The New Normal: Tips and Best Practice for continuing to Work from Home post-COVID 19


As the COVID-19 crisis continues around the world, business leaders are busy devising ways for their operations to work safely in the future, particularly in an environment where social distancing may need to be maintained for the longer term. Inevitably, many more jobs in Hong Kong will be based at home, on a permanent or part-time, more flexible basis. So how can home-working employees adjust to life without a collective office in the 'new normal'?


Here are some tips to make home-based jobs in Hong Kong more productive and more satisfying overall during this adjustment period.

 

1. Create a proper working desk space

If you've been working at home during the quarantine period, you have probably become used to taking your laptop to any available internal space. But for the longer term, you'll find it beneficial to carve out a more permanent desk arrangement. Invest in a laptop desk and office chair, or if you don't have space for this in your home, at least find a table which allows you to work comfortably and set up a storage arrangement for your office materials. This way, you can unpack, set your space up, and begin working in a productive way from the start.


2. Use productivity apps and hacks

When you work from home, it's all too easy to look for distractions, whether that's in the form of news, social media, or online shopping. Use productivity apps that prevent you from doing this and which limit your time on entertainment sites. Schedule your day in the same way that you would in the office. Start the day with your hardest tasks and don't become sucked into emails from other people. Work on something important and meaningful that helps to achieve your objectives, while your energy is highest. Save emails and admin for later in the day when your energy naturally dips.

 

3. Take a break

One benefit of home-based jobs in Hong Kong is that you can use your time more freely. So schedule time away from your screen. Have a mid-morning coffee break and allow yourself a lunch away from the screen. Go out for a walk. Schedule a social conference call with a teammate so you can discuss work and feel that sense of camaraderie. If possible, arrange to spend time physically in the office or with your teammates now and again, so that you still have the benefits of being together physically, as well as the flexible benefits that come with being a homeworker.


4. Act as though you are in the office

Don't make the mistake of working in your pajamas or you'll feel unprofessional and unmotivated. Dress in comfortable clothing by all means, but keep it smart and clean. Take the shower, do your hair, get on a conference call so that you look and feel good - and so your colleagues see you in the same way. Network too and spend time building your relationships. You can do a lot via phone and conference call, and then schedule to attend important events which are better in person, such as industry networking - once quarantine is lifted.


5. Be proactive

It is harder to communicate within a team when you work at home, so make the effort to be proactive. Attend team calls, pick up the phone, send that email. Check-in on your colleagues. Talk about ideas, projects, anecdotes. Share successes and challenges. The more open, honest, and proactive you can be in your communication, the more you and your team will enjoy working from home and reap the benefits of it.


Remember that it will take time to create a positive homeworking experience and to learn what works for you. Try new things, get feedback, and be patient. You will soon feel the benefits of your new flexible and technologically-enabled life that avoids the stressful commute!

 

 

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Silicon Valley Associates is ideally positioned to support the continual demand from tech companies and IT Departments looking to hire in Hong Kong, Asia, and Worldwide. Please let us know if you would further advise on the above topic or your hiring needs

 

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