Go Back  British Expats > Living & Moving Abroad > Canada > The Maple Leaf
Reload this Page >

Working From Home Tips

Working From Home Tips

Old Mar 24th 2020, 3:19 pm
  #1  
Tea Drinker
Thread Starter
 
Danny B's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Kamloops, BC
Posts: 4,627
Danny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond repute
Default Working From Home Tips

I was on vacation last week (Spring Break) so yesterday was my first day back IN the office. No sooner had I arrived I was told to collect my screens, docking station, keyboard etc and work from home for the foreseeable future. My dining room table is now my new desk.

Anyone got any tips for WFH? Feels weird that my new commute to work is my landing and stairs. I'm sitting here fully showered, fully dressed, cup of tea in hand waiting for the clock to strike 8am so that I can login.

Danny B is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 3:46 pm
  #2  
BE Forum Addict
 
Paul_Shepherd's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,866
Paul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Originally Posted by Danny B View Post
I was on vacation last week (Spring Break) so yesterday was my first day back IN the office. No sooner had I arrived I was told to collect my screens, docking station, keyboard etc and work from home for the foreseeable future. My dining room table is now my new desk.

Anyone got any tips for WFH? Feels weird that my new commute to work is my landing and stairs. I'm sitting here fully showered, fully dressed, cup of tea in hand waiting for the clock to strike 8am so that I can login.

It must be really weird....thankfully I have avoided it, so sorry no tips. The company I work for falls into a catergory for an exempt businesses. Although around 60% of the company is working from home, myself and a couple of the other designers and drafters are in, cant really do our jobs from a lap top sitting on the couch! All the shop floor guys are still in too... they obviously cant work from home.
Paul_Shepherd is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 4:09 pm
  #3  
BE user by choice
 
MillieF's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: A Briton, married to a Canadian, now in Fredericton.
Posts: 4,835
MillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond reputeMillieF has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Actually I’m not doing very well with it, and I was in the office last week, so for me too Danny...it’s not been long.

I can pick up all our phone messages remotely and contact our clients, but then trying to get documentation done is a bit of a nightmare.

It’s actually a hell of a lot more stressy I am finding than doing it at work!

I’m really pretty crap on a laptop too
MillieF is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 4:29 pm
  #4  
Lowering the tone
 
Jingsamichty's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Here and there
Posts: 6,382
Jingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond reputeJingsamichty has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

I'm WFH since last Monday, just over a week. I don't like it. However I've decided not to pretend that I'm simply "in the office" at home, so am not setting myself "office hours"... I've got things to do and I'll get them done during my waking hours, but it's not realistic for people to expect me to be available/working normal office hours while I'm in the family home. Family things get in the way, like it or not.

Fortunately we're coming towards the end of my project so I'm not as busy as during the peak, so can afford to slack off a bit. My colleagues share the same approach.
Jingsamichty is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 5:50 pm
  #5  
Tea Drinker
Thread Starter
 
Danny B's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Kamloops, BC
Posts: 4,627
Danny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

So far so good, I have been just as productive at home as I would have been in the office.


Danny B is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 5:50 pm
  #6  
L/R
 
Pulaski's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2001
Location: Dixie, ex UK
Posts: 49,526
Pulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

I've worked from home for 2-3 days a week most weeks for over 7 years, including the last 13 months when I have worked from home exclusively (except 5-6 days when I had to attend meetings).

I think having a dedicated desk/ workspace helps (I am lucky enough to have a home with an office - a bedroom without a closet) and IMO having the same desk set-up as in the office is probably most critical - I have two wide monitors as well as my laptop screen, and then my laptop is also hooked up to a full-size keyboard, so I have a full "office-away-from-office" set-up. This is also how my wife's laptop is set up, and we coughed up about $300 for additional screens and a hub unit (to enable her laptop to connect to multiple screens, keyboard, and power supply), as she was told to WFH at the start of last week. She is currently using the dining room, but given a week or two we are looking at moving her workspace to a spare bedroom or the "bonus room", room over the garage.

Otherwise, try to keep up the same routine, including taking breaks and getting drinks and food - I find it all too easy to get stuck to my desk and find that I have gone all morning without making a tea, that it's 2pm and I haven't stopped for lunch, or especially at the end of the day thinking "I'll just finish one more file", then finding that if I had been in the office I would have gone home two hours ago!
Pulaski is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 8:21 pm
  #7  
MODERATOR
 
Siouxie's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2009
Location: SW Ontario
Posts: 18,273
Siouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond reputeSiouxie has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
I've worked from home for 2-3 days a week most weeks for over 7 years, including the last 13 months when I have worked from home exclusively (except 5-6 days when I had to attend meetings).

