COVID-19 | Is it time to join the overnight movement of remote teams?

The biggest conversation around the world at the moment is all about COVID-19, Corona Virus. Savvy businesses around the world are harnessing technology and taking grand measures to ensure the seamless flow of their operations. 

Those industries and businesses in a position to be able to make the switch may have already done so or are in the process of doing so. Companies like Google, Slack, Zoom, and Microsoft have come on board offering some of their premium paid project management tools for free. In order to assist businesses and schools are able to stay connected. 

The Future is Now 

Obviously this is not something that will be able to suit every business or employee due to the nature of their jobs. But for those who can, it will be life-changing in so many positive ways you might not want to go back to the way it was before. 

Here at Pixel & Ink, we are not lone rangers, we have always worked remotely very successfully with our team, industry partners and clients. And despite what people may think, it is not all pajamas, dressing gowns and Netflix binges between a little bit of work. Okay fine, there is a little bit of it….But we wouldn’t have it any other way. 

Technology has afforded us an abundance of communications options that can manage just about any type of information sharing on the go. Things like proofing work, writing emails, website checks, information and content sharing can all be done easily on a mobile phone. So if you have 

a sick child or need to take someone to the dentist, your whole working life doesn’t come to a standstill you just manage everything on the go. Enabling us to run teams, projects, and families mostly seamlessly without skipping a beat.

Digital Nomads 

Remote teams are not a concept of the future, Digital Nomads have long roamed the earth. You will have seen them in your local coffee shop armed with earphones, a mobile phone, a laptop, and other devices. Wide-eyed and frantically scanning the room for all of the plug points, charging space, the fastest WiFi and bottomless coffee on planet earth. They might look a bit scruffy, totally exhausted and equally immersed in what they are doing. These intrepid entrepreneurs of the travel world are running empires from their coffee shop space, with more stamps in their passport than most other mortals.

e-Residency 

e-Residency is now even a thing. Estonia pioneered the digital nomad visa going as far as to offer e-Residency too all kinds of freelancers, digital entrepreneurs, and nomads. Nomadic communities are thriving and growing at exponential rates. More and more countries are coming to the party and starting to offer Digital Nomads visas

Today with so many travel restrictions, Digital Nomads are just staying put and getting on with it. Their business resumes as usual. And so should ours.

How to Make it Work for You 

Most businesses run some part of their operations online, so if your industry or role is able to, it could be time to prepare to join the Work from Home (WFH) movement. You may have kids at home while you are trying to transition to the whole remote team thing and it could feel a bit surreal. Here are some tips to get you through.

  1. Communication is KEY to making the WFH set up a success. Set up a simple coms channel that works for everyone and review it. If a channel you are using isn’t working, try something else until you get it right.

  2. Schedule your day. Just because you are at home doesn’t mean the workday schedule should fall away. Create a routine for your day and lock in regular meeting times daily, weekly or whatever works for everyone. If you have kids at home be realistic about the blocks of time you can manage and communicate to your team about what you need.

  3. Don’t work in bed. Unless you are sick or injured we don’t recommend that you take up a post under club duvet. Your cat might love you but it will be very hard to be productive and bad habits form very quickly. Get up at the same time every day and go to your “office” even if it is the dining room table.

  4.  Pajamas are not workwear. Part of being at work is dressing for work. Even if you change into sweat pants and a comfortable t-shirt, it mustn’t be pajamas. Tip: Wake up and change into your gym clothes so it will force you to leave the house after work and do some exercise.

  5. Support each other. It can be lonely working at home and unless you are an introvert that has been waiting for a moment like this forever, you may have team members that need the extra check-in. Communication is essential in making sure everyone has the support they need.

  6.  Embrace the possibilities. Instead of feeling inconvenienced, scared or anxious, embrace the possibilities that a WFH opportunity provides. Less commuting means more time with your family. Need a break to stretch your legs? Do a load of washing and free up time you spend doing household chores on the weekend. Save money from those takeaway coffees and meals that eat into your budget. Free yourself from office distractions and find out just how productive you are.

Chat to your team, employees, and clients and find out if they would be open to testing a WFH arrangement and you may be surprised as to how open everybody is. This could be the step you have been waiting for but have been too scared to take or something you have wanted to trial for a while. We are all being catapulted into a brand new way of working, for those who didn’t work like this before and it is going to be revolutionary.

Lets get ready to rock and roll!

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