Mind@Works and Three UK: Mental Health & Remote Work
Minds@work organized an event focused on Mentally Healthy remote working in London as well as online on Remo. This was the first of its kind event which had a physical as well as a virtual event happening parallelly. Here’s the highlight video.
Technology has unlocked the possibility to work from anywhere, anytime. Businesses can now engage the most talented people in the world, no matter where they live. Workers can design their working hours around their life, with more flexibility.
For remote workers, days can go by without contact with another human being in the real world. This lack of structure and social isolation is the fast track to anxiety and depression. This can lead to mental health spiraling dangerously downward?
One of the speakers Brittnee Bond, CEO of Remote Collective, was unable to make it for the event and was afraid that she would miss out. But because of the virtual component of the event she was able to make to the online part of the event happening on Remo.
The major issues and their solutions discussed during the event.
Isolation is a big problem while working remotely. People can bump into other coworkers and have a casual chat in a normal office space. But when you are sitting at home working alone or travelling it gets lonely sometimes.
A few of the ways discussed to deal with the isolation were to go to a place where there are people and there’s a community at least once or twice a week. Or when in the city volunteer for the causes you believe in and be part of that community
When working remotely the company culture is of utmost importance. The person running a company should be aware of the problems of working remotely. It was suggested by the speakers that the CEO work remotely for a few days and get the experience. Having the systems and culture in place make remote working healthier.
The culture should be more open and flexible to accommodate the needs of different individuals. Taking into consideration how and when one works best and when they are more likely to make mistakes.
Having a culture of trust is critical for remote workers. The managers and supervisors need to trust the remote employees and the employees need to get the work done. Remote working is a mindset much more than anything else.
Remote workers often feel that they miss out on the water cooler talk and casual part of the work environment. They miss out talking about the shows watched on TV or the date that went bad. The simple things that enable them to blow off steam bond with their co-workers. The way this can be solved is to create moments where people interact with each other in non-official contexts. You can spend the time talking about personal life, favorite actors or just the latest crush. Enabling people to cross-pollinate and building planned spontaneity is the key.
Remote workers usually face the problem of not knowing when to stop. They sometimes go on sprees of working and not taking breaks. This sometimes results in a burnt-out and leads to loss of productivity and lower morale. To avoid these we should take a break from the screens and the time we spend working. Just take a break walk around, stretch your legs. Remote workers need to build discipline in their habits and stick to them. Building a particular area of work and timings not making an exception on them is a good start.
There was an amazing networking in London as well as in Remo. Participants met a lot of new people and made a lot of meaningful connections.
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