To do our part in distancing ourselves and to ensure we keep each other safe and healthy, our entire team has been working remotely now for four weeks. Our team members are no strangers to working from home; however, doing so for this long is definitely a first for us. 

The shift in structure has taught us a few lessons about how to work best, how to be the most productive, and how to juggle multiple things (and kids) at once. We know a lot of other companies, if possible, are having their teams work from home as well, so we figured it would be a great idea to share a few things we’ve learned these past four weeks. 

Here are five of the biggest lessons we’ve learned while working remotely

Clarity is Crucial 

We love Slack, and we use it often. It’s a great tool to enable easier and quicker communication, which is needed when we can’t just walk over to each others’ desks and ask a question. But, digital communication isn’t always a breeze. Frequently tone and sentiment get completely lost when things are typed, and unless you jam-pack your messages with exclamation points and emojis, a well-meaning request can come off wrong or confusing. 

Since digital communication is probably the most used form of communicating with your team while you’re remote, you must be as transparent and clear as possible when making requests or asking questions. Doing so will eliminate unnecessary back and forth and keep everyone working amicably.   

Light Moments Are Necessary

Things are very heavy right now. We’re constantly being bombarded with Caronavirus this and COVID-19 that. Staying informed is a real battle because if often comes with a lot of fear and anxiety. 

To counteract this, your team must take breaks for happy moments. We’ll send each other pictures of what our individual work environments look like, or what we’re doing to help pass the time being cooped up inside. Sharing these lighter moments with your team helps remind each other that we’re all in this together and that someday (hopefully soon), we’ll all be able to live life as normal again. 

We’ve also started sharing our work from home setups on our social channels. This helps us show our followers what we’re doing to stay healthy and makes for more engaging content.

Teamwork is Everything 

Where would we all be without our amazing team members? We’ve come to rely on one another, and while working remotely, it’s even more crucial that we work together. Every single person has a unique situation, and working from home can be either a harmonious experience, or it can be quite hectic and stressful. Sending a line to a teammate letting them know that you can help them with a project, or asking for help when you need it, can make all the difference. Don’t let the fact that your entire team is working from home cause a break in your team dynamic. Put being helpful first.

Patience is a Virtue

Raise your hand if you’re working from home and also have young children. 

Quite a few of us are in that boat, and boy is it rocky! It’s simply impossible to expect that your productivity level won’t fluctuate if you have children at home with you. Being a parent is a full-time job, and then add another full-time job on top of that, and it makes for quite the workday. 

It’s important that everyone understands the importance of patience. Take a breath and cut your co-workers some slack. We’re all doing our best, and if deadlines have to be moved or if your remote meetings have to be changed, that’s life right now. 

Flexibility is Life

Going hand-in-hand with patience is flexibility. Not everyone has the flexibility gene. When plans or schedules are set, it can be hard for some when they have to be moved around. But right now, building a flexible workforce will get you so far, and save you from a lot of headaches. 

With the pandemic, we decided that it would be best to create and share as much content as possible that focused on how small businesses can deal with what’s happening. This required a major shift in our content strategy, which was already mapped out for the month. But, instead of fight it, we knew that the benefits for our audience would outweigh the inconvenience of moving things around and prioritizing new initiatives. Were we not willing to be flexible there, we would have missed out on an opportunity to help our audience, which is crucial in these times. 

We hope these lessons we’ve learned help you and your team as you navigate working from home. And if you have any other lessons or tips to offer up, let us know!