Three downsides of WFH to consider and plan for

Published: Dec 04, 2020

Working from home can be a bonus for many employees – they relish the thought of not sitting on a stuffy train and throwing money away during lunch breaks, ditching the suit and tie and being in the comfort of their own home. Without the distractions of any gossip loving work colleagues, many people may actually find themselves more productive at home, and are able to create a new, fulfilling routine.

However, there are many downsides to working from home, which is something all of us are much more familiar with as a result of the current pandemic we find ourselves facing.

Picture the scene: Your WiFi is on the brink, Sheila next door is having building work done, your children are demanding your time and attention, and you keep looking around you at all the chores that need doing.

What’s actually great about all of this, is that we are all in it together. Working from home can be tough, and below we will go into three of the main downsides for those going through it – as well as some handy tips for what to consider and plan for going forward!

  1. Lack of routine

Working from home might leave you lacking a work/life balance and removing the structure you had before.

You can combat this in several ways, such as giving yourself a fake commute – a walk each morning to start the day right, eating well and at set times, and working within working hours.

The lines between work and relaxation have blurred. Meaning that people are more likely to feel required to answer emails at night and work longer hours. Enjoy your downtime and don’t feel the need to be ‘always on’.

  1. Lack of communication

Being alone and without your colleagues around you can leave some people feeling something is lacking – human connection, socialising.

It’s important to keep the line of communication going virtually, with consistent communications and scheduled online meetings where team members can keep up with what is happening, share ideas and check in on each other.

  1. Lack of motivation 

If the weather outside is frightful, and your bed is so delightful, it may be easy to lose motivation to work from home. 

To combat this, get up at a set time and make your bed, limit your distractions (such as muting your social media), and getting showered and suitably dressed in the morning so you feel ready to conquer the day. 

How can employers help?

Using psychometric assessments, managers and employers can learn about employees traits, and then make sure they are supporting them effectively. For instance, managers should aim to make highly social people feel more connected, and ensure that detail-orientated people have enough structure in their day.

As people’s lives have been impacted in a huge way as a result of COVID-19 and a new working life, employers can also combine psychometric insights with personalized support plans, to help everyone achieve the right work/life blend.