Video conferencing, workspace design and other WFH Tips

Many TS Banking Group employees have been working from home for about a month due to the COVID-19 outbreak. We have all seen drastic change in our lives but eventually, we adapt. One TS Banking Group’s core values is the word ‘agile’ so we asked our employees for their top tips on how to successfully work from home (WFH) to share on today’s blog.

Keep your routine
Try to follow the same morning routine that you had before you started working from home. Get yourself out of bed on time, style your hair and put on real pants. Yes, as hard and as easy as it sounds, it helps with productivity. Moreover, any mental boost is always a good thing. 

Turn on the video camera
Regardless of your WFH appearance (see above), it still good to show up physically, especially when people are needing emotional and a personal connection now more than ever. Even if you are sporting your alma mater sweatshirt and topknot bun, people still value face-to-face interaction. Now is a time and place where people can truly relate with one another and be a little vulnerable, in a good way.

Find tools to help
Recommended tools that help make WFH life a little easier include ear buds, head phones or air pods for phone and video calls. Using head phones benefits you and the person on the other end of the call because there is less distracting background noise. Also, hard-wiring your internet vs. using wifi can help improve your speed. Its also not a bad idea to upgrade your internet speed through your provider, even if just temporarily, especially when you have multiple people working from home on video calls.

Get outside and move your body
Take a 15-minute stretch to walk around the yard, take the dog out or, for those that live in the country, check your mailbox. The new change in scenery can serve as your coffee/break room stretch that you would have normally had in the office. Many of our employees have expressed how much exercise and being outdoors has boosted their mood and energy levels. Plus, everyone needs a dose of fresh air to reset and recharge.

Use time blocks
For those with their children home due to school or daycare closures, life has sure felt a little fuller. Setting up a routine is key and helps with the juggle of schooling at home and working at home. Try portioning work into smaller sections. Carve out 30-45 minutes to devote to one project, then switch modes to 15-30 minutes for a school lesson, video or activity. Taking advantage of quiet/nap time and evening hours can be a good option for larger projects that take more time.

Have a designated space
Prior to COVID-19 you might have camped out on the couch or kitchen table to do after hours office work. But having a carved-out space for you and all your family members helps set some boundaries between work and life. Those who love to work, work, work have less reasons to stop working at the end of the day so make sure to unplug. Also, design your workspace. Grab your bedroom lamp, use a good office chair and make other changes to give yourself a comfortable work space.

Keep lines open
Continue to be clear and over-communicate. Be disciplined to reach out to people and consider picking up the phone instead of sending an email, or schedule a video call when appropriate. Now more than ever, your coworkers, friends and family need to hear from you.

Let it go
If you are a person who can’t sleep with dirty dishes in the sink, it’s ok to let things go during this time. If your house does not look Instagram worthy - know there are hundreds more people just like you. It will get done, maybe just not the way it has in the past.

We’re in This Together
Aside from a zoom meeting to connect with one another, try to find new and creative ways to brighten people’s days. Whether that is sending a quick brain teaser, tagging them in an inspirational Instagram post or designating Fridays as “wear red day”, the tiniest little acts of silliness or inspiration can let people know you’re all in this together and supporting one another.

You are given the strength, skills and intuition you need right now in order to get the next best step during this uncertain time. Trust your instincts and extend some grace to you and others – you are doing your best and we will get through this!

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