Productivity, communication, morale, motivation. These fundamental aspects of a workforce have been put at risk due to the COVID19 Pandemic as a vast number of employees have taken up home working. Our Client relationship Director Kyle Hughes has offered honest and valuable insight on Failures at Working from Home and the Lessons Learned.

Adjusting from intense work environments, surrounded by people and activity, to solitary conditions that greatly increase your need for on self-motivation and task focus is something that many on LinkedIn are having to adapt to. Following a conversation with a friend earlier this morning who was struggling with this change in process, I thought I would briefly share four lessons I learned over the last five years. After leaving frequent, high intensity people focused military operations I completed a distance learning degree, then left the Army to start Applied Influence Group and now working for Premier Partnership, I have learnt a lot about ‘working from home’.

Commit. I found it was too easy to hide in the early days of working remotely and was a poor habit to get into, affecting both my own mental health and the performance of the company. Broadcast your intentions, make public commitments to doing them and take full accountability for your actions. This gave me a greater sense of purpose and the pressure I put on myself to complete the things I wanted to achieve, made me so much more productive.

Abstain. Once I completed a gruelling day, I regularly had a drink to toast the completion. Not only was this not good for my health, it also made my weekends less special. The beer or glass of wine I had on a Saturday night, no longer tasted quite as good as I had already had my fair share in the week. Now I deliberately abstain from several things (takeaway, reading a specific book, watching a film, bar of chocolate etc) in the week and make sure I enjoy them at weekends. It gives me something to look forward to and feels like a deserved reward to myself upon completion.

Lists. I had a tendency of drifting focus on tasks, became easily distracted and felt like I was not really achieving anything as I was no longer surrounded by my team and getting extrinsic feedback. At the start of your workday write down everything you want to achieve and make sure you draw a line through it once you are done. Not only will this help organise and structure your day, you will get an endorphin hit each time you cross something off and every time you look down at the list to check on your progress.

Communication. Too often in the early days I just stuck my head in the laptop and shut myself off from others. Doing this without checking in with people took me into a very unhealthy place. Thankfully, Emma Dutton (Applied Influence Group CEO) recognised this and one of the things we put in place was regular check ins and frequent communication. Microsoft Teams is great for this, if you are not using it and have it, give it a chance.

The list of lessons learned goes on, but I know people’s attention spans are capped (especially when reading my ramblings) but hopefully this helps a couple of people that are currently experiencing some of the ruts I got myself into when learning how to work from home.