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For those of you working from home

redwood66

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 22, 2012
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What are your thoughts about it? Is it the first time you've done it? This article suggests the crisis might change things forever. Is that a good thing or bad? I would have loved to work from home but sadly could not. LOL.

It may be difficult to decide if you like it if you have kids at home right now, especially with all the hilarious memes about it. But would you like it if everything else was normal?


https://thefederalist.com/2020/03/2...ail&utm_term=0_cfcb868ceb-f5d078ddcf-83959769


The coronavirus outbreak is disrupting nearly every facet of American life. Many of these changes are temporary and will be forgotten as soon as the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic subsides — but not all.

Changes rippling through daily life right now will present, for the first time, an alternative to the normal way of doing things, and some will be improvements. One bright spot in this medical and economic catastrophe is that millions of workers will find that working from home is not only possible, but preferable. The effects of that will be considerable...
 

Dee*Jay

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Mar 26, 2006
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Red, the job I've had for the past 7 years involved going into the office on the three days a week that I worked. I actually enjoyed that, and had everything I needed at my fingertips in my office, plus my assistant was right outside my door. My current "Executive Office" is currently the dining room at TR's. I have full computer access, but I obviously don't have access to all my paper -- of which I'm finding I apparently rely on a lot to do my job more easily!

My boss is getting SLAMMED right now, and in turn is filtering things down to me that he would normally do myself. These are often things I have no (or at least little) idea of how to get accomplished to it results in a whole lot of back and forth, which is a real *joy* for both of us, let me tell you! He's also ON 24/7... and expects the same of us. I'm being totally sympathetic to the pressure he's under right now and doing everything I can to help him and also do my job to the best of my ability under these circumstances, but I gotta tell you, ever time I see his name pop up as the sender of an email or on my caller ID I get a sense of dread. Ugh.

Frankly, I can't WAIT to go back to the office! (Never though I'd say that, ha ha!)

Have I answered any of your questions or merely b!tched? If the latter, I apologize! Maybe this would have been a nicer post of I'd had a cocktail or two first, but I'm adhering strictly to the "after 5 o'clock only" rule... as much as I'd love a breakfast-tini most days!

Hope you and the hubs and the boys are well Red! Was looking forward to possibly meeting you at the Idaho GTG this year, but let's hope for next year!
 

redwood66

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 22, 2012
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@Dee*Jay LOLOL. Maybe this isn't the perfect time to decide if you love it or hate it. I know some of our experienced work from homers have dedicated spaces for their work. The workload being so high might not reflect what it could be. Then there are those who like a separation of work/home and the social aspect of it.

Thanks so much for your thoughts and you keep my spirits up. Hopefully next year at Wink's.
 

dk168

Ideal_Rock
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Jul 7, 2013
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5,646
I have been working part time from home since September 2019, with the odd trips to visit the client's HQ and vendors for on-site visits/audits etc...

My line of work is mainly office based, and a lot of work can be done remotely. Therefore, the restriction to travel and to stay at home does not impact me that much.

I live on my own with just the pets for company for a number of years, and enjoy being alone at home. I cannot stand the idea of sharing my living space with another person. Therefore, solitude at home does not bother me.

I just miss the freedom to go out and about, and the face to face social interactions with other people.

DK :))
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Apr 22, 2004
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I set a specific space to work from home, a huge table so I can set my laptop and double monitors. I have boxes of paperwork I brought back and put them under the desk. I enjoy the alone time very much but this is coming from the perspective of an introvert. The only disadvantage right now is the extremely slow speed of the server, which is because everyone in my company is working from home. Perhaps under normal conditions, it wouldn't lag so badly. I can start late, take longer breaks and also work late to make up for any interruption or family needs. This is actually a positive right now since server speed is significantly increased late at night when everyone else isn't working.

Pros: flexible hours, less unnecessary meetings, as an introvert - less face to face interaction
Cons: must be disciplined about getting work done and a dedicated space is best to prevent interruption from family and pets.
 

bludiva

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 23, 2017
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I've been wfh at least one day a week for 10 yrs. for the last three years 75% at home.

this past 2 weeks 100% at home and my spouse is wfh and it's been an adjustment. no option to do soecufic meetings in person that would benefit from f2f interaction is tougher than i would have thought.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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My company is set up with MS Teams so we can all call and talk to each other at the same time and also text and share screens as we talk so it's like being f2f without actually being in the same room. I am currently maintaining and leading a weekly Thursday meeting online and we have a Teams every 2 days with the Director on updates regarding how the pandemic is affecting business and return to work.
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 17, 2008
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I've worked from home over 10 years.

