As you read this you may be working remotely from home. Not surprising as several industries have instructed their workers to stay in place and work from home as the world and our communities seek to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Here are some critical practical ways to help you maximize your time working outside the office.
- Create a daily schedule. Structure and routine are keys to coping with the logistical and emotional challenges inherent with the coronavirus outbreak. Look back at how you managed your daily routines just one-month ago. You may find yourself with some significant buffer time no longer commuting to the office, engaging in your typical group meetings, church or social gatherings. An idle mind is especially vulnerable to anxiety, depression, and fear. An established daily routine is practicing good mental hygiene. It may be wise to write down your daily routine.
- Get out of bed and get dressed. You’ll find you feel much better when you’re showered, prepped and fresh for the new day. Wearing your sweats all day sends the unspoken message that you’re not ‘doing business’. Dress comfortably but with nearly the same standards you would observe in the office or when meeting clients.
- Respect your workspace and hours. Hold yourself to a work schedule that nearly mirrors your typical workday. Avoid having the television on during your tasks as it can easily distract you and suck you into a spiral of negativity. Limit your consumption of social media as well for the same reasons.
- Stay connected. Communicate regularly with your coworkers and manager as you typically would when in the office. This will require utilizing some new methods beyond merely using email. Teleconferencing services like Zoom allow for up to 100 simultaneous connections while smaller-scale meetings may be accomplished using Skype, Google Hangouts, Slack, or GoToMeeting to name a few.
- Create a workspace in your home. If you already have a home office space mission accomplished. If you don’t work with the members of your household to establish an agreed-upon spot where you can work without distractions and noise.
- Don’t stop calling prospective borrowers. Using your CRM (like Reverse Focus’ Sales Engine) or wherever you’re saving leads. You may think they don’t want to hear from you but actually many if not most will. Interest rates are low, home values remain stable, and older Americans are now seriously considering their long-term economic outlook, especially retirees who have seen their retirement portfolios decimated. Instead of a home visit try emailing them a short video using Loom or other screencasting tools so you can show them what you typically would in person.
The key is don’t stop working, engaging in sales activities, working regular hours, and keeping some semblance of a daily routine. Our mantra during this crisis: improvise, adapt, and overcome.