How to navigate the transition to remote work

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COVID-19 has changed life as we know it. From travel restrictions to reconsidering going out to enjoy springtime sun; the change is palpable. The government has recommended work from home for all those who can. As a measure of safety, most of the corporates in the country have directed their employees to do so.

How to navigate the transition to remote workWhile this working arrangement may be normal for some, others are not used to prolonged days of work from home. Here is how one can ensure productivity and collaboration during this period.

  • Communicate the work from home policy

Swedes like to maintain their work-life balance. At the same time, they are also ready to pitch in more hours as and when their work requires. Households where both the parents work and have young children may find this situation challenging.

Organisations may revise their work from home policies to accommodate such employees. If the existing policies are adequate, it may still help to send it again.

  • Focus on the mental health of employees

Sweden has the highest number of single-person households in the world. Almost half of the Swedish households have only person living in the house. In this situation, living in isolation and working from home may take a toll on the employees’ mental health.

Assure the employees that everyone is in this together and send reminders to convey the same. Tell them to take regular breaks, indulge in their hobbies and exercise. Organisations can also send information regarding online health communities and self-help groups.

  • Keep the team together

Sudden social distancing from office colleagues, who your employees are used to seeing every day, can be overwhelming. Arrange daily or alternate day video calls to understand the progress of each team member.

This way, the employees will also feel connected to their teams. If possible, managers can end the call on a lighter note and ask how everyone is doing. Managers can also extend help on the organisation’s behalf for emergencies and other immediate needs.

  • Make meetings more successful

When in office, teams usually know what is going on and what is the status of their projects. Managers may find it challenging to maintain such an inclusive environment when everyone is working remotely.

To resolve this problem, the team leaders can share frequent progress reports. Moreover, they can send the agenda of the meetings at least 24 hours in advance so that everyone is prepared. It is particularly necessary if it is a brainstorming session. Sending the action items after the meetings will also help in tracking the progress of projects.

  • Home office upgrade

Dedicating a particular corner of the house for office work can help in maintaining productivity. Especially for individuals who are new to the concept of remote working or have kids at home.

Select a private corner, possibly with a good view. It may be time to invest in an ergonomic chair to avoid backaches and other health problems. A wireless router, whiteboard, speakers and charging accessories are other things that one can consider placing in the home office. Placing an indoor plant will breathe life into this space and is considered good for the wellbeing.