1. A must have is a separate work space thats yours alone if you can. convert a closet, take over the bedroom, anything you can do to concentrate on work.

2. Have a specific schedule. I treat my workday as if I'm going to work. I get up, take the dog for a walk, come back home, shower, dress, then make breakfast. after I eat, I "go to work" and I keep to this schedule.

3. Some of us do work more when working from home because you can get in a groove. If you have a family, don't forget them and don't get too wrapped up in work.

4. Don't forget self care. Get outside, stretch, take your pet with you when possible. Most people will not have an erganomic setup at home, breaks will be necessary. Sunlight is necessary too. I let my team know when I'm away from my desk, when I'm taking a walk, or if I just need to go lay in the back yard and think. I encourage them to do the same (They're all over the country!) We use an Agile approach and do scrums every morning to square up for the day. I don't clock watch them, because I don't care what they do as long as the work gets done for the client.

5. Feed yourself but don't overeat (its easy to do)

6. Take your meals away from your desk. I don't always do this but I should more often. (Most of the time I'm sitting in a meeting have lunch on mute...lol)

7. At the end of the day, shut the machine down and close the "office door". You owe it to yourself not feel guilty about being done for the day.

8. Don't work sick. Just because you're at home, doesn't mean you should work through an illness. A minor cold is OK. Migraines, flu or worse? hell no. Take time to recover and be at your best.

9. Take time to talk to your co-workers. does your company have slack or skype? use it as your water cooler. You have to maintain the same relationships you had in the office.

10. Breathe. It'll be OK. This for now is the new normal. don't sweat the small stuff.
 

redwood66

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 22, 2012
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@Arcadian you have this down.

My workplace for the state has been ordered to work from home if they can. Since I am back only on a limited contract part time I will not be using a VPN but just off completely until this settles or June 30th when contract ends, whichever comes first. But others have started wfh today and it will be interesting to see how they handle it.

Thanks for the replies. I hope others will chime in as maybe it will be helpful to newbies.
 
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GliderPoss

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 25, 2008
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I can WFH and have done so for the odd day here & there in the past but usually don't for my current PA role.

This is my first week full time WFH and so far it's fine. :bigsmile: I live alone (not pets) so it's a bit quiet and lonely, I miss the fun office banter. I'm getting plenty of work done, only main challenge is IT (slow network, internet issues, Skype freezing etc) and I don't have a printer so cannot do that. At the moment I'm working on my dining table as I don't have a proper desk - seems ok for now but if this goes on for months I'll buy one & set up in the spare room instead.

Pros: Working in trackies & ugg boots, no makeup, making fresh hot homemade lunches!
Cons: Missing the connection with my colleagues, missing getting "dressed up" for work

I do think if this goes on for 6 months + it will change society and the way we choose to operate in the future. :think:
 

anne_h

Brilliant_Rock
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Jun 13, 2005
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1,004
Prior to the virus, I was working from home informally just a few days a month. Just on my laptop in my comfy chair, etc. My company had a program to work from home 100% (they would provide monitors, docking stations, etc), but I never signed up because I thought I preferred to work from the office.

Now, I'm working from home 100%. Aside from my kids being home all day due to school closures (stressful), I have found that I am able to maintain a structured day, including exercise and time to eat. I sort of like it!

I work for large multinational company, and I'm in a city that is not considered one of their core locations. So even when I was going into the office, I wasn't seeing that many people. All my main contacts were in other cities, so our interactions were always virtual.

All that to say... I think when this is over, I may just stay working from home full-time.

My issue in the short-term (aside from the kids, lol) is that I don't have a proper workspace or desk setup. I was able to get a 2nd monitor before my city locked down, but haven't looked for any other equipment since then. I also need an actual desk and ergonomic chair (Wayfair??). I'm currently at the dining room table, and getting stiff sometimes.

Anne

PS - Yes, I do think this event may change the perceptions around working from home going forward. IMO, hopefully in a good way. In terms of opening some peoples' minds that teams don't have to be co-located to be successful. If true, this may open more opportunities for more people.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Aug 14, 2009
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20,553
I normally travel a ton - so I was one week “on”, in office or on site, and one week “off” fully remote from home. I miss the face-to-face with my coworkers. There’s just nothing like dealing with people in-person - the best audio and video systems aren’t half as productive as getting together for an hour in conference room C, or having someone look over your shoulder as you scroll through error logs. The biggest screens aren’t half as fulfilling as sharing sushi or hitting the wine bar after a long week. We as a company are seeing, as expected, an overall drop in productivity.

