Since experience with remote workers is not commonplace for all companies, we compiled a list of best practices for you to consider in order to maximize both production and effectiveness. If properly executed, an office can also maintain an air of normalcy and connectivity. If you don’t currently have video conferencing capabilities, some free resources are listed below!
Tips for Creating In-Office Experiences – Virtually!
Act the Part! This means – act like you are going into the physical office. Wake up at the same time, drink your coffee, read or watch the news, dress like you are heading into the office (make up, shaving, showering – the whole normal experience!) before you start your business day – don’t try to slide it in mid-day, it WILL impact your mental productivity. Plus, you never know who may ask you to connect via video unexpectedly!
Keep Your In-office Routine! Keep the eyeball to eyeball connectivity by using video conferencing for EVERYTHING! Create a standing meeting for morning meetings (even if you normally don’t do them) to create a positive, motivating connection each morning. Set up an open video conference over the typical lunch break time to allow the team to catch up on weekend debriefs, the latest episodes of whatever is trending on TV, family health checks and whatever other water cooler chat will be missed. And don’t underestimate the power of video conferencing for deal-review calls, 1:1 meetings, team meetings or even impromptu – all can be done via video conference. Literally, nothing HAS to change workwise except for the place you are conducting business from.
Take a Break! Allow yourself a scheduled 15-minute break in the morning and the afternoon but keep yourself honest to your time. Productivity is best managed by keeping your office routine and schedule packed.
Practice First! Not everyone is tech savvy and working with video conferencing may take a few trials before it’s mastered. Set up your first meeting with the team for a non-critical event like a lunch break to work out the kinks.
Be Tolerant! Not everyone has a perfect set up for home office working. We may joke about “kitchen table” employees, but the kitchen MAY be the only option for some. For the time being, ask your team to try to ensure the background of wherever they are is as “neutral” and non-distracting as possible, wherever they are. Things to help productivity: natural light, comfortable chair, snag your mouse from the office to avoid carpel issues and if you have an extra monitor at home or at the workplace that you can borrow temporarily, do so! Noise canceling headphones will help minimize “at home” noises just as they do in the office.
Helping your Clients & Staff to Keep Rolling – Virtually!
Face to face meeting don’t have to be cancelled! If you use a VIOP phone service you generally can, offer to host “face to face” meetings for your staff & clients using your meetings app! If they are more comfortable hosting themselves (or you don’t have capacity to “Host”), suggest they try FreeConferenceCall.com to facilitate interview/meetings during the pandemic. https://www.freeconferencecall.com/online-meetings highlights the great FREE features they can use, such as up to 1,000 participants for audio, video, and screensharing. With a little setup, they can make sure each interviewer has what they need to hold an interview.
Slack is a great “chat” tool that can be implemented for free for teams of less than 250 and there are lots of training resources online.
Exceptional times call for exceptional levels of adaptation. Remember, all of your clients are experiencing the same level of disruption. Use the unique working environment as an opportunity to more deeply probe a client’s special challenges. We will share some of our networks best practices for working remotely as we try to understand how we can best help our clients to bring the best possible talent onboard as everyone gets ready to emerge from the economic storm and back into growth.