This week is National Work Life Week. This campaign aims to get both employers and employees talking about their well-being at work and work-life balance. Due to the coronavirus, many of us here at Allstaff had to resolve to remote or hybrid working. This National Work Life Week, our Accounts Manager, discusses their experiences working from home and the importance of the work-life balance.
Working from home can be very beneficial to individuals and companies. However, I do think it is on a case-by-case basis. For example, working from home may not be plausible for some due to distracting home environments, inadequate equipment, and slow broadband etc. the list could be endless. Some businesses may not have the necessary resources to be able to offer working from home options. They may not be able to implement virtual workspaces and remote login capabilities.
I worked from home on flexi-furlough throughout the entirety of 2020-2021 due to the coronavirus. Initially, it was slow-moving and nerve-wracking. It took a little while to set up and perfect in a way that worked for me and my home life. I started with my laptop on my lap on the sofa. At first, it was a hard adjustment to make. I quickly came to prefer the situation. The hour I would usually spend commuting, I got back to myself. I could exercise at home before work within my usual commute time and I found myself being a lot more productive during my working day.
Within my role, there is nothing I cannot do just as well remotely as I can from the office. With no distractions, I was able to complete every task of my Accounts job much quicker than I would at the office. To keep me from feeling isolated, I would choose to keep my TV or radio on as background noise. I was in regular contact with the Director to keep up to date with what was going on. Potential daily changes directly impact my role so this was a massive lifeline.
Eventually, I found the need to create a dedicated workspace. I wanted to be able to step away from work and have somewhere to file everything away when not in use. This was very helpful to my state of mind as I am a very tidy person. In my head I still went to work, it was just at a desk in my front room rather than a drive away.
When it was time to return to the office after lockdown I was filled with and anxiety and dread. Could I hold a conversation? Could I interact with others? Would I be okay? Would the drive be too much? I was surprised as to how much it affected me mentally. For the first week or so these thoughts remained until I calmed back down into the new routine. After finding so much success and that happy work-life balance, I have since returned to working from home.
I think if you are a heads-down person who likes to just get things done quickly and efficiently and then move on, working from home can be really beneficial to you. But if you like office banter and like to keep an ear to the ground with what’s going on as it could have a direct impact on your role, or you struggle to switch off and therefore, will struggle to find that work-life balance at home, then being in the office is likely a better preference. Hybrid roles that encompass both options I believe would be the most beneficial model to companies and employees. Do you agree?