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The top 10 DOs and DON’Ts of working from home

To help ensure that drinks industry professionals working from home are as productive as we can be...

We know that during these times of uncertainty there are many drinks industry professionals who are now working from home. Not everyone’s used to this set-up, so we’ve compiled a list of DOs and DON’Ts to make sure you get the most out of the working day, and help keep our great industry functioning as best we can.

DOs

1.       Have a designated work space

Just as you have a desk in an office or a table in a bar, café or hotel lobby, home should be no different. A home office is easy to set up, even at your kitchen table.  Just ensure you have a strong chair to support your back, plenty of space free from any distractions, some power sockets nearby, and maybe even a nice view, and you are sorted! Having one area that you come to and work in will help you stay focused and separate your work life from home life. And as long as you don’t load the kitchen table down too much, you can even tidy it all away at the end of the working day.

2.       Keep a strict routine

Working from home may provide you with a new-found freedom, but this shouldn’t apply to your working hours. It requires discipline, but having a strict log-in and log-off time will help you differentiate between the working day and personal life – you no longer have a commute to help make the distinction. On that note, what are you going to do with the extra time you have now that you’re not travelling? What about...

3.       Take regular breaks – even go outside!

While being strict with yourself is important, the reality is that in the workplace you normally are not working 100% of the time. Don’t forget all the breaks for coffee, chatting to colleagues at the water cooler, or even walking around to have a break from your screen.

Working from home should be no different, especially as you are spending so much time within those four walls. Never underestimate the power of fresh air – it is important to make use of any balcony or garden space you have, and even going for a short walk around the block can be the key to a productive working day.

4.       Keep in contact with your team

It can be lonely working at home, so make sure that you stay connected by having regular contact with your team. Whether it is a 5 minute catch-up call, a full-on Zoom meeting or even a virtual end-of-day happy hour, human contact is important, and helps remind us that we are all in this together.

5.       Stay active

We know that lunchtime fitness classes are not practical at the moment, but there are many ways you can keep active during your breaks while practicing social distancing. An online fitness tutorial, a lunchtime walk or run, or even some quick stretches could help lift your mood, prevent you from becoming lethargic, and help you focus and keep your attention on the tasks in hand.

Down Dog App

The Body Coach TV

Fiit

Nike Training Club App

Pocket Yoga App

 

DON’Ts

1.       Work in bed or in your pyjamas

As much as it may be seen as a novelty to not have to actually go to a workplace – and, in theory, be able to do your job without leaving your bed all day, this isn’t at all healthy. It is important to keep your bed and bedroom as a sanctuary for sleep and rest after a long day, and not use the space for work. This all goes to helping maintain a good work/life balance.

The same goes for working in your pyjamas too. The psychological factor of getting up, showering getting dressed and eating breakfast will motivate you and ensure your working day stays productive. Plus, you’ll be ready for any unplanned video calls that may come in!

 

2.       Wake up 5 minutes before your working day starts

A huge advantage of working from home is that your commute is now effectively non- existent. We know that time in bed is precious, and you will no doubt have much more of this now you are working from home. However, your body needs time to adjust and prepare for the day ahead, so use the new found time to ensure you are up and active, before you open that laptop.

3.       Work in complete silence

While it is good to steer clear of distractions, noone really works in complete silence, do they? Kill the school-exam-hall-vibes by having some background noise, whether that’s listening to music, or even listening to a motivational podcast. It’s time to take advantage of there being noone about to judge your musical taste or singing voice!

4.       Sporadically do household chores

It is best to mirror the working day as best you can while working from home. While it can certainly be tempting to take advantage of the situation and get your list of chores done, it is best to steer clear of any such distractions.

Why not schedule a specific time for these, such as during breaks? It can divide the day up nicely and help provide a good balance – breaks are important as they prevent you from burning out.

5.       Let your notifications run wild

While it is important to stay connected with your colleagues, during the working day it is important to be strict with yourself and limit personal communication, especially when you are relying on your phone and laptop as a primary connection to the outside world. An easy way to do this is to turn off any notifications for personal social media or messenger apps, so that pop-ups won’t distract you.

This works both ways though – while on your lunch break or after the working day has finished, ensure that you are signed out from any work accounts so you can disconnect appropriately and enjoy your free time.

 

Not all of these pointers will work for or apply to everyone, but they’re a great starting point to focus the mind and ensure that drinks industry professionals working from home are as productive as we can be. Let’s help each other through these uncertain times, and come back even stronger.

We are #BetterTogether