The Future Of Work Is Remote
Even if you didn’t know what WFH meant a few months back, you probably do now. WFH stands for “work from home” and it’s something that most of us have been doing for over a year in some shape or form.
Overall, it has been reported that employees working from home are happier than those who don’t. Their Workplace Happiness index is up by 2 points to 73 out of 100, compared to 71 two years ago. Workplace Happiness Index isn’t just some made up (invented) term, it’s an internationally adopted scoring system that assesses (evaluates, measures) employee happiness based on a worker’s job satisfaction, willingness to recommend their current employer, and their likelihood of switching jobs in the near future. By the way, the number one country with the highest Workplace Happiness Index is currently Belgium, followed closely by Norway, so if you’re currently working for a Belgian or a Norwegian company, congratulations, you made the right pick (choice).
What’s more, the majority of people worldwide are claiming that going forward they would either like to continue working from home with occasional trips to the office or work from home exclusively (without exceptions, only).
It’s not all about your personal preferences, it’s also about what kind of work you do. One study from 2012 showed that people who perform so-called “dull”, repetitive tasks find it easier to work at the office, while those who are involved in more creative tasks are more productive at home.
The English For IT team has been remote for over 2 years now, and it’s been a wonderful experience for the most part. Because everything these days is done remotely, including learning English, we have decided to share a few observations about remote work that could be helpful to you.
Observation #1 Be prepared for the honeymoon phase to be over
The honeymoon phase, metaphorically speaking, is a time when you’re in an initial stage of a relationship and everything feels exciting and new but once the novelty wears off (disappears) you’re gonna have to start dealing with the boring and routine aspects of living together.
Working from home may feel great at first — you don’t have that awful morning commute (a regular trip from home to the office), you can sleep in (wake up later), choose whether to shower or not, etc. But after a while, this freedom just doesn’t feel the same anymore, and you may start feeling a little depressed. So we’ve found it very important to get on top of the situation and set up a proper working environment and rules. For example, have a designated (serving a specific purpose) place for work and a different place for rest. It’s not a good idea to work sitting in bed. In fact, we would recommend avoiding doing anything work-related in your bedroom altogether (completely). It’s just so much easier to relax and unwind after a day of work when you know that your bedroom is a place of rest and relaxation.
It’s equally essential to plan out your day, including breaks. If you’ve been on a task for hours and seem to be making no progress, take a breather (take a quick break to recover), go for a walk or do some yoga — anything that will take your mind off things (think about something relaxing) .
Another thing you can do is establish working hours, say from 10 am to 7 pm. This will help you remain organized and clear-headed. When you’re under time crunch or just want to boost (improve) your productivity, try setting a deadline for each task you do. Let’s say you have 1 hour to do your next task and if you fail to do so (be unable to succeed), you either delegate it or set it aside till later. Don’t get overwhelmed if you start falling behind (not meeting deadlines), next time just set a deadline for a simpler task that is easier to accomplish.
Observation #2 Stay connected with your team
This is absolutely key (very important) to both your job performance and your mental well-being. For example, at our company, we have a work chat where we share company updates and little personal updates as well as the latest interesting movies we saw or feedback we got from our students, etc.
We also have bi-weekly (happening every two weeks) Friday meetings where we welcome newcomers and talk about our week, sometimes we turn these meetings into knowledge-sharing workshops and share information that can be useful or inspiring for all team members. It’s a great wrap-up to our week and a great way to kick off our weekend.
If you want to learn English with us and take your tech career to the next level, consider joining our 6-week online course. Remember that English opens doors to career opportunities for everyone around the world!