Working from home is becoming the new normal. Having a virtual office background with logo, a desk, and possibly a bookshelf in the background are all relatively standard visuals when thinking of a home office. However, what happens when a home office is shared or when you and your spouse or significant other both have offices within proximity to each other?
Working from home is challenging because of the potential noise pollution and distractions. While no one wants to look at their loved ones or children as distractions, they can detract from a productive workday, so how do you cope with when you and your partner work from home: carefully.
Table of Contents
1. Respect Office Boundaries in Your Home
While you can find ways to bypass zoom virtual background requirements, you do not want to find ways to bypass office boundaries. If you and your spouse or significant other work in the same room, make sure there are clear boundaries. It is too easy to distract one another, so be sure to figure out how you can best work separately together.
2. Make the Most of Your Lunch Breaks
After spending hours in front of virtual office backgrounds, it is natural to want a break. When taking your lunch break, take them together. Lunch is a time when you can talk to each other because it does not affect your productivity. However, make sure you eat and stick to a schedule. If your lunch is 30 minutes, do not stretch past that limit. Make sure you are back at your desk and logged in by the time your 30 minutes are up.
3. Set Rules
Before you and your significant other start working from home, both parties need to sit down and discuss expectations and rules. Do not assume your partner knows what you want or expect. Write it down. The rules should contain office hours, quiet hours, lunch and other breaks, and anything else you feel is important.
4. Separate Work Stations or Systems
Do not work from the same desk or computer, even if you both work in the same room. Each of you should have your own workstation and computer. Creating independence through separate workstations helps signify the importance and independence of each of your jobs and positions. Additionally, make sure that your workstation is conducive to your progress and productivity. Having an individualized workspace can improve efficiency and motivation.
5. Get Headphones
When working in the same room together, you will inevitably run into noise issues. To ensure that the sound of background meetings does not interfere with your workday, invest in a pair of noise-canceling or Bluetooth headphones. You should also make sure that meeting times are scheduled so that you both do not have meetings simultaneously.
Working from home can be a blessing. However, productivity may suffer when you and your partner work from home. If you and your loved one are going to start working from home, it is best to discuss and plan for any inconvenience.