Over the course of the last 3 months, I have spent a large majority of my time listening. Listening to colleagues, peers and friends all describing their current working patterns, issues they’re facing and also achievements that they have made and I wanted to summarise it all in one post.
We can achieve more than we think
One of the concerns that I heard at the start of the year was the concern that working remotely would hinder cooperation or the ability of teams to be able to work effectively. I have seen first hand the great work that has been accomplished by teams but also how innovatively people are now looking to work and collaborate. Previously, you would have people in one room. Now, we’re working globally and being able to create extraordinary value in a similar amount of time.
Working remotely doesn’t mean working alone
Despite being in different locations, I am seeing a development and improvement in the way that we are collaborating. Not only as colleagues but with peers and friends. Online quizzes, family events are still bringing people together. As an expat, this makes me so happy to be able to connect with my family in a much easier way.
Appreciation for your team and colleagues can start small and grow
Recently, I was sent a voucher for a lunch for 2 people from work. In the same week, I also received a postcard congratulating me on a recent conference that I presented at. I’ve also sent cards and messages to friends and the personal touch of being able to reach out to someone to say hello has really meant the world to our relationship.
Attitudes are shifting
At the start of this year, working from home was something of a niche. Since the pandemic began, there has been a massive rise in the number of people working from home and the attitude towards Home working as changed. Germany is now making remote working part of law, Microsoft has said that employees can work from home permanently and Siemens was one of the first companies to come out and say that from now on, all employees in all countries can work a minimum of 3 days a week from home moving forward.
Some things do take time
There is no doubt, that you need to communicate more whilst being remote. This can cause additional challenges that you need to take into consideration and you may need to allow more time to be able to deliver on objectives and requirements. To mitigate this, you can look at how your communicating and what tools you’re using to collaborate with your team to try and make sure that you’re using the right tools for the job!
Winter is coming
In the Northern Hemisphere, the clocks have changed and winter is most definitely coming. The autumn colours are on the trees and this means that the amount of daylight that we’re having is going to decrease in the coming months. I have been pushing my team to get out during the day and making the most of daylight hours. Fresh air and a short walk can really make a dramatic difference to your productivity for a day.
Mental health remains a concern among many
Overworked, stressed and tired. You may not have taken your normal holiday because of restrictions or you may have additional stresses that are currently in your life as a result of the lockdown. I encourage all of my team, peers and friends to not take their mental health for granted. In the past month, two peers of mine are close to a burnout due to the increasing workload and not taking any breaks since March. I am currently coaching and working with two people who are struggling to manage their work/life balance and their effectiveness at work.
What are you seeing in your current projects and teams?