10 Things to Do Differently When Working from Home

As we approach a year of working from home, it’s time to revisit some of the best practices for remote working. The Advanced Workplace Institute (AWI), part of Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) – a firm with 28 years in managing remote teams – released a series of tools to help organisations manage dispersed workforces in 2020. However, they still bear considering today to ensure your workforce remains healthy during continued remote working:

1. Spend time socialising with colleagues when you’re apart

Stay in touch with what’s going on in their lives to build cohesion and closeness.

2. Make your activities visible to colleagues

They can’t see you physically, so make sure they know what you’re doing and if you need support.

3. Jointly agree on how to run virtual meetings

Video calling can help to see how people are and how they react – we need more feedback when we are apart.

4. Take responsibility for maintaining relationships

Find out what colleagues need & share what you need – don’t leave it to chance.

5. Overtly demonstrate you can be trusted by delivering on your promises

Trustworthiness can be more difficult to judge when you’re apart.

6. Go out of your way to make information available to people

It’s harder to track information down when you’re working apart.

7. Critically review your own communication style

Without visual cues and careful listening, we overlook what helps or hinders others from being their best.

8. Make sure people know about your expertise

Virtual teams have fewer opportunities to demonstrate/learn about each other’s knowledge and skills.

9. Understand each other’s personalities and preferences

Work on accommodating differences and not letting distance divide you.

10. Offer emotional support and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

“There is a lot we take for granted when we’re in the office. When we’re working away, we need to consciously develop new leadership and workership practices,” says Andrew Mawson, founder of AWA. “Once the ‘honeymoon period’ of home working is over, teams and leaders will need to develop new practices, acquire new skills and make new agreements with family and people they share their homes with in order to remain productive and focused during this challenging time. Organisations should see this time as an opportunity to upskill their workforces to be effective working away. The world of work is never going to be the same again.”

Andrew Mawson

Andrew Mawson

Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA)
Andrew Mawson is leader of global workplace consultancy Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) and founder of Workplace Week. From a general management career in the IT industry, his unrelenting curiosity for the transition to new models of work led to the founding of AWA in 1992. Since then, he has worked with some of the world’s leading organisations on their journey to explore and implement new forms of working and workplace.