WFH, Fyber and Coronavirus – Part II

As we move forward into possibly the fifth or sixth week (who’s counting?) of #WFH, new routines have been created and new methods of working are continually evolving.  It seems a distant memory, the thought of waking up in the morning, travelling to work and being stuck in a traffic jam.

 

While companies acclimatize themselves to their new remote work routines, the coronavirus pandemic is having and is likely to continue to have, a lasting impact on how work is conducted in the future.  

 

At Fyber, we have successfully managed to continue working – with regular team meetings, site meetings and all-company meetings.  Participating in a video call with almost 200 people definitely proves that we have the technology and the support to make this possible.

 

According to a number of articles on the issue of #WFH, Coronavirus has led to millions of people around the world becoming remote workers, almost overnight, as companies try to continue working and operating amid the global pandemic. Research (carried out at Stanford University) has shown that working from home made employees more productive and less likely to quit.  But while working from home is saving certain industries from impending doom, it may not always be a positive move for workers and productivity.  Research has shown that working from home can increase productivity substantially. Obviously, this is affected by different parameters such as having kids at home, having the right equipment and being prepared and correctly trained to perform your job remotely.

 

Other research indicates that in a five-day working week, working remotely for two to three days is the most productive. That gives the employee two to three days of meetings, collaboration and social interaction, with the opportunity to just focus on the work for the other half of the week.

 

Another report suggested that to make remote working a success, the main ingredients are establishing trust, ensuring accountability, and fostering good collaboration are critical to a successful remote work environment.

 

In terms of what our new future will hold, nobody knows.  Companies that instigated working from home prior to Coronavirus, have reported huge financial savings in terms of property rentals and according to a report by Indeed, 60% of employers reported that their staff took fewer sick days, there was a significantly lower turnover of staff and a rise in the productivity of their employees.

 

Essentially, my work day hasn’t changed too much.  I’m still a firm believer in having an organised structure to my day – just without the “good mornings” as everyone arrives at the office each day.  

 

When it comes to sitting down and working, it’s very helpful to have a plan for each day – know what you’re going to work on, make time for breaks away from the computer, time to eat, time to exercise and to actually finish what you planned for that day – to create a sense of achievement for yourself at the end of the working day.

 

The extra time at home can also give us a great opportunity to take advantage of our creative sides – from blog writing to baking.  As well as a chance to do those things at home that have been waiting for us to take care of or have been nagged to start (or finish) for a long time.

Coronavirus has created a new reality for all of us on a global scale.  Never before have we been forced, in many places by law, to self-isolate, social distance and simply save the world by staying home and watching Netflix. Personally, I’ve always been very comfortable with my own company.  Something that isn’t easy for a lot of people.

 

The benefits of being comfortable with yourself include:

 

  • Helping us look at things introspectively – something that doesn’t happen naturally in social settings.
  • Giving us space to process our thoughts and feelings about the world, our lives and other people, rather than being coloured and influenced on life experiences by the opinions, stress, nervous energies and expectations of others.
  • Enabling us to explore our lives. Once we are away from the noise, we can see more clearly what our definition of a life well-lived looks like, rather than comparing our experience to somebody else’s.
  • Many of us need a friend or partner to help us face any sort of fear, but when we are forced to do it alone, we realize how brave and courageous we really are. Just knowing that you were able to do this by yourself is good enough reason to start trusting yourself more.

 

Fyber – a dog-friendly company – has been encouraging its employees around the world with surprise gifts – the alcohol has definitely lifted our spirits and made others a little sleepy.

 

Fyber is also continuing to support its employees in other ways, particularly those who may be finding this period difficult to deal with, by providing us with access to counselling and therapy.  

 

It’s a very important time for people who are finding this period tough, to talk and share feelings with someone else since “a problem shared is a problem halved” – we’re definitely all in this together.  It’s a demanding time for everyone, regardless of your personal status or professional position, but Fyber is a powerful, competent and resilient team and we’ll get through this to make us even stronger and more united.

 

A big thank you to all the healthcare providers and key workers around the world for all they are doing. 

 

Stay safe, stay home and stay healthy!

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