As social of a person as I am, I never thought I would ever adapt to working from home. I love interacting with people, and going to the site was always something I looked forward to. The gatherings, THE PIZZA, the jokes, helping others. More than a couple years ago I got the chance to change and lead a Work at Home team…quite a change! I went from dealing with hundreds of agents and staff members face to face to dealing with hundreds of agents on chat, Skype and Adobe. I was lucky enough to still have a good chunk of people on-site, and that kept me going! I could still eat pizza with others! Change was coming. My boss at the time was clear (and also right), “If you want to be effective managing the at-home, you gotta work at home!” I acted quick, clumsily “conditioned” a corner in a room and started to work from home.
BOY! What a change! I got to know myself better and learned a lot. These are all my realizations as I started to adapt.
- First, I realized that I stress eat. I had to buy less junk food immediately, cause I was gaining pounds like it was part of my job description!
- Second I realized that I had to set up a routine that got me into work mode. I really needed to ensure I showered, I watched some educational videos, I had to have coffee, log in at a specific hour, and most importantly, socialize…virtually, before I even checked an email.
- I also realized that I needed to keep on my regular work habits, but virtually! Say hi to everyone I worked was critical. “Good Morning,” “How was lunch?” “You should head out right now!” “Enjoy your evening!”
- Third I realized that I worked more when at home, and I needed to force myself to disconnect. As I worked to get myself to log in on time, I also had to force myself to log out on time!!! I found myself too often working late nights, or logging in on weekends to “check” on emails.
- Fourth I realized the best way to release stress is to go hug my son (and now my daughter too!). Go pick him up at school, or have lunch with them improves any bad day quickly!
- Fifth…I need a comfortable chair!
- Sixth…what the hell is traffic again?
Now I work 100% from home. I changed my position from the early days I started managing the at-home. I travel significantly more now. I have 2 kids, so being able to work from home after a tough patch of weekly back to back travel is all I could ask for, and I now find myself thinking I would have it hard going back to a center (I’m sure I’d adapt again).
The times are changing, and the at-home model will be more prevalent, so invest in a good coffee maker and good coffee beans, a nice screen (or two), a nice chair, condition a spot in your house and get ready to rumble! And while you’re at it, ensure to hug your loved ones while on your well-deserved break!
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