The world has been hit with one of the worst pandemics in human history, the Corona Virus. It has affected every aspect of human life. People have been advised to practice social distancing which basically means they should keep a respective physical distance from other people lest they contract the virus. Businesses have stopped operating, schools have been closed down, organizations and workplaces have also closed their doors leaving their workers with no option than to work from home.
We at Mobile Web Ghana are doing the same; we are working from home. Working from home, although the idea may appear fun, it comes along with some challenges that if not addressed may reduce the level of productivity from workers that is required to drive the organization’s vision and yield the needed profit. Hence, we decided to have a twitter chat with Enam Ami Agbozo on the topic ‘working effectively from home’. Enam is a Digital Marketing Strategist at Qodehub. She was our guest for the twitter chat and she shared a number of things with us that are very essential in the achievement of maximum productivity when working from home.
I will be highlighting a number of the things I learnt from Enam during the twitter chat. She gave out a number of nuggets that would be beneficial to anyone working from home for the first time or for the umpteenth time. One of the things that stood out for me was her response to the question ‘what tools have been helpful to you while working from home?’. By this question, we sought to know what software or hardware tools she was using to help her better achieve her targets, communicate with her colleagues and collaborate with them as well. She mentioned a number of them and highlighted how they were helpful in her collaboration with her colleagues in the office. Enam said, ‘for communication, we’ve stuck with Slack for team chats & check-ins; Zoom or Skype for video calls & meetings; Basecamp for project management; Google Drive or Dropbox for file & document management. Basecamp also allows file management per project…’. Indeed technology has come to make life easier and bearable. So even in these difficult times we find ourselves in, we need to be abreast with the latest tech products that can help us achieve our occupational goals. The list Enam made in the quote above contains a number of them and what they are used for, therefore I believe people working in different fields and industries can also choose from the lot that which works for and applies to their unique context.
Working from home presents a certain level of comfort because the individual is working from a setting where he/she often retires from work to rest. Most people do not work from home so this presents a bit of a challenge for those who are not used to this. So we asked Enam a number of questions related to how to deal with distractions while working from home, the posture you have to assume to be successful at it and also how to collaborate with your colleagues. In connection to collaboration with colleagues, Enam made a very salient point. She stated that one of the ways to ensure you collaborate effectively is to make the effort to ‘over-communicate’. By this I believe she meant you need to be deliberate about giving information to your colleagues that is lost on them because they are not there with you physically. You need to over-communicate, tell them the slightest detail of what you are working on and also be specific to the minutest detail as to what you expect from them. You are not physically present with them hence you would have to send out enough information to actually make sense to them.
When asked about the exact posture and place in the house that makes it easy to work from home effectively, Enam responded by saying this:
A9. I live in a small apartment with my sister. Thankfully the hall and bedroom are separated. So the hall has become my defacto work space. Since that's where I have a table and chair setup. I work from there 98% of the time. the other 2%, I work from the floor in my bedroom😀😀— #CareerWednesdays Enam Ami Agbozo (@EnamNyamekye) April 20, 2020
Enam was asked how she dealt with distractions especially working from home. One of the things she mentioned was:
A10. For distractions from my phone, I put the phone in 'Do Not Disturb' mode or on days where I'm feeling particularly undisciplined, turn off the phone and keep it in my locker. That way I avoid all interruptions, be it calls or messages. And I'm better able to focus.— #CareerWednesdays Enam Ami Agbozo (@EnamNyamekye) April 20, 2020
This is just a tiny bit of the insightful stuff Enam shared with us during our interaction with her on twitter. If you want more of that ‘good stuff’, just go and check out the Mobile Web Ghana (@mobilewebghana) twitter account for more. I trust that you will learn a lot to improve your productivity while working from home and collaborating with others.