Navigating the Workplace Shift by Samantha Raj

We are living in – and working in – truly interesting times these days! In what feels like the blink of an eye, we all went from a normal schedule of “commute, work, come home” 5 days a week, to staying home unless completely necessary. As an office, we have been staying connected through social media (#ShiftWFH), virtual happy hours with our teams, and getting tips & tricks in how to make our new work-spaces the best they can be, to help ease into the change.

Although over 8 million Americans work remotely full-time, both veterans and newbies of working from home have a lot to navigate with this new workplace shift, especially with stay-at-home orders in place. We asked a few Shifters to shed some light on how they are staying productive and positive while staying at home to slow the spread.

What are you doing to not go “quarantine crazy”?

“I have always been really into meditating and with the help of my HeadSpace App, I have made a point to at least take time to do so each day, for even just for a quick 5-minute break. I also make it a point to not watch the news as much as I normally do.” – Meg, Program Manager

“I’ve been spending my weekdays as ‘normal’ as possible – waking up at a normal time, working, cooking dinner, and then relaxing. On weekends, I have been getting a head start on spring cleaning and reorganizing, and avoiding spending a lot of my free time in front of a screen.” – Samantha, Program Specialist

“I am trying to get outside every day and go for a run or a walk. I also bought a stationary bike and am using the Peloton app!” – Dylan, Program Coordinator

“I’ve been trying new recipes with my fiancée and watching those movies that we never got around to seeing.” – Renee, Program Specialist

How are you separating your workday from your “home” time?

“I try to log on and log off at the same time every day unless there are urgent matters. I think it’s important to keep a schedule, that way work and home don’t blend too much together.” – Samantha, Program Specialist

I make a list at the end of every day of things I want to accomplish for the next workday for chores and personal items, and when I want to get them done, whether it be before or after work. I also go for a run every day during lunch, and then after I wrap up my workday, I do a short strength-training workout. It helps to have a structured routine.” – Renee, Program Specialist

“I establish a specific workspace in my house and keep it separate from other living spaces – it helps me stay focused.” – Alysha, Team Lead

What is your favorite “pick me up” when you’re feeling the Stay-at-Home Blues?

Coloring!” – Meg, Program Manager

FaceTime chats with friends over cocktails – it’s nice to ‘see’ people!” – Dylan, Program Coordinator

Sitting on my patio and virtual happy hours!” – Renee, Program Specialist

“I dusted off my bike and ride more often. I appreciate being outside much more than I used to.” – Evan, Product Manager

If you’re working remotely while a spouse, roommate, children, parents, etc. are home as well, what are you doing to manage this new dynamic?

“My fiancé and I share a workspace at our dining room table. So far, it’s working out great, but we both are on the phone a lot. Because of that, we go over our call schedules first thing in the morning. If we have overlapping calls, one of us will move to our guestroom workspace.” – Renee, Program Specialist

“We have set up dedicated working spaces that are separated by a wall. That way, we cannot see each other and we both have our own work areas.” – Dylan, Program Coordinator

What have you found makes you the most productive with this new shift into remote work?

“My deliverables have increased, so I find myself busy and the workday goes by fast. If I really need to focus, I don’t have any TV or music on.”– Renee, Program Specialist

“Getting up to take breaks is key at this time. It helps me break down the day.” – Dylan, Program Coordinator

On the flip side, what have you found makes you more distracted or less productive? How are you combating this?

“Working in the exact same place all day makes me less motivated. In the Shift office, I used conference rooms and common areas for meetings and as a change of scenery. Now, I am trying to get up and move locations a couple of times throughout the day.” – Samantha, Program Specialist

“I have video games and TV at an arm’s reach. Before I get distracted by that stuff, I always make sure that I complete everything on my to-do list.” – Evan, Product Manager

As you can see, we are all keeping busy with work and play! Stay connected with how we all continue to adapt to our new normal by following #ShiftWFH and @ShiftDigital1 on Instagram.

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