Regardless of what the dictionary says, working “remote” does not need to be distant, isolated or unrelated. In today’s hyper-connected world, we have more tools than ever to enable remoted togetherness––the ability for us to stay connected while working remote.
I’ve been working remote with ScottsMiracle-Gro for the past two and a half years. Prior to that, I worked remote for almost 15 years with my previous employer. In both cases, I started at the world headquarters and then moved and began working from home.
It’s been a journey for me, and I’ve learned a lot over the years. Here are my top six tips for working remote. I use the acronym R-E-M-O-T-E.
R = Routine
Establish a routine and make a determined effort to stick to it.
- Set a start and stop time.
- If you need a shower to feel human, get it done before you start your work day.
- Schedule lunch, time to workout, a dog walk, etc.
E = Equip
Equip yourself with the tools needed to be productive and healthy.
- Establish a designated work space. It can be makeshift or traditional but make it yours.
- Pay attention to ergonomics. A comfortable work space keeps you feeling your best.
- Invest in a wireless headset, full size monitor and keyboard, and a good chair.
M = Move
Change positions often.
- Shift from sitting to standing.
- Take micro brakes and stretch your neck and shoulders.
- Walk around while on calls.
O = Organize
Make a plan for your day.
- Schedule calls and meetings and block out time for work.
- Use Google Tasks for follow-ups and action items.
- Take time and schedule breaks for lunch, a workout, dog walk, etc.
T = Time
Take time to connect.
- Ease into meetings and calls with some non-work chat. It’s a good time to catch up with colleagues before you dive into work.
- Be intentional about staying in touch with coworkers. Reach out to team members regularly to check in.
- Use technology. The video feature on Google Hangouts or Zoom goes a long way in making you feel connected.
E = Expectations
Expect the unexpected.
- Your child will cry, your dog will bark.
- Technology will fail.
- Stay calm, take a deep breath and remember we’re all in the same situation. We’re in this together!
Melanie has been working remote with ScottsMiracle-Gro for the past two and a half years, and prior to that, she worked remote for almost 15 years with a previous employer.
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