Our top tools and tips for WFH (Working From Home)
Like us, in the current COVID-19 climate, many businesses are adjusting to a working from home set up. As a digital agency, we are fortunately well placed to deal with this kind of change. By taking advantage of remote software tools, fast internet and affordable devices, we are able to continue working seamlessly on projects and daily tasks, whilst remaining in close contact as a team and with our clients. Read on for some insider tips.
Tips from the Dirty Martini team:
Lauren, Digital Marketing Exec
Structure your day like you would in the office – stick to your usual 10.30am coffee (and cake) routine and as tempting as it may be, try not to spend all day in your PJs… Get dressed and go for a walk or run around the block or in a local park where social distancing is possible. I do this before I start work to get in as much Vit D as I can! If you can’t get out, try following along with a yoga/workout video – there’s loads online which you can access for free. Oh, and surround yourself with plants, it’s good for the soul.
Luke, Digital Marketing Exec
For many of us it’s going to get pretty lonely working from home, I overcome this by selecting my favourite music to play throughout the day. Having familiar voices filling the room throughout the day helps to boost my mood, productivity and helps me feel less lonely; there’s no shame in a bit of Taylor Swift. As an extra, when I take my lunch break I make sure to ring my Nan, whilst seeing how she is getting on being stuck at home, it also gives me a chance to speak to someone and break the solitude feeling working from home can create.
Imogen, Graphic Designer
Although watching the news at the moment is super important, it can sometimes be full of doom and gloom, which is why I am so excited that I’ve discovered ‘The Happy Newspaper’, a quarterly newspaper full of only happy news, you can also follow them on social media for frequent happy updates. Don’t forget, there are still great things going on in the world.
Max, Web Developer
If possible, set up a ‘professional’ working space (not on your sofa, that’s a dangerous trap) where you can sit at a desk and mimic your office space as much as you can, this helped me separate my ‘work’ from my ‘home’. One of my favourite things about working in the office is being around people, so having the radio or a podcast playing really lifts my spirits and feels like I’m getting that human interaction which I’m sure many of us are missing.
Chloe, Social Media Exec
Set yourself a new routine that’s going to really boost your drive in the morning. Perhaps over the years you’ve fallen victim to that ‘extra 5 minutes’ in bed and have always had to have breakfast on the go, or find yourself spending most of your days commuting that you’ve never had a chance to enjoy the daylight hours. Spend your ‘commuting’ time making your favourite breakfast (even if it’s just jam on toast), pick up that instrument that’s been sitting in your corner for how many years, or start learning a new language ready for your next trip.
Working remotely, we have lost the luxury of body language, making communication absolutely key to the smooth running on the business. If anything, overcommunicate – write and speak much more than you usually would to avoid something important being missed. Fortunately, there are some great apps out there created for this purpose and allow us to work together efficiently without being in the same room.
WFH tools checklist
Part of what enables us to work from home so efficiently and effectively is the array of apps and tools on-hand to help remove distance as a barrier between our team and encourage collaboration. Finding the right tools to keep you and your team connected is crucial for staying productive, and more importantly, for keeping operations and projects running smoothly. We spend our days in and out of a whole range of tools including Gmail, Google Docs, Monday.com and (our new favourite,) Discord. Together, they allow us to work together without being in the same room. Here’s the low-down on some of our favourites:
Google’s business package has everything you need for successful company collaboration – Gmail, Docs, Drive, Calendar – for us, not only is invaluable for WFH, it’s an essential part of agency life.
Remote work is just as structured as the traditional office work space thanks to Monday.com. Set expectations and deadlines, centralise all communication within the context of workflows and projects and say goodbye to endless email chains. We like Monday.com because we can continue to collaborate, manage and track work in one- easy-to-use platform, wherever we are.
Possibly our new favourite thing ever, enter Discord. This app has been a revelation for us from day 1 of WFH (and it’s free!). Usually associated with gamers, it’s voice, video and text chat capabilities make it the perfect tool for recreating our usual open-plan office environment. We are able to easily check in with each other and remind us how our work is contributing to the big picture.
We hope you’re finding your rhythm with WFH as we all adjust to new circumstances. If you have any questions or if there’s anything you think we can do to help, please reach out. In the meantime, hang in there and stay safe!