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Remote Working: How Do You Continue Bringing Your A-Game? Working from home can be a big change if you haven't extensively done it before. But if you're mindful about your approach, you can be happy, productive and very successful.

By Ravindra Kelkar

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Today, no organization or individual is exempt from the side-effects of being stuck in a crisis that could come in various forms. For some nations this means frequent political or civil unrests, for some it's natural calamities like earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis and for some this also means unexpected electricity and power outages. On the other hand, there are global calamities like climate change or the current COVID-19 crisis that threatens to disrupt our fully functional processes. In these unforeseen circumstances, we are pushed to manage our businesses while balancing employee well-being and morale. This calls for a new set of processes that the C-suite and HR need to enable that don't compromise on performance delivery.

One of the major consequences of some of these disruptive forces is the need to work from home or remotely in order to safeguard employee health. In these situations, enterprises must ensure that they're giving their employees all the tools to do what they do best and continue providing value. Let's look at some of the ways in which enterprises and employees can make the best out of remote working situations.

Create a work schedule

Being a productive remote worker requires a certain degree of discipline to continue smashing targets. Working from home doesn't really have to be that different, especially when you have a schedule in place. The key is to find out what works best for you and how you can be productive. Collaborate with your team, create a task list and divide your day into small blocks. For example, if you feel least productive in the afternoon, schedule all your calls then. Similarly, all the time-sensitive tasks can be closed in the first few hours in the morning. If you usually feel worn out toward the fag end of the day, keep some fun and interesting projects for that time. Most importantly, take a stock of the tasks that you were able to complete and pending action items so that you can accordingly manage time the next day.

Leverage the right solutions

In general, the ways of working have been changing around the world. It is an increasingly dynamic activity that demands adaptability from a technology and a people standpoint, irrespective of location. Working remotely can be a challenge if your enterprise is not digitally transformed and if you don't have access to the tools that help you stay connected to your teams and colleagues. Particularly for global organizations, whose business depends on customer success and those that have geographically dispersed teams, it is crucial to have a suite of solutions as a part of the IT toolkit. Solutions like digital workspaces, virtual apps and desktops, hybrid cloud, collaboration solutions etc. can prove to be particularly helpful in aiding agility, flexibility and productivity while maintaining a layer of security. Such tools will not only help employees in collaborating effectively, but will also aid them in completing their daily tasks with ease.

Personal well-being

Remote work has been a trend for a considerable part of the taskforce, and many are already familiar with the effect this can have on mental well-being. For those who are accustomed to social interactions at the workplace, this could be a major shift especially with mandates like social distancing. The key is to find the right balance between your work-mode and home-mode. Speak to your manager and HR for guidance and support on how you can work from home without hampering your engagement and productivity. Make sure to also work closely with your IT team to perform tests on your network, bandwidth, access etc. so that you don't find yourself scrambling to get your tech working. Furthermore, continue having regular conversations with your colleagues with the tools you have at your disposal so that it feels like any other day at work.

Achieving long-term success

For a lot of individuals, working from home could be a temporary situation. But what if this becomes a long-term option? Here's how you can make a long-term commitment successful –

  • Commit and Deliver: If you want this arrangement to work for you, your manager and your company, you have to be dedicated to meet your targets and put your best foot forward. Have a clear understanding of timelines and try to meet them as much as possible
  • Keep collaborating: The key is to continue conversations and collaboration with your colleagues. Make the most out of tech tools that can make this a seamless process
  • Take regular breaks: With a home office, your work can overpower your regular life. Take regular breaks, munch on some snacks, and get exercise during the day. Take advantage of the flexible schedule that comes with a work-from home set-up
Hence, working from home can be a big change if you haven't extensively done it before. But if you're mindful about your approach, you can be happy, productive and very successful. Follow some of the tips explained above to bring some sanity and meaning to the organized chaos. Above all else, remember that the key lies in finding what works for you, and helps you be more productive.
Ravindra Kelkar

Area Vice President, Indian Subcontinent, Citrix

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