So you have recently made an abrupt transition to the remote workforce. Let me be the first to welcome you to remote work club! The first rule of remote work club is: get that hot bod into some sweatpants! Try to keep it professional from the waste up, it’s not time to go Mad Max just yet. (Maybe in week 2?)
Okay, maybe that’s not the first rule of remote work club. All joking aside, you absolutely should set up some rules for yourself to stay productive. This way you can continue to call yourself a “functioning” alcoholic.
Keep a Schedule
While you’re protecting yourself from the virus by staying home, you are now in serious danger of snacking all day. The kitchen is literally right there and you can microwave all the fish you want during the workday! But did you know that unlike binge watching Netflix, constant snacking is actually bad for you?
To prevent getting super fat, make yourself a schedule and stick to it. Never eat at your desk and take scheduled breaks in a different room. (Warning: The scheduled breaks should NOT take place in front of an open refrigerator.) Treating your home office like a real office will help you separate your work from your snack time. You’re going to have to put those pants back on eventually.
Another hazard of working from home is overworking from home. Keeping a schedule will help you avoid “getting in the zone” until late in the evening. If you need direction, use alarms on your cell phone throughout the day to help keep you on schedule. And seriously, quit when it’s quitting time. Netflix needs you.
Conference Call Etiquette
Communication is hard but my Spanish is pretty good once I’ve had a few Pina Coladas! Unfortunately, drinking during the workday is frown upon so we must find other ways to communicate while
working from the abyss remote working like total professionals.
The good news is we’re about to find out which meetings could have been emails after all. The bad news is that the ones that can’t be emails are now online. If you haven’t been challenged to an online meeting yet, you will be doing that battle soon. Remember, there is absolutely no one to stop you from wearing a tiara during your video conferences.
It’s hard to interject during a virtual meeting so I recommend you put yourself on mute and spin around in your chair sighing loudly. There is never any reason to speak on a conference call unless you hear someone say your name. In that case, just say “yes”. There is literally no reason to ever talk during a conference call. You also do not have to listen because someone will almost always email you the action items afterwards.
If it’s a video call you will learn that some of your coworkers have dogs. And dogs fucking love video conferences for some reason. If you have a dog, just let him sit in front of the camera. No one wants to see you anyway and your dog’s presence is just as effective as yours. In fact, no one you work with will ever be as interested in you as they are in your dog. You’re welcome.
I experience every phone call as an act of violence. I hate phone calls and I believe that I am fantastic at communicating in writing. But I am not and neither are you! If you are requesting anything that takes more than one (1) sentence to explain, it’s phone call time.
Don’t try to slack someone detailed requests, no one wants to read. Orders should always be dictated and you are a dick, so pick up that phone! You will also quickly realize that slack can and will be easily ignored. (I highly recommend this!) If your co-worker is ignoring slack then you cannot be sure that they received and understood what you said. You can’t have that. Your bullshit needs their attention right the fuck now. Mostly so you can forget about it and move on to your other bullshit work stuff.
So those are my work tips for the modern savage. In the long days of isolation ahead, you’ll have plenty of time to think about your own remote working tips and drop me a comment. Until then I will be remotely working from home… and probably crying. Even though none of us will ever be out of the office again, read my out of office messages which are just as savage.