I think having a dedicated desk/ workspace helps (I am lucky enough to have a home with an office - a bedroom without a closet) and IMO having the same desk set-up as in the office is probably most critical - I have two wide monitors as well as my laptop screen, and then my laptop is also hooked up to a full-size keyboard, so I have a full "office-away-from-office" set-up. This is also how my wife's laptop is set up, and we coughed up about $300 for additional screens and a hub unit (to enable her laptop to connect to multiple screens, keyboard, and power supply), as she was told to WFH at the start of last week. She is currently using the dining room, but given a week or two we are looking at moving her workspace to a spare bedroom or the "bonus room", room over the garage.

Otherwise, try to keep up the same routine, including taking breaks and getting drinks and food - I find it all too easy to get stuck to my desk and find that I have gone all morning without making a tea, that it's 2pm and I haven't stopped for lunch, or especially at the end of the day thinking "I'll just finish one more file", then finding that if I had been in the office I would have gone home two hours ago!
I've worked from home for years, it gets easier, but you have to make sure you can get some social interaction at some point in your day - so if you live alone, pick up the phone!!

Yes, have a dedicated workspace - and tell everyone 'no interuptions, I'm working' - set yourself break times (just as you would if you worked in an office) - take a coffee break - away from your desk/laptop, take a lunch break .. and set yourself a time that you will finish for the day - and shut the laptop / computer off. Don't accept calls before a reasonable hour nor after your normal work day would finish.

Allow yourself some 'unwinding time' after you have finished or if things are getting to be a bit much during your working day. Instead of chatting with colleagues (or if that's an option then chat with colleagues online) read the paper online or go to a forum for 10 minutes, or play a game to give your brain a break from work...
Siouxie is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 8:52 pm
  #8  
BE Forum Addict
 
Paul_Shepherd's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,866
Paul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond reputePaul_Shepherd has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Originally Posted by Siouxie View Post
I've worked from home for years, it gets easier, but you have to make sure you can get some social interaction at some point in your day - so if you live alone, pick up the phone!!

Yes, have a dedicated workspace - and tell everyone 'no interuptions, I'm working' - set yourself break times (just as you would if you worked in an office) - take a coffee break - away from your desk/laptop, take a lunch break .. and set yourself a time that you will finish for the day - and shut the laptop / computer off. Don't accept calls before a reasonable hour nor after your normal work day would finish.

Allow yourself some 'unwinding time' after you have finished or if things are getting to be a bit much during your working day. Instead of chatting with colleagues (or if that's an option then chat with colleagues online) read the paper online or go to a forum for 10 minutes, or play a game to give your brain a break from work...
This was one of the reasons I was so reluctant to do it, I think I would go insane not seeing any one during the week now my weekends have been curtailed! Plus as Pulaski says not having the right set up is not good, I would need a dedicated spot to do my job, all I have at the moment is a kitchen counter and bar stools lol! I sold a lot of my furniture when I moved out of my house, so Im quite minimalist now. Luckily I don't have to worry about it now....well for now, who knows what may be around the corner...
Paul_Shepherd is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 9:31 pm
  #9  
Tea Drinker
Thread Starter
 
Danny B's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Kamloops, BC
Posts: 4,627
Danny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond reputeDanny B has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

One thing I have never noticed until now is that my microphone is very sensitive. Our French bulldog snores extremely loud and is now sleeping right next to me! It was a bit embarrassing when I forgot to mute and she was snoring like crazy.

Thanks for your tips, breaks are definitely essential.
Danny B is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 9:38 pm
  #10  
Lost in BE Cyberspace
 
Jsmth321's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 25,772
Jsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond reputeJsmth321 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

I think I would crazy if I worked from home only, work is the only social time with others I have, so it would become incredibly isolating in many ways, and I would be less productive, too many distractions at home with wife, dog, traffic noise, etc which would likely not be compatible with a productive day.

Jsmth321 is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 10:51 pm
  #11  
Newlywed
 
Dorothy's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 28,933
Dorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond reputeDorothy has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Best tips from a friend who owns a home based transcription service is to treat your day the same as if you physically had to go out. Get up to the alarm, shower and get dressed as usual, go to the office (even if it's the dining table) and work. Remind anyone else in the house that you're at work and not available for anything else during work hours. She said it was hard at first but within a couple of days her family got it.

Good luck. I know I would rather be working at home right now but unfortunately have been deemed part of an essential service so have to go in every day.
Dorothy is offline  
Old Mar 24th 2020, 11:55 pm
  #12  
Bex in the city
 
beckiwoo's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 3,798
beckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond reputebeckiwoo has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Originally Posted by Jsmth321 View Post
I think I would crazy if I worked from home only, work is the only social time with others I have, so it would become incredibly isolating in many ways, and I would be less productive, too many distractions at home with wife, dog, traffic noise, etc which would likely not be compatible with a productive day.
I’m have a similar thought process.

Im deemed essential, I need to go in and it’s tough. I’m coming home more drained and more tired but there is nothing I can do about that.

