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Working Remotely – A Weekly Retrospective: One Year Later!

I hope you are all doing well and have been staying safe for this past year.  I wanted to write a follow up at this point to reflect on where things started, and where we are at one year later. 

 

How did this start again? 

It was almost a year ago to this day (as of writing this article) that I received an email from the HR department of my company telling everyone that we needed to work from home.  We were told to take everything we need to work from home off our desks at the office by the end of the week.  When I received this notification, I had already been working from home for the week for personal reasons that week and while I had a hunch that I would be at home for some time.  I had no idea that we would still be at home a year later. 

 

Working from home will be awesome! Right? 

Shortly after work from home started, there was a divide at my company.  There were a number of people who had always been remote and saw no difference.   There were some who embraced remote culture and were happy to be at home and start doing meeting remotely as well as making more regular use of communication tools like Slack.   However, there were also a number of people who found it extremely difficult to move to remote working.  Not being able to have face to face conversation or to try around to ask a question felt like a drastic reduction in productivity. 

A week into work from home, I started the first article of this series.   I kept that series running for seventeen weeks where I shared the things my wife and I were doing to evolve and adapt out house to a work from home environment. 

So, what’s happened since? 

I ended this series of articles when I felt it wasn’t providing any further value.  Things were getting better and we thought we might see the end of work from home within a couple of months.  In my part of the world that was a little pre-mature as I’m still working from home many months later. 

As of July of 2020, we were able to send our son back to daycare, and we opted to do so because we felt our daycare was taking all the right precautions and that has continued to be going extremely well.  This also has allowed my wife and I to devote a full work day to working without needing to split our attention between work and caring for our son. 

Shortly after daycare opening, I found myself struggling with unrealistic expectations from my company.  We didn’t have enough staff to handle all the work and it began to become “expected” for people to work evenings and weekend without proper compensation for this extra effort.  After a while I found this to be too much stress on myself and my family, that I made the tough decision to find a new job. 

Onboarding during the pandemic was a very interesting experience.  My new company did a wonderful job of making sure that everyone felt supported.  My manager and fellow team mates have been very warm, accepting and understanding of personal situations.  Bonus points, I’m encouraged to continue to be involved in the Atlassian Community. 

 

Where are we today? 

If I were to tell my past self where I would be a year from now, I don’t know that he would 100% believe me.  However, I have managed to find a good working routine from home.  My son is still going to daycare.  We have adapted to our current situation, and while we aren’t back to any sort of “normal”, we are doing our best with this situation. 

 

I hope everyone has managed to stay safe, adapt, and continue to find things that give you joy in these continued strange times!

2 comments

Dave Liao Community Leader Apr 05, 2021

@Jimmy Seddon - definitely need to read the earlier segments of your series.

Also, glad to hear you're at a company that respects your time! 💪

Like Jimmy Seddon likes this

Time flies, @Jimmy Seddon! I'm sad I missed your article when published, but I'm happy how all these changes turned well for you and resulted in unexpected new (wolf)challenges.

Thank you for wrapping this up! 

Like Jimmy Seddon likes this

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