20 Apr 2021, 12:30 — 7 min read
It's been more than a year now since President Duterte placed Metro Manila and other areas of Luzon on enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
With the announcement of ECQ due to the global pandemic, companies were forced to have their workforce operate from home and proceed with business as usual. Some preferred to work in the office as certain issues arise when they were home. Surprisingly though, many preferred the work from home arrangements. This led to setting up home-office workstations and employers sending equipment to their staffs at home.
Here are some pros and cons of the current and new normal working arrangement. It's been approximately seven months now since I joined my current company. I was hired in the midst of ECQ.
When the lockdown started, I have been actively applying since I was seeing that companies are offering work from home arrangement and it really appeals to me, to be honest. I'm the type who really enjoys setting-up my personal workstation at home since way back in 2012. Why? It allows me to have my personal space like looking for seminars, reading articles & LinkedIn matters, editing photos and videos for film, trading, real estate and attending some business development matters.
In my opinion, home office is essential for you to think, and it serves as personal space for your thoughts to materialize. As for the work from home set up, I am on the pro side if you're going to ask me. Maybe because all of these years I have been setting up my table and laptop at home, I can say that I am kind of used to it and maybe it served as a practice for me to separate office culture at home and work.
I believe most of us in the Philippines prefer this arrangement especially with those who have families. As per FlexJob survey, 51% of participants said that they are more productive with work from home set-up. The reasons can be the following:
Work-life balance is evident in this work arrangement — more time for your family, more time to do household chores. Of course, if the schedule permits this. Working from home does not mean lesser stress, as in some instances there is more work or tasks given. Still, despite the above mentioned, eight hours of work is still required.
Also read: Good health is good business
This is a big factor to tell you honestly. There are times also that you are already exhausted early in the morning in the office. Well, that's because it takes a lot of time going to the office, especially in the Philippines. It's the best excuse as well when you're late — traffic. Whether you're in the convenience of your own vehicle or using public transportation, the travel time is still exhausting. Work from home set up eliminates the traffic congestion which has been discussed as well in one of the hearings in the Senate.
For me I could say that it's viable for you to be productive even if you're working from home. You can have easier access for skill enhancements with external resources like YouTube or Google (since some of the external sites are not allowed to access in our office). Like in my line of duty, I need VBA codes for process improvement projects and automation. Some of them can be Googled, but most of the time, you can just stretch out the codes manually to call it a day.
You can cook and prepare your own meal when you're at home. Now is the time to recover from all of the fast food that you're always ordering at work.
Deep breathing can reduce anxiety and will increase calmness for you to perform.
Now, this is subjective as well. Despite the difference of expenses such as transportation, wardrobe, eating out, car maintenance, etc. This still depends on how you manage your expenses and savings.
There's still a difference when you interact with your teammates at home and at the office. Working from home allows you to lessen the office politics (you know, when you're not good at it), meet with your team virtually than meeting them in a conference room and on the operations floor. Gossips circulate faster in person.
However, there are also cons of working from home; some of the workforce are unable to separate office culture and home.
Well, no need to say more.
That may be one of the struggles especially when doing turn over virtually. I'll be having another article for this one. Here's to give you unsolicited advice when working from home to at least help you reduce your stress and anxiety for this journey of yours.
Take the uncertainty away and structure your day by scheduling the day before. In this manner, you take out the hardest part of your day and paint a map on what to prioritize first (work related or house matters).
You need more oxygen. You need to relax more and it's a prescription. Deep breathing can reduce anxiety and will increase calmness for you to perform.
If your work is done, always turn off your laptop and work on other things. You can enhance your existing work skills, learn a new instrument, attend webinars, work-out, journal your day, invest time to reach out to a friend and relatives.
For what it's worth, working from home is still the best option (for now, maybe longer term). This pandemic may breached a certain blow to real estate and lesser office requirement, it's still best to sustain the fact that you are safe with your family and I know that we will overcome this challenges and God will bless us with answers amidst the uncertainties.
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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy, or position of GlobalLinker
Posted byCarlos Payumo Garcia
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