As many companies shift to remote working environments, you may be wondering how to best adjust to this new style. As a completely virtual company, the ChatterBoss team has compiled some of their best practices for working from home.
It’s important to make sure that you know how much time you’re spending on each task and to manage it appropriately so that you can have personal time for yourself throughout the week. Tools such as Google Calendars and Time Camp are used quite frequently at ChatterBoss to help organize time efficiently. Specifically, we use Google Calendars to block out time in which we are busy and to arrange various online meetings, conferences, and calls with our team and our clients. Having an organized calendar and to-do list helps us improve workflow and also allows us to maintain time for our personal lives, achieving a positive work-life balance.
“ The key to maintaining a healthy work from home routine is prioritizing. Use the tools available to you to get a proactive jump start to your day and week. Utilizing and maintaining your calendar and task lists are important. It may seem like a mundane step to block time or add details to your task manager, but it truly keeps you focused and on time!” - Bobbie Clark, Executive Virtual Assistant
2. Brush up on your communications skills
Working remotely can have its unique challenges because you don’t see your colleague’s faces and/or the tone of voice intended when writing something on Slack or in an email. This is where excellent communication skills come into play. It’s good to understand that everyone works at a different pace, and sometimes at different times because of personal preferences, time-zone differences, and the shift to remote working. Being able to utilize technology to the best of our ability helps us become more productive, especially within a virtual workspace. It helps us maintain a standard of productivity and efficiency. It is important to focus on aspects of empathy, tone, language, and question and listening skills. It’s important to learn how to communicate with different types of people, and different personalities. Being clear and concise is important in order to limit any misunderstanding.
Like we mentioned before, it is great to learn how to utilize tools such as Zoom, Slack, and email to help improve communication with your colleagues. Sometimes it may feel robotic, dull, and lonely, so here are some ways to add a new element into your communication. Gifs are a great way to add personality and character to the conversations that you have. It’s also a great way to add humor into text conversations which tend to lack any emotions. Additionally, virtual social meetings can be created to add a fun and more social twist to the zoom calls and texts. Different social events where you can play fun party games, socialize and have time outside of work will grow the bonds between you and your colleagues.
“Whenever you feel yourself about to write a message that is emotional, consider scheduling time to have that conversation over voice or preferably over a zoom call. So much miscommunication can happen from written text. Technology can be both a blessing and a curse, so choose your modes of communication wisely to ensure they will allow for the clearest form of communication” - Valerie Donohue, Founder of ChatterBoss
“I'm personally a big fan of gifs. With so little actual personal interactions, they help make things a little less robotic. I also like being able to get on Zoom calls with people when they need help with things, send videos to show how to do things, and just asking questions about them and not always about work. I think it's so important to be able to connect personally like you would in a normal office, so I just try to make an effort to chat with people like I would around a water cooler. It can be difficult to make time since there's not a defined space for it like in an office setting, but it's important to make that extra effort.“ - Rebecca Langewicz, Executive Virtual Assistant
3. Utilizing Project Management Tools
Project management tools are a blessing to have because they make organizing projects and work easier. Four of the most popular project management tools are Asana, Jiro, Trello, and Monday. A lot of these tools are visual and intuitive ways to work collaboratively. With these tools, you can manage projects, people, and different tasks in an organized manner. You are allowed to place deadlines and utilize many unique features like data importation, personalized profiles, and real time updates to help maximize productivity. I would highly recommend learning and becoming familiar with one or two of these tools because it can really be an office changer.
Interested in trying out a work from home lifestyle?
Our team is 100% remote, so you can work from wherever you want - your desk at home, a coffee shop, the library, or anywhere else that you feel comfortable. Right now we have assistants that are from all over the world. Our team members are located in New York, Maryland, North Carolina, Las Vegas, and California, and we continue to add new spots to the map due to our ever-expanding team.
At ChatterBoss the team has truly become a family over the years. We always look out for one another and offer help to our co-workers to make sure that no questions are left unanswered. Working virtually is a different experience than working in an office space, but the bonds and relationships of the ChatterBoss team are truly special. We help each other grow and constantly learn new skills from one another. When it comes to any confusion or hardships, help is always available and we strive to make our staff feel at home. The ChatterBoss team has become a family over the years, despite a remote work environment, and you can do the same with your enterprise! Always aim to help out one another whenever possible and try to form deeper bonds.
Launched in 2016, the ChatterBoss team continues to grow every month and we are currently over 30 assistants strong. We are looking for dedicated and skilled virtual assistants to join the ChatterBoss family. If you’re an individual who embodies our core values - problem-solving, transparency, and “we care” - we would love to hear from you. Despite the current Coronavirus pandemic situation, we have been fortunate enough to continue normal operations and have not been disrupted. At ChatterBoss, our remote work structure provides for a flexible yet secure working environment.
To learn more and apply, please visit our careers page: chatterboss.com/careers
Written by Chatterboss interns: