COVID19: My Remote Work Experience

Career Advice, Inspiration / Thursday, April 9th, 2020

My remote work experience in the face of COVID19 Pandemic!

Hi everyone, it has been almost 3 weeks of working from home and I thought I should share my remote working experience with you. My employer due to the pandemic activated 100 % remote work for all employees. 

I have read a wave of opinions on social media about remote work, whether it is effective or not as well as concerns around if employees are staying productive? I believe my answer to that is a total YES! There would be specifics for the different job roles but most importantly focusing on results than activity and having the right infrastructure and tools ensures success.

In Nigeria, you will battle data issues, epileptic power supply but I think there is a lot of opportunity for working remotely both for employees and employers for improving productivity. Take a look at the few areas I have spotlighted from my remote work experience, kindly enjoy and share.

Start Early: I wake up as early as possible to kick off my morning. I have a shower, prepare a light breakfast and drink tea. This keeps me focused and sets my mood for work. 

I also indulge in exercising (at home), meditation to keep me in sync with the tasks I plan to achieve and to help me focus rather than panic. There’s a bit of a mind game involved when working remotely if you must be productive, I avoid my bed, wear a work-shirt and minimise social media use during my active work-hours.

Food and Snack:  I am trying as much as possible to eat healthy meals and snacks, as well as drink a lot of water to stay hydrated. I made proper meals and stocked up before lock-down took effect here in Lagos. Although, I must say my stash of fruits have depleted and at the time of writing this, I have just two apples left. Send help!!!! (Lol)

Work and Productivity: My productivity is at peak performance, even though I have done longer hours during this period, I feel less drained. Meetings have been long but I understand it’s why and looking forward to when this normalises. 

I have had several team level-ups during the week via the use of Hangout, WhatsApp, Slack, Emails and Phone calls (exactly in that order). 

The most positive of all meetings I had this week was being on our team’s Friday Learning session with over 90 staff members and it was all a refreshing experience for me. 

Mental Health: I am thankful my mind is finding some peace thanks to the encouraging words of a partner, worship music and just faith that everything would be fine. The first week was scary for me, I mean a slight itch here or there and there is that worry about having caught the virus. 

Living alone hasn’t been easier but I am doing just fine mentally, I am in a better place than I was during the first week.

Challenges: My biggest challenge has been power supply but I have thrived through it. I believe that the collective productivity of Nigerians would improve if this is sorted out. Also, it is important to have a to-do work list and periodically check-in to tick off your accomplished tasks. I would advise you to knock off your recurring tasks early in the week to allow you to focus on other aspects of your job.

Final Thoughts: I am looking forward to a time when professionals and business owners who doubt remote working become believers of it. I think that even in the face of these peculiar challenges, the positives outweigh the negatives. 

Here some last-minute thoughts:

  • Working remotely challenges your ability to win at your job ownership.
  • Working remotely does not mean working fewer hours.
  • Pay attention to your mental health and eating habits.
  • Your working remote expectations vs reality can differ, suck it up and work.
  • Social distancing gets so lonely but you are not alone.
  • Learn to manage expectations and communicate effectively with colleagues.

Ultimately, I would say this has been great so far and I hope the future of work and remote we have all talked about has come to stay. Looking forward to doing more, let’s crush it.

Are you working remotely, what is your remote work experience, please share below in the comment section.

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