Welcome to the new world of working remotely. Many say that this is just the beginning and restrictions may tighten but either way with social distancing, self-isolation and smart work practices many workers will be working out of the office for the next few months.
Now the pessimistic view, most businesses will already be looking at financial scenarios for the next 3 – 6 months and will realise that the biggest cost they have is their people. Even the most generous, caring employer has a responsibility to be profitable so jobs could go, more pertinently – your job could go. While we hope this will not happen it makes a lot of sense to consider these five things to help you futureproof your job:
Know your value: your value is not being a good guy or working hard, your value is how your job links with company profitability. It is relatively easy in sales roles, you are either selling or not but in roles where it may be harder to measure e.g. accounting, marketing, HR you need to ensure you know that the work you are doing is helping the profitability of the company, as in times like this many jobs quickly become less relevant. So, make an impact.
Do more: in a time where it will seem easier to do less and blame external factors, this is the time to work harder. Do your own job thoroughly, but also be coming up with ideas to support the senior team to help keep the business running as effectively as possible. One of the best ways to find out your hidden talents is to try new things. Not even the CEO has all the answers, therefore looking at other ideas outside of your job spec will be very much appreciated.
Become an expert on remote working: no one knows it all, but very quickly you can upskill yourself on how skype and zoom meetings work, what they key tips are for staff to work effectively from home or what employers should be doing to support employees using their own laptops. Over the next few weeks there will be lots of firsts as companies do more and more online, ensure you know more than most and become vital to getting things done and keeping business running smoothly.
Positive attitude: Be positive, be helpful and accept that things are different for everyone. Help others who are struggling but understand that coming up with new ideas, and working through difficulties will be a lot easier if you accept that things are different and come at it with a positive mindset. It will also make you a better person to connect with, as positivity and enthusiasm are infectious.
Learn: There may be parts of the job that are put on hold or cancelled or that are just not possible. That means that you have time back in your diary, ensure you are using this to learn/ upskill. We all need to continue to learn, read articles, watch videos, speak to experts. While lots of things may be cancelled you still have the same amount of time, so use it wisely.
Let’s hope that some good can come out of this crisis, where we learn to work more collaboratively and even see how much less travel we need to do, however do prepare yourself for the worst-case scenario and ensure you are seen as a vital resource by your employer.