What We Learned From Our First Week Working From Home
Having our routine flipped upside down hasn’t been easy by any means. Our team loves working together, huddling for a brainstorming session, making sure there’s always a fresh pot of coffee ready, and most importantly, keeping up with Rogue’s daily adventures.*
Personally, I was really starting to enjoy my daily walks to-and-from the office, with snow and freezing rain giving way to warmer days. But I understand why this is important, and that this new routine will come with its own set of challenges that we’ll all have to navigate.
Here’s how we’ve been doing it:
1. Morning check-ins on Zoom
We’ve started having our twice-a-week meetings every day. Not only is it a helpful way to make sure projects are on-track when you can’t just pop your head over your screen to ask, but it’s also genuinely nice to start your day off by seeing everyone’s faces. It helps us start the workday, and shake off that sleepy at-home feeling.
2. Overcommunicating on Slack
Our ‘Where Are You’ channel is where we let each other know when we need to step away to do things like have lunch or check-in on our family members. But, it’s also where we share if we’re feeling overwhelmed by the news and need a little break. It’s a good way to maintain transparency, and remind each other we’re affected by things in different ways.
3. Limiting news exposure
We’ve dedicated a Slack channel to COVID-19 news. Compiling information about this special situation in one place keeps other channels news-free, and helps those who need a break from the constant updates. If you’re not in the headspace to read about it, you can avoid the channel or mute it. What happens on the COVID channel, stays on the COVID channel. Oh and, It’s called ‘Down With The Sickness’, obviously.
4. Frequently updating timelines on Monday
Monday is a tool we’ve been using for a while now. It helps us manage projects and timelines, organize our content calendar, and even keep track of office cleaning duties. By making sure the dashboards are updated regularly, we can always check-in on the most recent status of projects, even in all the chaos or if someone needs to take a day off.
5. Learning a few things from Gen-Z
Memes. TikToks. Ridiculous Twitter threads. It’s good to laugh, especially at a time when everything seems bleak. The thing about most of the memes that have been going around is that, while they’re ridiculous, they also tend to be informative. We keep these circulating in our COVID-19 channel, along with pictures of pets, babies, and whatever content is good for the soul that day.
I keep thinking about how thankful I am that, as a society, we’ve already moved so many things to digital spaces. My local gym has been offering online workouts through a private Facebook group, my therapist’s office is moving appointments to a secure video platform, and my parents that live in the Middle East are able to message and video call me whenever they’d like.
At the same time, social isolating doesn’t mean you have to be locked up. A walk in the fresh air (at an appropriate distance from others and with a bottle of hand sanitizer) can make all the difference.
As we figure out our new normal, we’d love to know what you and your team have learned, and if there are any tips you can share. Reach out and tell us.
* sunbathing, licking the floor, refusing to be picked up, and hanging out in Design Land.
Sahar Firky is a Strategist at MediaStyle