PITTSBURGH, March 17, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Legions of workers will increasingly work from home in the coming months, and now is the time to prepare those workers, their leaders, and their organizations to make this work well – and do so quickly. The "Emergency Telecommuting" e-book, available now for free download, offers quick-start tips for 'instant' telecommuters.
"Today's reality has been anticipated since telework first entered the business lexicon," said Debra A. Dinnocenzo, the author and founder and president of VirtualWorks! based in Pittsburgh. "Organizations dabbled in work-from-home options during the aftermath of storms and earthquakes, in anticipation of major events like the Olympics, and during recovery following 9/11. Growth in telework was enabled by technology tools that provided greater access to high-speed, Cloud-based, with increasingly smaller and affordable resources that erased the obstacles of distance. The federal government, an early proponent of the benefits of telework to prepare for times like those we're facing now, ramped up telework across agencies, only to dismantle that preparedness at precisely the wrong time."
"Emergency Telecommuting" offers key action steps for those suddenly telecommuting. Dinnocenzo, suggests that telecommuters should:
- Clarify top priorities, key deliverables, and major objectives with your manager and stay focused on these;
- Avoid the distractions that home work environments provide (including the laundry!);
- As much as possible, identify a suitable workspace that provides the space and quiet needed to work effectively;
- Negotiate family agreements on the time and space needed for your work; and keep in touch with your team and your manager.
While specific rates of full-time telework show increases over the past two decades and part-time or occasional telecommuting is increasingly commonplace, wide acceptance of full-time telecommuting has not occurred. If anything, we've seen recent evidence of declines in support among leaders for telework. Why?
Debra Dinnocenzo explains, "There are several reasons. It's not as easy as we thought. It takes a different, more disciplined approach to performance management. The technology - as is often the case with tech - isn't as user friendly as we'd hoped. And we are social beings who like to be together, with on-screen images or voices from devices not quite meeting our gathering tendencies."
But predictably, today we face a new reality driven by the demand for business continuity despite COVID-19. Workplaces are not the healthiest environment for workers, schools are closing so kids are home, travel is restricted and client meetings must move to other platforms that replace our preferred face-to-face interactions. How can we do this well? And how can employees, leaders, tech support teams, and other collaborators quickly prepare to telecommute successfully?
"While not an ideal scenario with limited time to plan, less than optimal home environments for working, and organizations lacking a preparedness plan to easily deploy, there are steps workers and leaders can take to make the best of current circumstances," she said. Find solutions and guidelines at www.emergencytelecommuting.com.
About Debra A. Dinnocenzo and VirtualWorks!
VirtualWorks! helps organizations learn new ways to work productively in the virtual workplace. We provide employees, teams and leaders with skills for communicating and collaborating effectively in the increasingly virtual work environment. Our areas of focus include virtual leadership, virtual teams, telework, and work-life balance in the digital age. We work with organizations to identify the competencies, develop the skills, and implement the actions necessary for people to work seamlessly across distances. As a result, dispersed teams can collaborate effectively and work together more efficiently.
- Training program, workshop & seminars – all of which can be delivered virtually
- Books, e-booklets & guides
- Coaching & consulting services
- Speaking services
Founded by Debra A. Dinnocenzo in 1995, VirtualWorks! has a rich history of training delivery as a key method to effect change and develop capability within organizations. We design and implement learning programs tailored to organizational needs and delivered via various methods and technologies including classroom training, teleseminar, webinar, videoconference, and virtual interactive worlds. VirtualWorks! also delivers individual and team coaching and leadership consulting in connection with challenges and opportunities in the virtual workplace.
SOURCE Virtual Works!