It’s been two weeks since our teams have been working remotely across all our offices. For those of you who know us, we as a company have always valued face time. Whether it’s meeting a customer, working on a project or just catching up with the team, in-person communication has always been our first preference. To be honest, the idea of switching to a completely remote set-up did seem a bit unsettling if not entirely impossible.
As we all prepare to adjust to a new normal of working remotely, we wanted to share with you some of the challenges that we are facing and our learnings over the past two weeks. We are a growing business and our hurdles may not always be the same as a large enterprise, but we believe that there is something in it for everybody to learn.
Build a routine
Jump-start your day by building a routine. Getting started is way more challenging when you don’t know what to do. Create a chronological to-do list and rank tasks by importance. We use our resourcing tool to create weekly and daily tasks and assign them each a priority. We then have a short 10-minute daily stand-up to catch up on how things are progressing and where everyone is at. Having a fixed agenda and sticking to it helps cut back on long unnecessary meetings too.
When at work, we’d always pause and take a few minutes to unwind. It would either be a coffee break or just catching up on the latest news on our home countries (perks of working for a company that values diversity). Now that this is no longer an option, we sometimes calendar each other for virtual coffee sessions. The point is, we still take our breaks.
Working long hours without realizing the need to stop is yet another peril of working from the comfort of your home. Set a reminder, block your calendar or start tracking work hours daily so you know when things are going overboard.
Develop your product
This is the best time to complete all those pending tasks that you couldn’t finish due to time constraints. It could be optimizing your webpages, fixing broken links, creating new articles for product support, gathering feedback from your existing customers, or simply innovating on new ideas to improve your product. We have been using our software more extensively now that we work remotely. This is helping us identify areas of improvement and optimize in real-time.
Share the load
If you have a few hours to spare, this would be a good time to reach out to other teams and see how you can contribute to sharing their workload. For instance, we have had a backlog of content translations that have been pending for a long time. It’s surprising how much we have managed to accomplish in the past two weeks with multiple people pitching in from different teams. Little drops of water do make a mighty ocean!
Be it talking to a customer or having a daily, the importance of staying connected cannot be overemphasized. Our extremely motivated sales team has been leveraging technology in organizing their demos and client meetings even while working remotely. Thankfully, we have Zoom and Whereby to our rescue.
We use Taimer Chat for all internal communication and our newsfeed is usually flooded with funny anecdotes and pictures about our kids and pets. It keeps the spirits high in times like these. In our quest for finding amazing technology, we stumbled on this virtual collaboration tool- Glue, how cool is that! With a myriad of tools available these days, working remotely doesn’t mean zero collaboration, it just means embracing new ways of communication. We'll be sharing more on this later.
As Roy T. Bennet rightly said, “Your hardest times often lead to the greatest moments of your life. Keep going”. All of us at Taimer truly believe in this and stand by it. These are difficult times and we understand that the stress, anxiety, and worry is real. It is important to acknowledge it and equally important to be there for each other. Share your concerns with a team member and listen to them, more now than ever. It is extremely crucial to stay calm, be optimistic and keep trying and learning. Always remember, we are in this together.