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Working Remotely – A Week Two Retrospective

This is the second post in a series of articles I will be posting while mandatory work from home is in effect.  My previous article is posted here

My objective in doing this is not only to review what went well/didn’t for myself and decide on making changes to make things better for my own situation, but I’m hoping that others might benefit from reading this and it my help someone else that is struggling with similar issues.

I’m pleased to report that this week was significantly better than last week let’s dive into things!

What went well:

  • Last week I made the decision to physically separate my work-space station and my relax/video gaming station. This physical separation really helped with the mental separation and I was in a much better place mentally at the end of the day.
  • My wife and I also decided to give ourselves 2 hour dedicated blocks of watching our son to give the other some focused work time. This was fantastic!  Both of our companies are fantastic as they are sympathetic and understanding to our situation and are more than supportive of our need to balance this with our work.  As much as I felt like I wasn’t doing as much work, the data showed that by changing to this model, I was much more productive with dedicated blocks of work time then I was previously,  where it felt like I was working harder with less focus.

  • I still took our dog for a walk first thing in the morning which was great for getting myself set for the work day and thinking about what I wanted/needed to accomplish that day as well as being able to sub-consciously think about unsolved problems and how to resolve them.

  • We also still took a dedicated lunch break which was really nice as it gave us a break from the work day and since our son goes for a nap after lunch we are able to both get some focused time for a couple of hours after lunch.

What didn’t go so well:

  • By using two different rooms on two different floors in my house, I only have one ergonomic chair and I wasn’t going to sacrifice the comfort between the two so I was lugging my chair between both floors at the beginning and evening of the day which while not terrible was not ideal.

  • Because I don’t have as many extra-curricular activities, I haven’t been getting as much exercise as I would like, and with a full home gym setup I want to make more of an effort next week to using the treadmill and or weights to make up for that.

What did I change:

  • My wife and I don’t get food from restaurants very often (probably less than one a month).  However, there are a few local restaurants (I’m not talking about chains like McDonald’s) that are still open. We have decided that we will be ordering lunch or dinner once a week to support these local businesses.  It’s not much but we figure something is better than nothing and we’d like to try and help make sure these fantastic local businesses can survive the COVID-19 situation.

  • Near the end of the week my company announced that we would all be working from home indefinitely. While that was a little disheartening, they also offered that if anyone wanted to take additional office equipment (monitors or chairs) to augment our home office setups, we just needed to co-ordinate with HR to make sure everyone was entering the office at staggered intervals.  I took this opportunity to grab my chair from the office, so I had a second permanent char for my “home office setup”.

What will remain the same:

  • Most of what I mentioned in the “What went well” are items that will remain the same. All in all everything that I have been changing has gone well.

This week my morale was in a much better place than last week.  I have decided to look at the silver lining(s) of what has been presented to me. 

There have been several things I have never gotten to be cause “I’m too busy with other commitments” to have enough time to learn some new things.  Now that I don’t have as many things going on, I’m taking advantage to do some self-improvement and learning that I otherwise wouldn’t have time for. 

For example, I have started doing some streaming of game play where I have learned how to capture input from multiple sources and record or stream the footage. I see this as a transferable skill that I might want to use as a part of hosting an Atlassian Community Event in the future to make it more available for people that would like to be a part of the event but can attend in person.

I’m really enjoying seeing how I’m able to improve my situation week by week and I hope that some of the things I have discovered in my retrospectives will help others improve their own situations. 

Until next, Stay Alert Stay Safe!

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6 comments

Definitely like the idea of a streamed ACE, would be great to get people from all across the globe involved!

Like # people like this
Jimmy Seddon Community Leader Mar 30, 2020

Actually @Andy - PTC Redundant ran the Rotterdam ACE last week in a virtual format that I was able to join.  It was really neat to be a part of a Community event happening half way around the world!

Like Andy - PTC Redundant likes this

Was absolutely great to have you there @Jimmy Seddon 🌟👏 
We've now had two so far and they've been awesome! I'm also renaming them vrom ACEs to AVEs !
Because, you know... we're now VIRTUAL! 😉

Our third AVE is this Thursday (see below), the 4th is in the pipeline for the week after and we have enough content for 8-10 more. Crazy busy.

You, @Helen Griffiths {Capgemini} and everyone is welcome to join ! !

https://ace.atlassian.com/events/details/atlassian-rotterdam-presents-working-from-home-efficiently-webinar-3-power-administration/

Like # people like this

Fabulous! Consider me signed up @Andy - PTC Redundant :)

See you both Thursday!

Like # people like this

Virtual community events sound awesome. The closest one to me is a 2 hour drive and since most of the stuff happens on the weekdays, I have never been able to attend.

Like # people like this
Taranjeet Singh Community Leader Mar 31, 2020

Nice article @Jimmy Seddon !

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