Many Americans are now working from home due to the coronavirus pandemic. Never have employees telecommuted on such a broad scale. Working from home does have its benefits, like no daily commute or need to dress up. It also means it’s up to you to keep yourself motivated and use your time efficiently and effectively, as you would in a traditional office environment. Here are some helpful tips for setting yourself up for success.
Avoid on-the-job injuries from home
Working all day from your couch or hunched over a coffee table can wreak havoc on your back, neck, shoulders, wrists and hands. If you don’t have an ergonomically correct chair, try changing your position often, putting a pillow on your seat or add a rolled towel for lumbar support. We also suggest elevating your laptop to avoid neck and eye strain. The top of your monitor should be just below eye level.
Connect and collaborate with co-workers
Don’t let working remote let you feel disconnected with co-workers. Continue to build strong and meaningful relationships, even though you are telecommuting. Video and digital meeting space are both excellent tools to stay connected. Try over-communicating with frequent check-ins and status updates to avoid any confusion. We also suggest creating new team rituals that work virtually, like virtual coffee hours or lunches, to talk about what’s happening in your life as you would in the office.
Minimize cybersecurity exposures
Your employer should be able to provide you with specific directions to handle cybersecurity. If your employer doesn’t offer such protocols or if you are self-employed, there are a variety of tools to protect yourself. The tools include using a strong password, using a VPN, setting up a firewall, multi-factor authentication, securing your home router, backing up data regularly, installing updates frequently and avoiding encrypted emails, phishing scams and remote desktop tools.
While working from home, you are often more susceptible to distractions, like social media, television, household chores and the fridge. To avoid this, work on managing your attention, controlling your environment and setting boundaries. Writing a list of your own worst distractions to come up with strategies on how to avoid them should help you be more successful and productive.
Learn about our
How to manage a remote workforce
If you manage a remote team, you should be setting clear expectations, having open communication and flex-agreements with your employees. Being as open and available as possible will help you and your employees stay on the same page.
Know if your work equipment is covered under insurance
If you are a remote employee of a company, you are most likely covered your employer’s insurance for any work-related issues or losses. Check with your employer if you have questions. If you have a home-based company, you must understand what your homeowners and business insurance policies cover. Equipped with that information can help you determine what additional coverage you may need.
If you have any questions about your insurance coverage while you are working from home, contact your independent Integrity agent For information on COVID-19, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational and suggestion purposes only.