All those ridiculous memes about extroverts and introverts... I detest gatherings of strangers but I always want my dearest - a group which includes some people I also call coworkers - near.
 
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missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Jun 8, 2008
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34,124
My DH can work from home much of the time so not that much has changed for him. Though he generally needs to get into the office every week he is able to stay away from the office for as long as is necessary. My concern is after this is over will business continue or will there be layoffs due to the pandemic crisis which has affected all aspects of life.
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 17, 2008
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@yssie I'm a pretty severe introvert. You'd never know it by talking to me on the phone or online...lol I've gotten good at faking it. And the few times a year I must do something in person...my goodness its DRAINING. None of the people even know I'd rather not talk to them in person...lol. I don't wear daily makeup but when I have to put on the show, I do, and wear suits, and heels... BLAHHHHHHHH!!!! hate that! My small circle of friends are amazing, I do miss seeing them and I worry about them as some of them are over 65. We have our girls night out online these days...lol

@anne_h I purchased my sit/stand desk from Ikea roughly about 2014. its been a savior for me. I did splurge on their higher end one but they do have some that are now cheaper (smaller).
https://www.ikea.com/us/en/search/products/?q=sit stand desk
If you don't have ikea near you def. look online for something similar (even the hand crank ones can be ideal!

I had this chair for many years https://www.amazon.com/Tempur-Pedic-TP7000-Office-Chair-Black/dp/B01E0YBCSK

its a great chair, supportive and good positions. wore it out after about 4 years and moved up to a custom Lifeform chair.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Apr 22, 2004
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37,377
All those ridiculous memes about extroverts and introverts
It's true for me though. I have to find time and (limited) space to "get away" from my family at home even though I love them and would trade my life for theirs without a second thought but I NEED my solitude desperately!
 

Tartansparkles

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 23, 2017
Messages
202
I've worked from home for ten years or so, when I do have to go into the office, which was once a week, I found it more of a faff and I was less productive because I was set up to be at home.

Like @Arcadian I have 'rules' one of which is to get dressed for work (I have work and non-work clothes).

The big thing I have noticed this week - all the folks who are new to working from home - are so scruffy when they turn up for video calls :).

I think it must be a mindset thing, for me being able to change out of work clothes, is a signal to myself that the work day is over.
 

redwood66

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 22, 2012
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@anne_h Does your company provide $ for a home office set up? Or maybe loaning of equipment like a chair from the office?

I'm pretty much an introvert and only like small gatherings with my close friends so I understand you @chrono.

I am hoping the positive of this virus is that more companies realize it could be a net benefit to allow wfh. The country does need more fiber infrastructure in smaller towns and cities to accommodate the net traffic though. Or this 5G thing?
 
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Maria D

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I asked my students this same question - do they prefer "remote" learning to going to school? I qualified it with, if we didn't have social distancing and they could still get together with their friends after school. They said they liked being able to do school from their bed in pajamas (although what most of them wear to class isn't far from pjs anyway) and liked having the lesson recorded so they could watch again if necessary. But - they missed being able to work together and get help in person.

Me - I hate it! I could easily get a job teaching h.s. math online all year, would never do it. I miss my classroom, the kids, and the learning environment that comes from personal interaction. Instead, I am inundated with emails asking me math questions that I then write out, take a pic, upload to computer before sending back by email. If I'm lucky the student comes back with a salient question, usually it's just "I don't get it" or no response at all. I'm doing online live sessions where no one but me says anything. I can't call on someone that I think may have a question or answer (which I always do in person) because I can't read their expressions. It really sucks. Did I mention I hate it? :lol:

I have worked from home before doing consulting for industry. That was worthwhile because it paid well and was only part-time. I made more then (mid 90s) than I make now and could get all my work done in a 15 hour week. I was a SAHM at the time so it was perfect for then, but temporary.
 

telephone89

Ideal_Rock
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I've always been able to WFH, but my boss preferred me to be in the office. Now, he knows we can do everything remotely!

To be honest, my ideal would be WFH most of the time, with the option to go into the office. The only issue I have right now, is that because schools are closed, many people who are "working" from home, aren't getting a lot of actual work done, because of their kids. Oh, and people are not respecting normal working hours. I had a conference call at 8pm one day! I get that it's "unprecedented" times, but c'mon.
 

Maria D

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@anne_h Does your company provide $ for a home office set up? Or maybe loaning of equipment like a chair from the office?

