Working From Home Safely During COVID

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Working from home can be an entirely new experience for both managers and employees. Even though many people have been working from home for the better part of this year there are still no hard and fast rules.

However, there are ways that management and employees can work together to make this timeless stressful.

How Can Employees Help Themselves During The COVID Pandemic?

It’s very easy to fall into bad habits when working from home. However, here are a few tips that may help workers keep their mental health as well as their work habits in good order.

          • Clearly define your schedule
              • Begin your day at an appropriate time (e.g. 9am) and then start with a small task.
              • Finish at a pre-decided time every day.
              • When is your work week? – i.e. Monday-Friday, etc.

         

        • Continue “dressing for work”
            • You don’t have to wear slacks and a shirt but getting dressed like someone might actually see you can have a substantial effect on your mental resilience during workdays.

 

        • Work time and Leisure time
            • Now that work is no longer located in another location, it’s essential to define work time and leisure time.
            • Store away ‘work equipment’ at the end of working days or whenever possible. Take a walk after work to give your body a breather. Simple things like this will increase your innate sense that the ‘workday’ is over.

 

      • Ergonomic needs
          • Not every home is equipped for ‘working from home’. Where possible, communicate to your managers and employers how they can help you navigate any potential impediments to your job. Ergonomic assessment, keyboards, chairs, back supports, or other technical equipment should be made available where possible.

Increased ‘Non-Work’ Demands During The COVID 19 Crisis

Both managers and employees should be aware, if they’re not already, that working from home increases ‘non-work’ demands on employees’ time throughout the day. Employers need to account for the necessity of those working from home to take more frequent but shorter breaks.

Alongside those here are some other areas where managers and employers can aid their staff.

Management Must Be More Adaptive Than Ever During The Pandemic

As we said there are no hard and fast rules for businesses operating during the COVID risk. This year has been a huge learning curve for many businesses. However, there are a few ways that managers can give their employees a sense of independence while maintaining a productive work schedule.

Management must strive to be more supportive and motivational for staff while maintaining their other responsibilities.

Don’t Micromanage

Not being able to physically see your employees creates a sense that you must check up on them constantly, whether via emails, management systems, or Zoom calls. This will not only undermine your employees’ feelings of independence but overall will lead to a lack of trust. Management staff should take care to avoid micromanaging their employees.

Targets

Naturally, management still has tasks and goals they need for their employees. However, managers should take care not to constantly require feedback regarding these tasks. It will actually lead to a slowdown in productivity.

Re-Engage

Every few weeks, check in with your staff to see if the current work system is still useful. Find ways to adapt schedules and rotas that allow staff to reach targets and perform to their best.

General Tips For Working From Home Safely During COVID

More generally for those continuing to work from home make sure that you’re getting adequate sunlight. It’s easy to sit in front of a computer screen all day and avoid the outside world. But getting a regular dose of Vitamin D will help your mood and productivity.

Avoid the constant glare of the computer screen and get up and take regular breaks, around five minutes every hour. You should also give your eyes a break by focusing on an object (that’s not your screen!) every twenty minutes or so.

We realise that it’s not possible for everyone to have an ergonomic chair in their home. However, you can offset the effects of sitting too long by stretching. Taking the time to regularly stretch can help your body avoid discomfort and pain. Remember to stretch slowly and carefully, especially if you’re not engaged in a regular stretching routine (e.g. yoga).

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