chat, MS teams, Slack etc
- Is your Wifi connection strong enough to now deal with you working from home?
- Use virtual meeting software like Zoom with both your colleagues and clients – by turning off your camera you can improve bandwidth and always ensure that meetings are recorded
- Use earphones to remove external noise or indicate to the kids/ others that you are on the phone
- Keep up your energy levels and motivation – set time aside for going for a run or to the gym to clear your head.
- Make sure you take a lunch break – we need food and drink to keep our body and mind performing
- Avoid total isolation, look after your mental well-being – go out if you can and have social interaction, chat to your colleagues/ friends and have a virtual cuppa
Are you are struggling to get focussed and are finding yourself busy but not achieving anything? If so, it’s time to take action.
Gary King, ABM Director & Regional Head for the North
Access our tool here to get started: tendo-uk.com/productive
First published 20th April 2020
Republished by kind permission of the Association of Business Mentors