New recording: Producitivity While Working from Home

John Forrister

GTD Connect
Staff member
David Allen, Ana Maria Gonzalez, and I talk about various angles on productively working from home. Topics include communication with other remote colleagues, time and space boundaries, differences between the home and office environments, and more.

Video

Audio
 

John Forrister

GTD Connect
Staff member
As fodder for discussion here, these are the notes I made before the recording, about possible topics we would explore.

Agreements with bosses and colleagues around:
  • work hours
  • response times for different communication tools
  • meeting manners that are different online than in person (mute when typing, video or not, minimize background noise)
Agreements with family or roommates around:
  • work hours
  • where you will work
  • music and/or TV volume levels
  • any changes in childcare and petcare
Agreements with yourself around start/end times, breaks, any boundaries you want between work and personal life.

Develop procedures for doing digitally what was done on paper in the office.
in-tray at home -- ideally you already have this
scanning paper to digital -- get a scanner or a scanning app for your phone
printing -- get a printer if you need one, or collect your To Print files where you can print them at a future date
phone -- check voicemail on your work phone, consider having your work phone forwarded to your cell during work hours

Which communication tools to use?
Asynchronous tools like email, file sharing, CRMs
Synchronous (real-time) tools, such as phones, chat programs, Slack, online meetings
Setting and updating your status (available, in a meeting, do not disturb, away)

For each of the tools, do you expect a different response time?

The social aspect of work is important for many people. Find creative ways to socialize with colleagues even if you're not in the same space. For example, take a mid-morning coffee break on Zoom to talk about non-work stuff, or schedule an after-work Zoom drink with work friends you might normally go out with.
 

TesTeq

Registered
As fodder for discussion here, these are the notes I made before the recording, about possible topics we would explore.

Agreements with bosses and colleagues around:
  • work hours
  • response times for different communication tools
  • meeting manners that are different online than in person (mute when typing, video or not, minimize background noise)
Agreements with family or roommates around:
  • work hours
  • where you will work
  • music and/or TV volume levels
  • any changes in childcare and petcare
Agreements with yourself around start/end times, breaks, any boundaries you want between work and personal life.

Develop procedures for doing digitally what was done on paper in the office.
in-tray at home -- ideally you already have this
scanning paper to digital -- get a scanner or a scanning app for your phone
printing -- get a printer if you need one, or collect your To Print files where you can print them at a future date
phone -- check voicemail on your work phone, consider having your work phone forwarded to your cell during work hours

Which communication tools to use?
Asynchronous tools like email, file sharing, CRMs
Synchronous (real-time) tools, such as phones, chat programs, Slack, online meetings
Setting and updating your status (available, in a meeting, do not disturb, away)

For each of the tools, do you expect a different response time?

The social aspect of work is important for many people. Find creative ways to socialize with colleagues even if you're not in the same space. For example, take a mid-morning coffee break on Zoom to talk about non-work stuff, or schedule an after-work Zoom drink with work friends you might normally go out with.
Great notes! Thank you!
 

TesTeq

Registered
David Allen, Ana Maria Gonzalez, and I talk about various angles on productively working from home. Topics include communication with other remote colleagues, time and space boundaries, differences between the home and office environments, and more.

Video

Audio
Let me once again thank you for (audio)/(video) tags in the episode titles! :)
 

Deirdre

Registered
I especially liked the comments about acknowledging others in the "workspace." My dog will periodically wander up and check on me; if I am on a Zoom call, my colleagues can see him. He is always a hit. Another friend of mine is scheduling 2pm tea - she invites friends to join her virtually for tea. It's a nice mental break and check-in with friends.

So many good things coming out of a crazy time.
 

Melissa Strayer

Minimalissa
As fodder for discussion here, these are the notes I made before the recording, about possible topics we would explore.

Agreements with bosses and colleagues around:
  • work hours
  • response times for different communication tools
  • meeting manners that are different online than in person (mute when typing, video or not, minimize background noise)
Agreements with family or roommates around:
  • work hours
  • where you will work
  • music and/or TV volume levels
  • any changes in childcare and petcare
Agreements with yourself around start/end times, breaks, any boundaries you want between work and personal life.

Develop procedures for doing digitally what was done on paper in the office.
in-tray at home -- ideally you already have this
scanning paper to digital -- get a scanner or a scanning app for your phone
printing -- get a printer if you need one, or collect your To Print files where you can print them at a future date
phone -- check voicemail on your work phone, consider having your work phone forwarded to your cell during work hours

Which communication tools to use?
Asynchronous tools like email, file sharing, CRMs
Synchronous (real-time) tools, such as phones, chat programs, Slack, online meetings
Setting and updating your status (available, in a meeting, do not disturb, away)

For each of the tools, do you expect a different response time?

The social aspect of work is important for many people. Find creative ways to socialize with colleagues even if you're not in the same space. For example, take a mid-morning coffee break on Zoom to talk about non-work stuff, or schedule an after-work Zoom drink with work friends you might normally go out with.
Thank you John, David, Ana Maria for your insights on this topic!

And thanks, John, for this preemptive transcript; it makes sharing key considerations with others in our organizations easier for us.

Melissa
 

John Forrister

GTD Connect
Staff member
I especially liked the comments about acknowledging others in the "workspace." My dog will periodically wander up and check on me; if I am on a Zoom call, my colleagues can see him. He is always a hit. Another friend of mine is scheduling 2pm tea - she invites friends to join her virtually for tea. It's a nice mental break and check-in with friends.
Well done on the creative socializing! And feel free to post a photo of your dog if you'd like to.

So many good things coming out of a crazy time.
Great way to look at it. Most of what I observe is people being kind and helpful, acknowledging we're all human on what is evidently a small world.
 

Marília A

Registered
Loved seeing Ana Maria's face (and office view) for the first time.
It was just a lovely way to spend my Friday evening after a very intense week! and also It felt like I was having a coffee with David (crazy me).
Thank you John and everyone else responsible for this.
 

John Forrister

GTD Connect
Staff member
David also mentioned the he and Kathryn email each other, even though that sounds cold and mechanical. He wrote about that in one of his essays back in 1998. If you'd like to read the original (a less-than-two-minute action), we have just posted it here.

You'll notice that is has some dated references, but the approach is still solid.
 

Deirdre

Registered
Not work but play: Just had a virtual happy hour, 3 computers with a total of 4 people plus one person on speaker phone sharing beer and talking just like at the Pub. Wonderful!
Did that last night with two friends, all of us drinking wine, chatting on Facetime. It was delightful.
 

TesTeq

Registered
David also mentioned the he and Kathryn email each other, even though that sounds cold and mechanical. He wrote about that in one of his essays back in 1998. If you'd like to read the original (a less-than-two-minute action), we have just posted it here.
Using e-mail for passing information and tasks to the person sitting in the same room is better than letting them (tasks, not persons) fall on the floor and disappear. But now we've got modern team management apps (like Nozbe) with convenient task delegation and information sharing features.
 

Dave John

Registered
Also, I have to add, in these strange times it was very comforting to hear three familiar friendly voices calmly discussing the new practicalities of work. It is too easy to get drawn to the latest gloomy reports like a moth to a lantern. It's nice to be reminded that almost everyone is still fine, life goes on, and all the people you know are still out there.
 

John Forrister

GTD Connect
Staff member
Also, I have to add, in these strange times it was very comforting to hear three familiar friendly voices calmly discussing the new practicalities of work.
Thanks for those kind words. We've got more coming, as I'm currently discussing a new topic with Ana Maria. We'll try to rope David into that one as well.
 
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