Have you ever had an experience that has been seared into your memory? For example, I remember where I was on January 29, 1986, when the Challenger exploded, and when the World Trade Center was attacked on September 11, 2001.
During my life, I’ve also had several significant personal experiences seared into my memory. For instance, the day I was diagnosed with cancer. When I think about that day, it seems as if it was only yesterday my husband and I were sitting in my doctor’s office, waiting for my results.
Well, on March 13, 2020, my world changed again. As COVID-19 became a household word, Florida schools were closed for two weeks. My district was on spring break, and my husband and I were on vacation.
Unfortunately, we found ourselves spending our time in our resort room because everything was starting to shut down…
My first thoughts and hopes were we would be back to normal by March 30th. As I sat in our room, I began to realize the impact COVID-19 would have on my life. But little did I know this was only the beginning of my journey.
On March 17, 2020, the governor closed schools until April 15th. Overnight working remotely became my new way of work.
On April 18th, the decision was announced to continue distance learning until the end of the school year.
Previously, I have worked remotely during my career as a student, adjunct professor, and leadership consultant. Although working remotely is not a new experience for me, technology advances have dramatically changed the process. Now I’m working remotely on my “9 to 5” and this experience has been quite different.
For example, I’m spending most of my day on numerous video conferencing calls. In between video conference calls, I am either responding to emails or talking on my phone. Believe me, working remotely in this mode can be exasperating…
Over the past three months, I have adjusted my daily routines. During the first couple of weeks, I was spending hours sitting in my home office working. By the end of the day, I was exhausted and cranky!
To improve my disposition and health, I implemented a schedule which included taking breaks, standing, and exercising. When leading and coaching my team, I always start and end by checking on their emotional well-being.
COVID-19 and the shut-down forced me to reflect on my priorities. I miss the days when I could walk down the hall and chat with my colleagues. I long for the opportunity to hug a friend and to attend worship service at our church.
Yes, our world has changed. While the way we work has changed, it has also allowed us to grow. During this challenging time, I have added numerous tools to my toolbox, and I’m proud to say working remotely has helped me grow as a leader.
Like me, you may be a professional who usually works in the company office every day who suddenly found themself working from home. Or, maybe you’re an unemployed job seeker working from home who would like to be more effective in conducting your search. You may be a student unexpectedly taking all of your classes using distance learning methodologies and technology platforms.
Whatever your situation, I’d like to share lessons I’ve learned working remotely which you may find beneficial.
Here are 10 successes strategies I have used while working remotely:
- Dedicate a workspace to do your work!
- Create a comfortable environment to work in.
- Set clear boundaries for those around you.
- Keep a consistent routine.
- Stay connected with colleagues, friends, and family.
- Take breaks regularly.
- Make your availability known.
- Share your progress with others.
- Be responsive to calls, emails, and other communications, not social media!
- Ask for feedback from those involved in your work, job search, or educational endeavors.
Remote work has increased significantly during the pandemic. As states reopen, it will continue to increase as part of the “new normal.”
“Challenges are gifts that force us to search for a new center of gravity. Don’t fight them. Just find a new way to stand.”Oprah Winfrey
If you haven’t quite mastered remote work yet; 1) try these 10 success strategies, 2) click HERE to assess your remote work environment, and 3) put into practice what you’ve learned.
In times of crisis, you can improve.
This guest post was originally published on kimdmoore.com by Dr. Kim Moore, #YourLeadershipGuide, Crossroads Career Volunteer, DISC Consultant, and certified coach, speaker, and trainer with The John Maxwell Team. Dr. Moore guides aspiring leaders to lead with confidence, emerging leaders to expand their influence, and accomplished leaders to achieve significance!