As a remote working professional for many years (I need both my hands to count the duration 😊!), I have had the opportunity to successfully support my customers remotely from my home office. I have had my home office set-up with all that I would need and am proud of how productive I have always been, while being able to maintain strong relationships with my clients and colleagues alike. Now with the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) — the respiratory illness that has forced businesses and schools to operate virtually, the playing field has changed. Those of us in the technology space have our remote routines down pact, in addition to those for whom a virtual workstyle is novel, now have an added full-time responsibility of caring for our children in addition to be their teachers. Living in VA, our schools will continue remote learning through the end of the school year, pushing me to figure out how to best navigate all that I must do for the coming months.

Delivering on my professional responsibilities, along with ‘Mom-ing’ has definitely had a learning curve, but there are a few tips and tricks that have worked for me and that I hope by sharing will be helpful to you as well:

Best to start with the big tasks for the day: Such as presentation you need to finish, as early as possible. If you have caring responsibilities: such as looking after a buzzing brood of young children – some things are going to be out of your control, but you’re going to be at your freshest in the morning. Once you’ve got the tasks that require the deepest thought out of the way, you can switch to the smaller, more reactive tasks (including checking non-critical emails, etc.)
Lock in a routine and stick to it: Line up your day to set a schedule for emails, meetings, how much to accomplish while the kids are doing their work. Depending on the ages of your kids, setting a schedule for them is ideal as well as it keeps everyone on track and feeling accomplished.

Exercise daily: Some level of daily exercise, from playing catch with your kids, taking a daily work to following along on a fitness video using your favorite app or YouTube or going for a long walk. These small routines can help you boost energy, productivity, improve your mood and sleep better overall. If you do any of these exercises with your kids, it become another bonding activity which can’t be beat!

The internet can be your enemy: Social distancing would be a lot harder without the internet. But if you’re going to be effective, you’ll need to quarantine yourself from social media and chatting with friends. Of course, professional networking via LinkedIn may be necessary, but try to set a schedule of times where you will avoid Social Media all-together to ensure you are on track. Scheduling evening and weekend Zoom gatherings have been a great way for me to catch-up with my social network during my downtime.

My organization, RKMC, works closely with their employees to ensure we have the right tools in place to effectively support customers and seamlessly continue collaboration with colleagues during this uncertain time. Moreover, keeping an open line of communication and setting realistic timelines with Managers will help us handle any situation effectively. Good luck to everyone as we try to navigate what we hope will be a new, temporary normal. Stay safe, healthy and productive!

Here are some additional links to resources and articles that I hope will be helpful:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/growth-center/resources/how-to-work-from-home-and-look-good

https://blog.zoom.us/wordpress/2020/03/09/working-from-home-tips-to-meet-like-a-pro/

https://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts

https://kids.nationalgeographic.com/explore/books/the-learning-framework

RKMC hopes that you and your loved ones are remaining safe and staying healthy. We are committed to following the developing situation with Coronavirus (Covid-19) and our commitment to providing the highest level of service remains. We strictly adhere to and follow the latest guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. All of our employees, contractors and visitors (including applicants) are asked to read and follow their instructions found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html.

 

During this national emergency, RKMC is committed to keeping you informed of any changes to our services. That said: Nothing is more important than health and safety. Please know that we are taking the necessary steps to minimize any health risks to our teammates, our clients and our communities by maintaining a remote work environment until further notice. In short, RKMC’s main focus is protecting our clients and associates during the COVID-19 outbreak and providing you with the same level of specialized service you have come to expect from us as your strategic partner.