Remote Work

We’re all working from home for an uncertain period of time. This is a new normal to adjust to, so this guide helps answer some obvious questions and helps you answer some not-so-obvious ones

The basics

Check off from this list if you have everything you need to function normally:

  • Your laptop in good working condition

  • All the tools, logins, etc. to be able to function optimally

  • A decent wifi connection

  • In case of wifi outage, a robust phone connection to hotspot off of, while you take the wifi service provider to task

  • A sturdy table and chair that will support 8 hours of comfortable sitting

  • If you share your home space with others, and need to tell them this is work, not a vacation, please read this and this. You might need to ward off folks at home assuming that physical availability at home means availability to do chores. You might want to introduce the new normal gently to folks you live with.

If you have trouble figuring any of this, please raise that issue and let’s see what we can do to help you.

For an extremely comprehensive guide, check out the Coronavirus Tech Handbook.

What changes

Greater intentionality: Distance requires this. What would’ve been assumed, understood etc. now will not be. As a default, over-communicate with your team and your leads. In time, you will get used to each other’s new styles. You will either ramp up some of the details that you were sharing because they were well-received, or reduce intensity on other details that are not needed. Assuming that “nothing changes” is a mistake. Proactively ask others what they need from you, in this situation.

Call out the outlier conditions: On days when you are out, or are logging out early, let others know. What would’ve been evident isn’t going to be, anymore. Plan for that.

Team meetings: Teams will decide on daily standups on Zoom. Make sure you’re there by default. If you aren’t going to be, let others know in advance, and do what is needed to make sure there isn’t a dependency on you in that call. In these calls, talk about what you’re doing that day and what you got done with the day before.

Client calls: Leads will have daily standups with clients; and will update the rest of the team on these. Make sure you’re updated on what’s going on. It’s all too easy to get lost in the details of your own work and lose track of the larger picture.

Team meetings: Teams meet once a week on Zoom.

Townhalls: Townhalls happen on Zoom every Friday at 4pm, as usual.

How you are being productive: Read this for some tips.

Commute! (What commute? Exactly!)

What doesn’t change

Your work: The work itself, deliverables etc. stays unchanged, as does the pace of work

Water cooler talk: All we need is to take it to the #random channel.

Setting up a routine: Getting ready and dressed for work helps, starting and closing at scheduled times helps, taking time off for mealtimes, breaks etc. helps.

What becomes Schrödinger's Cat…in that it changes and doesn’t change

Breaks: You’ll have to be mindful about taking breaks. You can’t wait anymore, for someone to come and call you to take a break. You’ll have to DIY a short walk to maybe first make, and then drink some coffee. Staying hydrated is important and you’ll have to get your own bottles of water and refill them too.

Saying good morning and bye for the day: When you’re logging in for the day, chirp up - not just so others know when you’re on from but also because you don’t feel like you’re alone, working in the void.

Lunch: At noon, take a quick break to evaluate what you need to do, so you’re able to dig into lunch at 1pm.

Outside of office work, make sure you’re set at home with supplies.

Till we’re all back again in the same location, take care of yourselves and those around you. Keep calm, carry on, and don’t panic.