At the beginning of the year, many of us were working how we always have: in dedicated workspaces outside of the home. Some of us had the job perk of having a “work from home day,” when we wanted/needed to spend the day working from home. As we are nearing the end of 2020, many of us have not been allowed to return to our offices and MUST work remotely.
An Experience of a “Team Member”
I fall into the category of having the “work from home” perk to now fully working remotely for the foreseeable future.
Working from home was a great perk! It made life much more convenient when I needed to run errands, wait for an important delivery, a family appointment, anything that required me to be away from the office. There was no need for an entire dedicated space (e.g., home office). I would work from my living room couch, the dining room table, even in my bed! Wherever I felt like working from for the day, that’s where I worked.
Those days of the “work from home perk” are over, and now we are “working remotely,” which is a different ball game.
When my company switched to entirely remote work, I realized that working from my couch or my dining room table just wasn’t going to cut it. I needed to create my dedicated workspace in my home that would be suitable for 8 hours of daily solid work. So, I created that dedicated workspace. I gathered my must-have belongings that I had on my desk in my office, brought them home, cleaned off an old desk, and set up my new permanent home office setup—having a permanent workspace is the main difference work from home as a perk from home and remote work.
Working remotely was an adjustment for me. Working remotely at home meant I’m not in the same space as my coworkers. All of us are isolated in our own homes. No more impromptu questions, clarifications, and watercooler talk with others popping by my desk. All that interaction has to be through technology, like email, zoom meetings, or messages. It also means I’m not commuting to the office. While many people see the lack of commuting as a benefit to remote work, I loved the commute. It gave me time to gather my thoughts for the day and figure out the tasks I want to accomplish.
With working remotely now, my routine has completely changed. Every morning, instead of commuting to the office, I’ll go out for a walk or a run in my neighborhood to gather my thoughts and goals for the day. Because I cannot pop by a coworker’s desk anymore, I’ve made a habit of “overcommunicating” to paint a picture of my current progress on a task. I also now set reminders and timers. These are so I make sure to take a break from looking at my computer screen and eat lunch! It’s so easy to get caught up in your work and forget to eat!
How to Help
A big challenge that many H.R. departments and managers are faced with their team members working remotely is keeping their teams motivated, engaged, and appreciated. Many companies have a hard time helping build a sense of teamwork and comradery. It’s something that is taken for granted when working in the office but is a significant part of keeping the team invested and involved.
There are some standard activities that H.R. professionals and managers have implemented to encourage teamwork, increase engagement, and make the team feel appreciated. They include virtual happy hours, virtual cooking sessions, and in-home virtual team challenges (such as ranking the best remote work setups, baby picture matching games, virtual bingo, etc.). While these activities are great, it’s safe to say WE ALL HAVE ZOOM FATIGUE! We must make sure we communicate that the most powerful way to keep employees engaged is to put something tangible and useful in their hands.
How to Motivate Remote Workers
Branded gifts are an incredibly effective way to keep employees engaged, motivated, and feel appreciated. For example, a customer of yours is working remotely for the foreseeable future. Recommend sending them a branded gift set with useful desktop accessories they will appreciate. A gift set may include wireless chargers, webcam covers, wrist rests, mousepads, etc.
Welcoming Staff Back to the Office
In the case a customer in the process of reopening, have them welcome their team members back with a back to the office gift set that may include face masks, ear saver, eyewear cases, wireless charging power banks, etc. Learn more here.
Say “Thank You” and Show Apreciation
If your customer’s team has been doing an exceptional job and a thank you is in order, recommend sending them a branded “Thank you!” gift. Learn more here.
These are just a few ideas that can go a long way to boosting morale during these unprecedented times.
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No matter the situation you and your customers are currently in, remember that we are all in this together, and we will get through this. If you are stuck and need great branded gift ideas call (312) 416-5070 or email our great team members at email@example.com