These are unprecedentedly tough times and our heart goes out to unfolding tragedies in India and elsewhere in the world. A largely ignored aspect of this is about millions of Professionals working from home and helping businesses run worldwide. But, with so much despair, disappointments and literally death around it is difficult to keep up the pace with work. As a small effort, we are designing a simple toolkit which professionals can use. Just take a printout, stick to wall, and follow. Best thing you can do is to share it with your colleague and teams. What else can come in toolkit? Please comment and we will add.
Speak out your concerns: Your supervisor, manager, customer, HR they understand unprecedented situations you are in and they are there are for you. So, speak out and share if work pressure is hitting you hard more than ever. They know that probably first time in proverbial work-life balance 'life' is literally life. They will help you.
More than three, is a bad spree: Avoid more than 3 continuous meetings. If you are working with same set of people, work with them to plan a optimal schedule with no more than 3 continuous meetings for team.
Its not just work-life balance, its work-meetings-life balance: Keep a log of time you are spending in meetings and time you are actually doing the work. If people are pulling you in unnecessary meeting politely decline and ask them to write an email/IM to you instead. Work with your teams and target to reduce meetings by 30%
Share ETA as best, most-likely and worst case: If somebody is asking you by when you will be able to complete a piece of work then please share three ETAs (Expected Time of Arrival) to complete - Best Case, Most-likely and Worst case. Don't take pressure even if you are hitting worse timelines.
30 in 3: Block your calendar for 30 minutes for every 3 hours. For these 30 minutes get totally off from the system and phone. Spend time with your family and relax a bit.
Daily stand-up with your family, friends and relatives: Yeah right! that's Agile Term. But, why can't you be Agile with your family! Make a schedule and reserve few minutes daily to get in touch with your family, friends and relatives. These are tough times, don't wait for regret.
Perfection vs Sustainability: Well, you can spend hours and hours making something which is not worth that much of time. Spend that extra time with your family, doing some exercises etc. In routine day to day work don't target perfection but target sustainability.
Start finishing, stop starting: Keep a whiteboard in your work area and create a simple Kanban Board on it (Backlog, To Do, In Progress, Completed). Color code work items and personal items (yes, both are important). Focus on completing things rather than starting new things. This Kanban Board will give you that picture.
Get Mobile: Though it is hard to believe in current times but if your organization has still not get you equipped to complete at least communication and collaboration (for e.g. Office 365, MS Teams etc.) through mobile then drive a movement to get that done.
Keep it shared: Keep all your work in progress documents at a shared location with at least one designated person with access. If in any unfortunate event you have to be out then your office will not be bugging you.