For much of the world, the sudden shift to working remotely has been a shock and a challenge. For those of us here at The Kevin Eikenberry Group, it’s been a typical work week….kind of. In this series, we want to share our perspective as veterans “on the front lines” of remote work. We’ve learned a thing or two over the years that we hope might help you in your transition.
How long have you been working remotely?
I have been working with our remote team at The Kevin Eikenberry Group for almost five years, but I usually come into our Indianapolis office every day. I did work remote full time for about eight months between 2016 and 2017 and I’ve now been working remotely full time again since the middle of March.
What challenges (if any) are different for you in our COVID-19 remote work world and what tips do you have for overcoming these challenges?
My husband and I share a home office and, until recently, we worked different schedules so we never worked in the same room at the same time. For me, it’s about getting used to not only a bit of a different environment but also flipping back and forth between the role of teammate and wife. The best tip I have? Be patient with yourself. I’ve been trying to give myself, my teammates, and my husband grace as we all get used to this new normal.
What was your biggest challenge when you first started working from home and how did you overcome it?
When I first started working from home full time in 2016, one of the biggest struggles I had was separating work life from home life. I was lucky enough to have a dedicated office space in my home to work from so one of the things I did was physically leave the room when my work day was over. I also set Slack to Do Not Disturb automatically after my work day ends so notifications don’t disrupt family time.
What tips do you have for staying connected with your teammates?
If you’re working out a problem or talking about a project, try to get on Zoom or a phone call. If you’re on Zoom, turn on your webcam if you can. And don’t be afraid to ask how they’re doing, talk about a show that you know they’ve watched, or any other conversations you may have normally had in the office. It will give you both a bit of a mental break and you may even learn something about them that you didn’t know before.
About the Author
Marisa Eikenberry is the Web Guru at The Kevin Eikenberry Group. She lives in Indianapolis, IN with her husband, is an all around tech geek, book enthusiast, aspiring home cook and philomath.