A designer working from home

by Erik Briones | April 2, 2020

It has been two weeks now since I was advised by my company to start working from home. I have always thought about working for a company that allows flexible working hours and remote locations, but this one is different.

This is because of the need to. To stay away from colleagues, from general public, because of the coronavirus. So to say that we are now WFH (working from home), is not as simple as it being a location or setup change, but more of a strategy.

Stressful. To be honest. But we live. 🙂

I am not new to doing some work from home as well. I have a laptop, I have a proper work area at home too, with a screen and a Mac mini (very old but still working). Somehow this one is just different, we can’t like take a break from being inside the house to – popping over at McDonald’s or the beach.

This time Work From Home is Staying at Home to Stay Safe.

A necessity.

In the first few days of this setup, I was efficient. I have the tools, I have good internet, I know what tasks I needed to do. However, what I cannot manage are the interruptions. I am getting calls, emails, chats from colleagues while I am working. I get this in the office too, but somehow this time it is a bit more difficult. In an office setting I guess people will see you deep down into work and not bother. Like when I put on my headphones. Here, people do not know that you are actually on call with someone else while they chat with you and ask if you are there.

There are many posts on the internet about how remote teams have been doing it. I honestly have not read most of them. But the gist I get is just to trust that people will work on their tasks.

Communication, or should I say good communication though is the most common denominator. Also, team culture and “feels” if that makes sense. It’s like when we are all blindfolded and somehow we know, we get, what the other is trying to say or do. That thing is more important and should have been nurtured before the need to go remote or – Work from Home.

P.S. I won’t mention the tools much because different companies have different tools they use and they all are for the same thing – Communication. Communicate what the schedule is, communicate what the status is, the design specs, the sprint tasks, the development tech.

Shoutout to Figma for making it too easy for me and other designers and developers to communicate. 🙂