Companies have asked their employees to work from home amid the corona virus scare. Earlier, a few IT companies had introduced this method. However, now, it has been adopted even in some government sectors as well. Though there may be many difficulties and limitations to work from home, the positive side of it is that at least you have a job. It is wise to do the jobs efficiently with the limited resources of a domestic space. Note these five tips to make your ‘work from home’ phase as effective and comfortable as possible.
If possible, try to turn a room in the house into your personal office space. You could make a few additional arrangements as well to make it look more ‘professional’. A desk top calendar, writing pad, sticky notes, pen stand, a table and a comfortable revolving chair that gives good support to the back are some of the essentials. You could sit on a bean bag if you are working for just 2 -3 hours a day. But it would be difficult if you have longer working hours. A good quality office table and a chair are good investments if you are someone who works from home for more than a week.
Good electric and internet connections
A high speed internet connection is very essential, especially for IT professionals to work from home. Similarly, undisrupted electric connection too is important. The Kerala Chief Minister had announced that power cuts would be avoided to aid the IT professional who are working from home. Electricity and internet speed are vital especially if you are working for a foreign company or client. Most of the times, the foreigners have no great opinions about the infrastructure facilities of the third world countries. For instance, an unexpected power cut while corresponding with the client via video call is definitely not going to be impressive. This is the time when you could change these attitudes by submitting high quality works and assignments. Besides a broadband connection, be equipped with a 4G data dongle as well. An inverter that can back up power for up to 3 -4 hours too is essential while working from home in Kerala.
Do you need a separate office?
It is better if you have a separate office room in your house or flat. Unused spaces or store rooms could be cleaned and turned into office spaces. If you don’t have such luxuries, you could turn your living room, dining hall or even your bedroom into a temporary office. However, you must instruct your family members that a professional decorum should be maintained at these spaces during the working hours.
Same office room for husband and wife?
Many couples who work from home wonder whether they need to share the same office space. A few tabloids in the UK have predicted that there would be a baby boom once the lock down is lifted. Meanwhile, some others say that the number of divorce cases would soar. So, it is up to the couples to decide whether they need to share an office space based on the size of their accommodation facilities and the nature of their relationship.
Office and family
You must be someone who leaves for work early in the morning and returns late at night. So, your family members must be thrilled to have you at home during the lockdown period. However, this must be quite challenging for some people, especially in India where extended families live under the same roof. Women who have been working outside must find this situation particularly difficult and stressful. You parents, parents in law, children and husband may come to you if they need something. Or you may feel guilty watching your aged mother in law toiling in the kitchen while you are sitting away with a lap top. So, it is important to talk to them and make them understand that you are not on leave and that you would be working full time during the office hours. Meanwhile, you could spend some time with the family members or even help them in the chores as you are saving the time that took you to travel to the office and back. Do not encourage hosting guests during your work hours.
(Information courtesy: Muralee Thummarukudy)