December 27, 2021
Remote work isn’t by any means new, but it’s become increasingly common over the last ten years. Then, a skyrocketing spike hit as people adjusted to life alongside the COVID-19 pandemic. Some people have strived and planned to be able to work remotely, while others are waiting for the day they can march back into their offices and work alongside like-minded teammates.
Surveys from 2021 offer every indication that the average number of people enjoy the flexibility of being able to work from home, at least some of the time. Whether by design or by force of circumstance, many companies have adjusted to proper technology and the demands on their employees to allow them to work anywhere, so long as managers can still see necessary results.
There are so many aspects of being able to work remotely, and pros and cons can and will be weighed constantly. There is a particular aspect of remote work that often gets overlooked, especially for people who did not plan to be working outside of an office, and that is aesthetics.
Did we catch you rolling your eyes? I hope not. Consider that office design and build-out can cost thousands, hundreds of thousands, or even more, just to produce a space that is optimal for human happiness and productivity.
Details like natural lighting, visible plant life, and storage space to avoid clutter are well-thought-out when building an office. You thought that picture of a natural landscape in your dentist's office was a coincidence? Nope, it was probably put there on purpose because images of nature are soothing and reduce stress.
Then, one day, you pick up your laptop and maybe some file folders, haul them home, and work hunched at a kitchen table instead. If you’ve been working from home long enough, you probably know that the kitchen table or the couch simply isn’t going to cut it for a full-time work week.
If you haven’t already, it's time to put some thought into your remote workspace. The place you do your work can have a huge impact on how you feel throughout the day, and we want all our employees to have the best work experience possible, whether that be in one of our many facilities, or in the location of their choice. We have reason to believe other companies feel the same way.
Many people think that they need a dedicated room to be able to happily work from home. If you have the room to spare, that’s great! For some people, this simply isn’t realistic. Yet, there are proven benefits to creating an environment specifically for work. Carving out a corner or two offers a place to be able to mentally separate your professional work from your homework. You’ve probably felt that nagging feeling to check emails while watching Netflix, and to do laundry while finishing a report. Having a specific space will help you focus on the tasks that you put to hand.
Whether it be a specific desk, a drawer for work-related items, or a curtained-off part of a room, you may find separating workspace from home space helps you remain productive at work and unplugged after the workday is done.
Once you have that space, it is appropriate to intentionally set up the area how you want it. People decorate cubicles with pictures and knick-knacks. Allow things in your space that you find beautiful, energizing, or calming.
Like to work in a lot of different spaces? We hear that! Consider personal touches like vinyl stickers on the back of your laptop, or be intentional about the desktop photo on your computer. You see these items a LOT. Let them be a positive message to you, and cue your professional mind to turn on.
If you’re happy with the way your space is set up, make sure you have the proper tools to get your work done. If you find yourself wishing for the office copier, printer, or other tools, it might be worth a chat with your manager to see what the best solution is for success.
If you’re working from home consistently, tools for success may also include useful means of communication with all the people on your team. Make sure everyone is on the same page as to the best form of communication and stay in touch with each other. These connections with colleagues are valuable for the company, but perhaps even more valuable for your work-life satisfaction.
Finally, it is easy to get stir-crazy living and working in the same space. If you’re feeling the need to get out, then, by all means, step out. Relocate your work, or leave a message for your coworkers that you’ll be stepping out for a frame of time, or you might even be able to stop in your local office! As long as you’re completing your work and staying safe, recognizing the need for a change of scenery or social behavior is critical to your mental health.
Remote work is an incredible skill for work-life balance and, as it’s become more common, many companies have been able to pivot to having remote employees. If you’re working remotely already, identifying your workspace, personalizing it, and ensuring you have the right tools will help keep your professional life truly optimized. Proper communication and recognizing social needs will set you up for success and help keep you satisfied with your opportunities at work.
If you’re finding the transition to remote work difficult, or are straining to maintain an efficient workflow between paper and digital files, that’s a problem GLC can handle. Hand it off to our incredible team, and consider it done.