Less than a week yet so lost

Less than a week but still going strong

I started my conversation with a spider and I realized he too is a web-designer. Nearly a week of work from home and we are already here.

Many have been doing it for weeks now but for India, we are still in its primitive stage, in every sense of the word.

Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi has announced a complete lockdown for 21 days so that the country can help curb the coronavirus pandemic. 

With no plan in place, companies are lost.

It’s not just the employees who are working from home it’s the entire family at home simultaneously.

All together at one place all the time. This has its advantages for family time. But for work, it is the contrary as it brings in the baggage of other factors that can affect productivity.

You feel everything is in place, you stocked up all groceries and essentials for a month on the day of the first announcement of the prime minister. All set to work hard for the next month.

But then the next morning you are up in the store not to buy regular groceries or essentials but to stock on the junk food to keep the children at bay, so you can work at peace.

Then your boss is wondering…Kuch to gadbad hai…. That 15 minutes of work still hasn’t been submitted at the end of the day.

Is the internet network prepared for the load?

We have millions of employees working from home due to the pandemic, internet networks are highly strained.

 The husband sets up a video conferencing app to have his meeting. The wife who is also working from home has to use the wi-fi extensively for her research. The children need the wi-fi to stream their movies which again requires extensive bandwidth and data. 

Very soon schools will have to be online too, which will be an added baggage on the internet suppliers.

 Besides the internet connections, laptops and other devices will need to be shared too. 

 Are we prepared for this? 

 The sudden change of events didn’t give anyone time to prepare for any of the uncertainties. 

 This is the biggest mass behavior anyone has seen for a long time and is testing the internet networks of the country.

 With everyone at home, the only form of entertainment is social media. The number of WhatsApp and social media messages going viral is copious.

 The distractions can take a toll on the overall productivity of employees too. The number of jokes and memes forwarded can be a very big distraction while working from home.

And you thought working at the office was distracting…

Here at home children need to be entertained. 

With the maids on leave, all the household work needs to be shared among all family members, so everyone has a task to do at home.

Then the constant juggling of all of the above with work. Welcome to the quarantine.

Unfortunately, the spread of coronavirus has made the situation so grave that the work from home is a reality every parent has to face today.

 Your family can be quarantined for weeks to come so devising a plan suited to all to make it easier for all.

 Smile, you are on camera.

With the quarantine in place, the only way of communication with your team is video and conference calls.

We are so used to chilling in our pajamas while working from home. That putting on that formal suit for a Video call can curb some too.

Besides, you may have the baby crying, the kids quarreling over trifle issues in the background. Pets too can be a distraction with them running in and out or barking while the chat is on.

The Office is coming home, be prepared

Aren’t you thankful you don’t stay in that big house? Imagine cleaning that one with no domestic help.

On the other hand, most of us live in urban areas with small houses, which again brings in the point of the entire family with children and a small area to share.

 Play area, workspace, living space all squeezed in one. 

It’s difficult to differentiate between work and home area. Children have nowhere to play and are quarantined too so do expect them to be playing or just loitering around all the time. Smaller the house the more limited is your work area space.

The best you can do is earmark your workspace with clear instructions to everyone at home.

When the cat’s away, the mice will play. 

Do Indian Bosses trust their subordinates?

The trust factor is a mindset which needs to change in the current scenario of work from home.

If you have followed a certain managerial style for a long time it’s scary to break the system and trust employees while you are not around.

Employees on the other hand, are so used to clear and direct instructions from their bosses, that they find it difficult to work in a more open culture with the freedom to work at your own pace. A more proactive approach from the subordinates too is the need for the hour.

 A hand in hand from both sides is something that can help us move ahead in the current situation. Oh yes…. don’t forget to wash your hands for 20 seconds first.

Statistics state that remote employees are viewed as less productive than in-office employees.

Employees believe otherwise and feel the flexibility provided helps them finish their work on time at their flexible working hours.

But given the current coronavirus scenario, everyone is required to work from home irrespective of their hierarchy in the organization.

Coronavirus isn’t the only virus around

Everyone at home will have access to the same network as your employee. The threat is worse if the laptop or computer user is not provided by the company.

The antivirus software has to be employed in laptops especially if personal laptops are being used.

Employees dealing with sensitive data can pose a problem in such scenarios.

Another aspect that cannot be ignored is the hardware required for work from home.

In many instances’ employees need to use their personal laptops. The speed and the configuration of the same need not be up-to-date or abreast with the latest technology. This can slow down work to a large extent.

Many professions or jobs are not created or accustomed to working from home. No organization was prepared for such a large scale shut down for a long period.

But the work has to go on, we don’t know how long this will last. 

So, no matter what the problems at home, what the speed of the internet or what laptop you use, work has to be done. 

The economy needs to keep going to get the country and the world back to where we started.

We face many hindrances in our plan to execute the work from home options.

It has been less than a week and we are way behind and still have a long way to go. 

On another note, it’s been less than a week and look where we stand, we already know the problems that take us halfway there already and we just have another half to cover. With the right mindset and tools, we will be there soon enough.

The government is taking the necessary precautionary measures and ensuring the support needed is available. 

Work from home is here to stay, for a while now. So, get ready and geared up to face the devil together as one.

Stay safe, stay at home and work from home too.

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