Despite this, I still manage to have a laugh with colleagues and even though we are all concerned about being exposed to COVID-19. We just manage to get on with it.

beckiwoo is offline  
Old Mar 25th 2020, 12:31 am
  #13  
Assimilated Pauper
 
dbd33's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2005
Location: Ontario
Posts: 38,555
dbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond reputedbd33 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

I've worked from home, hotel rooms, camp sites, moving cars, a canoe, for a long time, since one had to use an acoustic coupler to connect the modem to a physical phone. Sometimes I connected via what was called a "pay phone", a fixed device on a wall in a public place which was operated by putting coins in slots. I work from bed early in the morning, then the breakfast table, then the sofa, then from the kitchen counter next to the stove; it doesn't matter, I'm only using a laptop and a phone.

My advice is to only bill for time actually worked. You should be able to do more work in less time than in the office (due to there being fewer scrums/status meetings and managerial interactions) and be able to work more hours (due to not commuting) and so be ahead financially. Remember thought that you can't tell how hard everyone else is working and some of them will be going flat out and looking to displace you. You have to be competitive about it.

Get some electrical tape and put it over the camera in the computer. Otherwise, if you have to do a conference you will have shown everyone the inside of your nose and that will be more interesting to the audience than whatever you wanted to day.

dbd33 is offline  
Old Mar 25th 2020, 5:42 am
  #14  
Lost in BE Cyberspace
 
ann m's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Location: Cochrane, Alberta
Posts: 7,837
ann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond reputeann m has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Day One of “Working from Home"

Set alarm for 7.20am, just because…. Woo hoo, a lie-in.

Get up, have shower.

Try to decide whether to wear ‘nice’ clothes or comfy clothes. Mix and match. Decide on Nice Top in case, you know, video chat, and then leggings. Even manage to put on mascara.

Make cup of tea. Take dog out for quick walk.

Commute from the bedroom to the kitchen table, 5.2 seconds. I am still late for work.

Fire up computer and see about 8 messages from my team who were obviously on time for work.

Check lots of emails that have mysteriously appeared overnight, then remember that my manager was working the evening shift due to having babies at home who do not comply with 9-5 office hours.

Eat Weetabix at desk. Start replying to emails.

Make a cup of tea, and move laundry into dryer while kettle is boiling.

Use the dog under my feet as an impromptu pair of heated slippers.

Update some documents.

Fart about with Settings on laptop, where font is too small and the clock is 2 hours and 22 minutes ahead of me.

Random thought - through rations and portion control, and walking dog 3 times a day, I could lose weight while working from home. Devour a bag of chocolate mini eggs.

Steal the kitchen clock from wall and place on table beside computer because I cannot fix Settings on laptop and am paranoid I might miss the Team meeting at 1pm, even though it’s only 9.40am. However, the clock ‘ticks’ and is annoying me already.

Comfort Daughter Number Two (who is 20 by the way) who emerges from her bedroom and is sick. Not corona sick you understand, just pukey sick. Nice. Dog runs to sofa, for as many cuddles as possible, from anyone willing to partake.

Answer some emails. Turn up heating because the house does not know I am here and goes cold.

Is it lunchtime yet? No – it is 10.45. Oh dear. Make another cup of tea.

Read lots of documents. It must be lunchtime by now. Diet not going well. Try again tomorrow.

Take dog around the block.

Team meeting at 1pm and how lovely to see my gang on video. Try to sort out what a new normal might look like. Abnormal.

Make lists, try to find something suitable to use as a mouse mat. Not successful. Might need to go to Staples.

Put on heated dog-shaped slippers again – these are fun.

Answer a few more emails and desperately try to keep up with all the little red notifications on Microsoft Teams. Get confused.

Decide I don’t like where I have set up my office and will need to re-think the position and layout tomorrow. Especially as husband will be on night shifts and apparently I talk loudly on video. Must notify dog of new office location though.

Clock off just after 4.30pm and commute back to kitchen where I can make supper, like, on time. This beats getting home pooped at 5.45pm. Still answer lots of Team ‘pings’ during evening.

Take dog for 3rd trip around the block – she is as confused as my Fitbit. Weight loss - +1lb.
ann m is offline  
Old Mar 25th 2020, 2:56 pm
  #15  
L/R
 
Pulaski's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2001
Location: Dixie, ex UK
Posts: 49,526
Pulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Working From Home Tips

Originally Posted by Dorothy View Post
Best tips from a friend who owns a home based transcription service is to treat your day the same as if you physically had to go out. Get up to the alarm, shower and get dressed as usual, ....
That's the biggest change for me in the past two weeks - although I have worked from home exclusively for over a year, I have still had to take our daughter to school every day (well, for 8 months of the year), so I have had to maintain an early rise, and get breakfast for little Miss P, before returning home to work - for someone who works from home, I must have one of the longest daily journeys from bed to desk. But, for now at least, the school run is done, and I do have, relatively speaking, a lie-in, but I also get to have breakfast with Mrs P every day, before we go our separate ways "to the office" - hers in the dining room, mine upstairs.
Pulaski is offline  

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.