Working from home during the coronavirus outbreak comes with all sorts of challenges, especially having the kids at home with you all day. Interruptions become your biggest enemy against a productive work day.
“The key is trying to maintain a routine. I get up at the same time, get ready and set an agenda for the day," Brad says. "I don’t turn on the TV until the evening and try to get outside and get fresh air. Keeping a positive attitude and staying in touch with clients and friends while working remotely is imperative.”
Many businesses are turning to technology to keep productivity flowing. “We have gone to Zoom to have ‘face-to-face’ conferences with clients. I also am very attentive to answering/returning phone calls and emails. If anything, I’d say we might be overcommunicating with clients during this time,” Brad says.
So how will this pandemic affect legal professionals?
“We can’t know the full effect yet. From the standpoint of courtroom delays, no trials are being conducted currently. Of course that will cause a backlog. As far as hearings, most courts are making arrangements for video conferencing,” Brad says.
“Everyone is looking forward to things getting back to normal. I think about all the things I’ve taken for granted. But for the meantime, here are some ideas on how to survive this new work reality,” he says.
Make a plan
Sit down and have a family meeting and set up separate workspaces. If you have little ones at home, the first half of your challenge is keeping your children busy and learning. At the start of each day, write down your goals that you hope to achieve and prioritize your tasks.
Schedule the day
Most people thrive, especially children, on routine. Strive to keep the same wake and sleep times you had previously. Give yourself a lunch break and set aside time to get outside and get fresh air.
If there’s a silver lining during this pandemic, it’s that we live in a connected world. Online communication may not be perfect, but it’s a powerful tool. Take some time and utilize free resources like Zoom or Slack.
Take Help if it’s Offered
Now is a better time than any to let older children step up. They can help younger kids with schoolwork or keeping them engaged in activities. Turn to high-school-aged relatives, neighbors or babysitters to assist with homework through video conferencing.
Dress the Part
Don’t let noon roll around and you’re still in your pajamas. Getting ready and how we’re dressed impacts how we perform.
It is more important now than ever to stay connected to your co-workers and employees. Set morning video conference meetings so you can touch base and make sure to check on your peers to make sure they are hanging in there. Working alone may make you feel disconnected or isolated, but trying to stay connected through video will help.
Have Realistic Expectations
This situation is not ideal for anyone. Your video conference might get interrupted by a rowdy pet, or your daughter might need help with a difficult Algebra topic. Distractions while working from home are a given, but you can pivot, refocus and continue to be productive.
We are all in this together! You've got this. Stay safe and healthy out there!
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