HR pros from Google, Drift and PandaDoc share #1 WFH tips

Remote Work

April 30, 2020

Cass Vilgrain

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5 min

Over the past few weeks on our podcast, The Work From Home Show, we’ve had the opportunity to talk with some awesome HR pros from a variety of companies, including Google, Drift, and PandaDoc.

People having a virtual meeting where they share tips on WFH. WFH doesn't have to dilute your workplace culture.

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Over the past few weeks on our podcast, The Work From Home Show, we’ve had the opportunity to talk with some awesome HR pros from a variety of companies, including Google, Drift, and PandaDoc. At the end of every episode, Nikki, our Work From Home Show host, asks our guest the same question: "What is your number one tip for working from home?" And here are the answers!

What's your number one tip for working from home?

Make a list, make a schedule, take breaks

-Cornell Verdeja-Woodson, Global Head of Diversity and Inclusion, Google

I would say that one thing that helps me is getting up at the same time I would have when I was going into the office. Then I would map out what my day looks like. I have a list of the things I need to accomplish, and I get those done. So make sure that your day is still structured. It's very easy to be watching TV on the side – and that’s OK, but have it structured so you know that from 1 pm to 2 pm you can take a quick hour break to watch that latest episode of Judge Judy, and then come back.

Transition into your workday with an activity

-Robin Corralez, Global Vice President for Human Resources at Pandadoc

My number one tip is to start your day with a transition into work. Find something to do before you begin the workday. For example, I go for a walk with my daughter each morning. We bust out either a bike or a stroller and we go for a walk to decompress between getting out of bed and getting on the computer. There have been times where I roll out of bed and go straight to my computer, and I feel like there's no transition. Find a way to ease yourself into working; whether it's doing something physically active or mentally active. It's a good way to help you maintain your mental attitude and be refreshed each day. Hear the podcast.

Separate home life from work mode

-Dena Upton, Chief People Officer at Drift

Set a schedule and have a space where you go to work that is separate when you’re off the clock. Find somewhere you can go, mentally, to say “I'm in work mode right now,” or “I'm off right now.” It doesn't have to be a huge space, but even if it's just moving over to one section of the house. This means you're still bringing those routines and rituals into remote working that you would normally do if you were going to the office. Hear the podcast.

Give structure to your day

-Anette Ceraficki, HR manager for Getty Images

You have to figure out how to structure each day. It might look different if you have a family or if you have other commitments, but without structure you might work all day long. On certain days, I build in two hours to focus on specific projects because work time like that needs to be planned when we don't have a “work” environment to support it. Hear the podcast.

Connect with your team

-Jerry Gratton, Founder and CPO of Trailblaze Partners

My number one tip would be to make a schedule. The day can just sort of “go by” when you're at home. So, make a schedule and make sure that there's a lot of time for connecting with your team members. For those of us that like to be around people, that's the stuff that makes work actually work.

Just because you're working from home doesn't mean you have to be isolated. In your calendar, build lots of check ins with team members – and not just your leader. You have conversations at people's desks during the day when you're at the office, use video chat to do those kinds of things face to face. Hear the podcast.

Self care is important

-Michelle Berg, CEO of Elevated HR

Set boundaries. I feel guilty if I'm not giving enough time to work or I'm not giving enough time to my family. So, make sure you're still setting those boundaries when you're working from home. I tell my kids I'm working 8:00am to 5:00pm - after that, you have my full attention.

As a mom, don't forget to set time for you. Because it's not just about work, and it's not just about being a mom, self-care is so important right now and it's OK to be selfish. Hear the podcast.

Keep on moving

-Tom Morin, speaker, author, coach and consultant at Work Feels Good.

I have worked from home for a long time. It wasn't uncommon for me to not move from my computer for four or six hours, and when I get up to move, I would be in pain and stiff. I started setting alarms on my phone that go off every half an hour. Then when an alarm goes off, I’ll stand up – even if I have nothing to do. I'll go get a drink of water. I’ll bring in the garbage bins from the street. I’ll sweep off my deck. The number one work from home tip for me is to keep moving. Hear the podcast.

We hope these tips were useful. I mean, these people know what they are talking about! We know we enjoyed chatting with all of them and plan on implementing many of these tips ourselves! As we all go through this together, we are all discovering how to navigate these times both personally and professionally, and we hope these tips can help make this navigation a little smoother.

If you are interested in hearing more from these and other awesome HR pros, check out The Work From Home Show. We dig deeper into the challenges and benefits of working from home, and the strategies companies are using. We also talk about “what’s next,” to help you be ready for how the workplace may change in the post-COVID-19 world. Not to mention, you'll find out which shows these HR pros say are binge-worthy!

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