Agreements with Family and Friends
Just as team members need to respect each other’s time away from work, It’s important for family members or roommates to respect the time team members spend working. Coach team members to set agreements with family and friends about this.
For example, while it’s great to be able to run a quick errand or pick up a sick child at school when working from home, if a spouse is constantly interrupting to ask where the screwdriver went or if they can stop work to go get some milk, completing tasks that require long stretches of concentrated time becomes nearly impossible. Creating a dedicated workspace can make it easier for family members to live up to these agreements because when the team member is there, it’s obvious to everyone that they are working and shouldn’t be disturbed.
Work rituals are another tool that can help set a boundary between your work and personal life, so it’s a good idea to set up a time for team members to share them with each other. Some people may take a brisk walk before work or do a full workout. Others may have a special mug that they only use during work, or they may shut down the laptop, turn off the lights and close the door to the home office at the end of every day. The specific habit isn’t as important as doing the daily rituals, because, again, they divide the time and space between work and leisure.
Working remotely does not mean working all the time. By coaching team members to set clear boundaries between work and home and to respect the boundaries that others have also set, your organization can run on a work-from-anywhere model in a way that’s humane and respectful to everyone.
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