How to stay connected to your colleagues when working from home
Whether or not you’re a social butterfly, long periods of isolation can bring you down. Here’s how to keep connected to your colleagues even when you’re unable to be physically present in the office.
1. Ditch text chat
Avoid long, lonely hours staring at a screen by ditching email and chat messages for video and phone calls for anything that takes more than a couple of messages to explain. Making this your default method for longer conversations will not only make work more efficient, it can also help you to maintain meaningful relationships with your colleagues.
2. Focus on quality communication
While it’s important to keep conversations flowing, avoid initiating conversations for the sake of it as these can be disruptive for others. Virtual coffee breaks can provide a great opportunity for an informal catch-up, just make sure to check before you call. Organising a weekly team Skype video call at the end of the workday is a great way to unwind with colleagues and reconnect as a team.
3. Engage in meetings
You don’t have to be an extrovert to be impacted by loneliness. If you normally stay muted on calls, set yourself the challenge of sharing a thought or offering a suggestion, and keep your camera switched on. This will help to boost your concentration and keep you feeling connected with your colleagues.
4. Get comfortable with quiet
When working from home for an extended period, there’s no getting away from a certain amount of solitude. Embracing it can help you to re-position your mindset and help you find opportunities to be productive when you’ve just got yourself for company. If you find silence deafening, put on some white noise or relaxing music. Keep your phone out of reach and try tackling those tasks that have been on your to-do list for too long.
5. Help others
We’re social creatures and it’s completely normal to miss the social interactions in the office when you’re working from home. Be proactive in providing opportunities for others to engage. Set up a forum on your intranet to get colleagues talking or arrange a virtual quiz. These small actions can make a big difference at a time when many of us are feeling disconnected.
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