Work In The Time Of Coronavirus: Here's How You Can Do Your Job From Home (Like A Pro)

Whether you're a novice or an expert at working from home, here's what you need to do to stay on top of things.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You're reading Entrepreneur Middle East, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

With the rise of confirmed coronavirus cases, several companies around the world have rolled out a mandatory work-from-home policy. From Google to Microsoft to Shell and Unilever, companies all over the UK to the US, Japan to South Korea, and most recently the Middle East, everyone is taking extreme precautionary measures amid the spread of Covid-19. The good news is, however, shifting to a home-office does not mean compromising your job tasks. Thanks to the abundance of communication apps like Slack, Zoom, Quip, and Hive, working from home and communicating clearly with your boss and co-workers is now easier than ever. Whether you're a novice or an expert at working from home, here's what you need to do to stay on top of things.


1. TREAT WORKING FROM HOME LIKE A REAL JOB The number one problem remote workers face is confusing their presence at home with slacking or resting. While you don't necessarily need to dress up in a suit to work from your living room, taking your usual morning shower and breakfast can help you kickstart the day.

2. SET UP A HOME OFFICE: Because let's be realistic, working from home, in your PJs, with the laptop in bed, will most definitely mean snoozing off for a couple of hours. Create a corner for you to be undistracted and in official work-mode. Make sure this corner has everything you need from a power outlet to a comfortable chair and a well-positioned desk.

3. DOUBLE UP ON COMMUNICATION: Working from home requires you to be over communicative. Having a clear set of expectations and a solid communication strategy between you and your boss/ co-workers is the key to mastering remote work. Chat apps like Slack or video conferencing apps like Zoom and Quip are great tools to help you interact with colleagues and make you feel less isolated at home.

4. MANAGE YOUR TIME: Sometimes working from home means staying for hours on your computer replying to emails, long after your 9-5. Set a schedule, with an hour lunch break, and make sure you log off when it's time to "leave" work.

5. KEEP A POSITIVE VIBE: While this might sound like a fun opportunity for most people, working from home can be pretty isolating. Last year, a study of 2,500 remote workers by online brand development agency, Buffer, found that loneliness was the second-most reported challenge experienced by 19% of respondents. Loneliness can make people feel less motivated and less productive. By keeping your spirits up, listening to music, performing desk-exercises, and interacting with colleagues, this confinement won't be so excruciating.

Related: Working From Home As Senior Management: The Good (And Bad) News