Are you suddenly a remote worker? Let's figure it out together.

04 April 2020

Hey there - I’m Mike Bifulco. I’m a programmer, designer, entrepreneur, author, and podcaster… and I’ve been working remotely as the Technical Director for Gymnasium (an online code school) since 2015, contributor to Workfrom since 2016, and cofounder of smpl (software for independent coworking companies) since 2017.

My guess is that if you’re reading this, you’re a newly remote worker, due to the rapid and terrifying expansion of the COVID19 Pandemic. I’m not here share medical advice; if that’s what you’re after, there’s far better places to look.

This publication is meant to help all of us who are suddenly tasked with doing our job from somewhere uncomfortable. Let’s talk about working from home.

I’ll be sending out periodic updates with some stream-of-consciousness thoughts on working remotely, or living in the world in 2020, or being human… whatever feels like it makes sense.

Primarily, I’ll share a few things which might be helpful to you right now.

Stuffing work-life into your home-life

As I see it, making remote work work isn’t easy. It took me quite a while to get used to. Save yourself some trouble, and do these things first:

  • 🖥 Separate work from home. When you’re working, you should feel like you’re working. Don’t set up in front of the TV with Netflix on. Give yourself a nice, clean place to work from, and situate yourself there only when you’re working. If you live in a small space, this may mean transforming your coffee table or dining table to work-mode during your working hours.
  • ⏲ Give yourself a schedule. Do you normally work from 9-5? Make it so, at least to start! Remote working can mean an extremely flexible lifestyle, for sure, but it will probably also cause a massive dive in your productivity, at least at first. Do yourself a favor and stick to your normal work hours for a few days, until you get into the swing of things.
  • 🗣Communicate with your people. If you share your living space with other people, it’s best to be extremely forthcoming about what you need to get work done. Don’t do well with distractions? Explain that to them. Do you need to be sure your kids won’t barge in on video calls? Tell them! Communicating is fun and nice, and you’re going to need to do a whole lot of it.

That’s all for now. If there’s anything I can do to help you or the people that matter to you figure this all out, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line @irreverentmike.

(If this was helpful, I’d love it if you’d share it with someone who might also like it!)

You can also subscribe to my newsletter Tiny Improvements here.

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© 2020 Mike Bifulco
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Disclaimer: 👋🏽 Hi there. I work as a Developer Advocate at Google. Content on this site contains my own opinions, and does not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.