As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) spreads, more and more businesses are implementing work from home policies.
Are you ready to work from home?
To help you settle in to your new home “office,” we asked a few of our seasoned remote employees to come together on this webinar and share tips and tricks borne from their experiences switching to working from home.
The panelists included Misty Harding, Senior Learning Consultant, Cullen Angus, Custom Solutions Consultant, Monica Newell, Associate Instructional Designer, and Stephanie Ivec, Content Manager (that’s me!).
We also shared some ideas for converting instructor-led training (ILT) to online training.
One of the most popular topics during the webinar was ergonomics. Everyone wants to know how to create a more comfortable workspace at home.
Certainly, if you can expense it or want to spend the money yourself, there are tons of products that will make those 8 hours at your desk (dining table, couch…) more comfortable.
But as Misty said on the webinar, it’s really all about creating 90 degree angles.
- Don’t have an adjustable monitor? Stack your laptop on some books.
- Feet don’t reach the floor? Create a footrest with a box or more books.
- Dining chair killing your back? Fold up a towel or small blanket and put it behind your lower back. Find a spare pillow to sit on top of if your chair isn’t padded.
If you want to really go all in on ergonomics, I recommend this vertical mouse. It puts your wrist into a more neutral position and as an added bonus, you may derive a small amount of amusement from the fact that it looks like a shark fin. I also have a split ergonomic keyboard that greatly confuses people when they visit my house.
Work-Life Balance and Indicating You’re “At Work”
Headphones are very much the universal symbol for “don’t bother me.” Monica shared that while she does have a dedicated office, she also likes to occasionally move around her house and work from different spots. She keeps her earbuds in so that other members of her household know she’s still “at work” even when she’s in the living room or kitchen.
Misty and Cullen both have years of experience working from home WITH children in the house. This can definitely be a pro and a con. As Cullen shared, working from home has enabled him to spend much more time with his daughter and be there for her. Getting back the time of your commute is truly amazing!
On the flip side, many people find that they actually work MORE hours when they start working from home. It can be hard to draw boundaries between work time and home time when it’s all happening in the same place. Misty shared with attendees that she actually uses a timer. She tracks how much time she spends on each work task, as well as hitting pause to spend time with her toddler. This helps her ensure that she’s not shortchanging her employer or herself.
Maintaining a work-life balance, especially in such confusing and uncertain times is essential.
ILT to Online
Misty walked attendees through an example of a sexual harassment training that she used to give in person for organizations. The exercise involved the learners standing in different sections of the room depending on whether they thought a presented example was or wasn’t harassment. Afterward, the group would discuss why they stood where. Misty gave a couple different ideas of ways this exercise could still be effective online, for both synchonous and asynchronous training.
Watch the recording to hear her tips, and check out this blog article for more suggestions: A Simple Model for Converting ILT to Engaging eLearning.
At the very end of the webinar, we shared a couple free resources.
First, a free online training curriculum full of courses about how to be productive working from home, how to keep your team in the loop, and how stay healthy.
Get the courses here: Free Remote Work Training Courses
We also shared a bundle of templates and assets, like icons and cutout people. It’s everything you need to create a complete online training course—free.
Download now: Free Online Training Starter Pack
Watch the webinar recording now and learn how to telecommute like a rockstar: