Many organizations are currently closing their offices and asking people to work from home, potentially for several weeks or months.
Whilst many of us have experienced occasional days of working from home, it is very different doing this 5 days per week for an extended period.
There has usually been little time to prepare people for this environment and it does require some changes in ways of working.
We have produced some free short videos to support people new to working from home in the current crisis
You are free to link to or download these videos and use them without restriction with your colleagues.
In the initial stages of working from home people need support in how to set up their working spaces and ensuring they have the infrastructure available.
Most of us have the tools available to enable remote collaboration. The challenge is more about adapting our routines and ways of working to be effective.
Research shows that people who work from home normally tend to be more productive and it gives us the flexibility we need to cope with challenging times and changing family circumstances. However in these exceptional circumstances we should not expect this to be true. People will be distracted and have other priorities around family, health and community, we need to allow for this.
Individuals working from home are often concerned about maintaining a sense of community and team spirit with their colleagues.
They also need to overcome “out of sight out of mind“ and stay visible to colleagues when working remotely
Working remotely also requires a step up in the use of virtual meeting technologies to create more engaging and participative communication.
Managers leading people who are working from home are often concerned about how they exercise control and monitor progress, and this can lead us into a negative spiral of micromanagement. Managers need to be able to build trust remotely and find new ways to coach and develop their people.