It is undeniable that the past few months have been a little strange, uncertain and stressful. Our "new normal" still feels foreign, and old habits and customs are hard to forgo, such as the simple handshake. However, COVID-19 has changed how we do just about everything in an effort to protect each other.
Had you asked us in December what the new workwear trends would be, I can guarantee that masks or the ever-so-popular dress shirt and PJ pants combo would not have even made it remotely close to the possible list. Other things like Zoom, essential workers, social distancing, physical distancing, or phases rapidly made their way into our daily vocabulary. It's safe to say it has been a little weird around here.
As our workplaces make a drastic foray into the digital world, we are left trying to catch up and develop ourselves to meet the challenge. We have compiled a list of ways to help you make the most of our new digital workspace:
1. Create Your at Home Work Space
For many, a move out of the office and into a home is a great way to save on your commute, but it poses other challenges. Particularly for those that don't have a home office already carved out. You've seen the images floating around, those using makeshift desks, sitting in closets or laundry rooms or having their kitchen tables taken over by computers and files.
Finding a small space to dedicate to your work is key; otherwise, you will find that your work can take over any and every piece of free space you have, particularly if you are still using paper files. Therefore, investing in a small desk may be needed.
Having a dedicated spot allows you to mentally separate yourself from being at home, relaxing or working. Without it, you may find yourself getting distracted.
2. Know When Your Workday is Over
If your usual schedule was 9-5, stick to it. If you usually leave the office at 5, don't let yourself sneak back to your email just before bed or before your morning coffee. Keeping a routine is essential for avoiding burnout and maintaining the structure you once had. As a bonus, it's easier to figure out what day of the week it is.
3. Invest and Prepare for Video Calls
If you are now conducting most of your meetings via video calls, it's best to invest in the necessary equipment. Like having a professional portrait, you want your video to be well lit. Setting up your computer so you face the window is best; if a large window is not available, you should look into getting some small continuous lights. Your computer's or webcam's built-in microphone is almost certainly not great for audio quality. Invest in a quality microphone; today, there are plenty of USB-powered microphones.
Check your background; we cannot stress this enough. We have heard enough embarrassing cringe-worthy stories to last a lifetime. Before every video call, review your surroundings for anything incriminating, and make sure anyone living with you knows you will be on a video call. Use a plain wall, bookshelf or poster, and be wary of mirrors for your background.
4. Update Your Profiles and Bio's
Now that you don't see your co-workers and clients regularly, it's an ideal time to update your portrait for your online biographies and LinkedIn profiles. You want the best impression of yourself to be what others think of and what is readily available.
We offer high-quality portrait packages at extremely economical prices to help you look your best. Our portrait sessions are done with social distancing and the highest safety standards. We offer in-home and in-office setup, so you do not have to travel, and our equipment is thoroughly sanitized between appointments. Outdoor options are also available for those looking to make use of the fantastic summer weather.
5. Consider a Photo Signature
Having your photo in your signature makes emails a little more personal, and they help put faces to names. It's also a great way to make use of your business portrait. Don't let others forget there's a person on the other side of the screen.
For some like us at BusinessPortraits.ca, it is impossible to go fully digital and distant, but we do this to help you make the successful transition and help you and your business succeed when faced with this unprecedented challenge.