I'm pretty much an introvert and only like small gatherings with my close friends so I understand you @chrono.

I am hoping the positive of this virus is that more companies realize it could be a net benefit to allow wfh. The country does need more fiber infrastructure in smaller towns and cities to accommodate the net traffic though. Or this 5G thing?
I hope it helps rural areas get better internet infrastructure too, but I also hope it gets urban companies to start realizing that people can work productively from home a few days a week. In places like Boston you often can't get from point A to B in any reasonable amount of time. Getting cars off the road could save people's sanity and the environment.
 

redwood66

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@Maria D I'm not sure online learning for grade or high school is a very good idea. Kids need interaction with others to develop those skills. College would be fine but not younger ones.
 

Maria D

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I've always been able to WFH, but my boss preferred me to be in the office. Now, he knows we can do everything remotely!

To be honest, my ideal would be WFH most of the time, with the option to go into the office. The only issue I have right now, is that because schools are closed, many people who are "working" from home, aren't getting a lot of actual work done, because of their kids. Oh, and people are not respecting normal working hours. I had a conference call at 8pm one day! I get that it's "unprecedented" times, but c'mon.
Excellent point in bold. It incensed me when I was a SAHM to have people (mostly my brother) insist that I should get a WFH job when my daughter was still pre-school. Ever try to be productive with a two-year old around? Would you hire a daycare provider that had a side gig going on at the same time?
 

Maria D

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@Maria D I'm not sure online learning for grade or high school is a very good idea. Kids need interaction with others to develop those skills. College would be fine but not younger ones.
I agree completely. It's especially difficult with math and science.
 

telephone89

Ideal_Rock
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Excellent point in bold. It incensed me when I was a SAHM to have people (mostly my brother) insist that I should get a WFH job when my daughter was still pre-school. Ever try to be productive with a two-year old around? Would you hire a daycare provider that had a side gig going on at the same time?
Yeah, it's a really tough situation now, because in some provinces daycare is also closed, so what are parents to do? We are all trying to make it work the best we can, but its definitely not ideal!
 

redwood66

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I hope it helps rural areas get better internet infrastructure too, but I also hope it gets urban companies to start realizing that people can work productively from home a few days a week. In places like Boston you often can't get from point A to B in any reasonable amount of time. Getting cars off the road could save people's sanity and the environment.
You brought up something I was thinking about the other day. I wonder how commutes are now for those who have to go to work during lockdowns in the big cities with horrendous traffic? LA and SF come to mind. I've been stuck in traffic in the tunnel in Boston. WFH could be a huge plus for the environment too!
 

Bayek

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May 11, 2013
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I'm retired so I'm doing what i've done since I retired. Reading. walking, cooking etc.

My sons are WOFAing (IBM term for working from home).

My older son has always worked at home on Fridays for 2 years now and my younger son went into the office 3-4x a week for over year at this job. Both can get their job done, I couldn't have done that, I would have been distracted, I've seen my younger son work on a build on vacation, different world. I will say that my husband and I being together all day when we retired was very very difficult for the first year or so.. I wanted to clock him. But over the years we endured and now work together very well, we both had to adjust to each other's schedules. etc.
 

EllieTO

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I work in biotech project management, and we don't have a usual WFH policy (ok to do when needed, but not on a regular basis). Although I and my team can work from home because technically all we need is our computers, it's really really difficult having all our meetings and discussions remotely. Yes, we can turn on video and screen share, but productivity is not the same as if we were together in person. I'm in meetings an average of 4-5 hrs a day, ranging from 1-15 people, and they're highly collaborative, scientific, strategic, discussion, planning and decision-making meetings. I would say 90% of my team hates having to be WFH right now. I don't see major changes for us coming out of this.

Personally, I miss the in-person interactions. I'm also finding that I work so much, partly because it's a busy time and all of us are less efficient, and partly because I can't focus sufficiently to get a day's work done in 8-9 hours. I'm working 10-11 hr days with almost no breaks except to take my foster dog out, and find that I have LESS time to cook and work out than when I was driving into the office, working 8-9 hrs, then driving to the gym. It doesn't make sense, but it has been my reality.
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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You brought up something I was thinking about the other day. I wonder how commutes are now for those who have to go to work during lockdowns in the big cities with horrendous traffic? LA and SF come to mind. I've been stuck in traffic in the tunnel in Boston. WFH could be a huge plus for the environment too!
I think the environmental pollution has already decreased from the people that are now WFH and not commuting. Less cars on the road and many factories etc have been shut or slowed.



 
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