Stay at Home Tips and Resources

For the next month and possibly longer, we are all adjusting to the ‘new normal’. For a portion of us, this will involve working from home.

Now, working from home sounds quite nice – and in many respects it is, although it does take a whole lot of self-motivation, daily planning and independance.

I’ve added here a set of resources for new home workers. Some you might already be familiar with – if so, that’s fab…. others you may be learning about for the first time – if so, double fab.

When working from home, you really need to create a space that says ‘W O R K’. This can be a spare room, or spot in a quiet -ish space. Wherever you choose, ensure it’s roomy enough to comfortably work, it is quiet and private for focus and call making, and that you have good phone reception and internet access.

Creating a Workspace

Your first ‘cannot live without’ is email. If you have a work email and it can be accessed via webmail (Gmail, etc.) then this part is easy. If you have an email account that utilises a local-based email program such as Outlook, you will need to make friends with IT support or an IT consultant and allow them to set this up for you. Another way is to access your office-based pc/laptop using a Virtual Private Network connection (VPN). Again, an IT contact will be able to set this up for you. If you opt for the VPN access, then you will be logging into your system remotely and accessing your computer as if you were working on it. There is usually a small time delay, but it’s fairly good.

Team Working

At work, team meetings tend to happen in a boardroom. At home, they usually happen by video or audio call. One of the best options for both is ‘Zoom’. The free version will support unlimited one-to-one calls and group calls of up to 40 minutes. The premium version is unlimited time-wise for both one-to-one calls and conference calls. With both you can use video, screen share messaging features.

Project Management

It is also a wise idea if you communicate with others day-to-day, to sign up to project management software. My favourite is Basecamp as it is easy to use. It’s free to sign up. You can then create projects and folders within projects. You can invite others to join projects, ‘ping them’ (instant private messaging), set ‘to do’ tasks with time-frames and comment on documents. An excellent feature is that you can ‘upload a new version’ of a document to over-write its predecessor.

Other options are: Podio, Highrise, Team Work and Zoho. They all work in much the same way, bar the fact that premium options provide greater levels of support, or space, allow more team members to join and tend to offer more insights and statistics.

Day-to-day Planning

For your day-to-to day planning, you can use Google docs which are online versions of Word and Excel. Google calendar or one within your email program are excellent for setting tasks at certain times. If you work in sales, then you will likely use your own sales software like Hubspot or another CRM. Trello allows you to make digital notes and set time-frames. You can download this as an app for smartphone and devices too.

Mental Health

This is one that can be forgotten and its quite important – especially as you might not see another human being for a long time.

So, find what gives structure to your day and what soothes or comforts you. I find that stopping every two hours to make a drink, stretch the legs and cuddle the two cats works for me. I set lunch time as between 1pm and 2:30pm, dependent on when there is an ideal pausing point.

Lunch times are spent outdoors if possible. I use the break to chat to friends and to sit with the cats. You can take a short walk too or pop to the shop.

Music has a way of adding a ‘mood’ and ‘pace’. I like upbeat tunes for statistical work and laid back soulful or easy listening for writing tasks, but pick whatever music works for you, if you like background noise.

We can help you:

  • Brainstorm ideas and create an online strategy
  • Provide templates to support your online planning
  • Manage your digital communications each month and give you first-class mentoring

Email us at for details.

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