How SecureLink Handles Coronavirus: Tips to be Successful While Working from Home

March 19, 2020//Tori Taylor

Last Updated: November 12, 2021

Whether you call it COVID-19 or coronavirus, it has probably disrupted your life in ways both big and small. One of the biggest disruptions (besides not being able to go to restaurants and bars…) might be a switch to working from home full time. Here at SecureLink, it was definitely a switch up for many. So, we decided to ask people around the office (well, via a Google Form) how they’re dealing with working from home, tips and tricks to making sure you can still be on top of your work, and what they look forward to most once we can all go back to the office.

SecureLink employee Ellen Neveux and her dog Beans
How I (Ellen Neveux) get to work from home, with my dog Beans.

Keep reading for some helpful tips and tricks to make your work from home situation the best and most productive it can be while we all try to figure out how to deal with this very weird (we are in Austin, after all) situation coronavirus has put us in. 


How to work during work from home: Start your day off right

For those who responded to our internal questionnaire, nearly half of us are dealing with our first-ever work from home situation– which can be overwhelming. So, how do you make sure you actually get the work done at home, when home used to be the place you didn’t work?

A lot of our astronauts, if you will, stick to their routine. Sure, we don’t have to make the commute out to the Hill Country, but the routine reminds us that it’s a workday and not a weekend. That can include anything from waking up at the same time, to putting on “nice” clothes and makeup, to exercising before work. Oh, and a lot of us still rely on caffeine.

Our suggestion: Find what works best for you that makes you successful in the office. For me, it means starting my day off by walking my dog and carrying on the day as usual (full disclaimer, I do get to wake up later to walk my dog than if I went to work, so I can’t be too mad)! And, a lot of the office agrees with me! Nearly 65% of respondents agreed that no longer having a commute was their favorite part about working from home (followed up by nearly 10% saying waking up later)!


Making virtual face-to-face work

A lot of us crave having the in-person meetings (except for those meetings that definitely could have been an email) and to make jokes with our coworkers (dare I say friends?) during the day. So, how do you optimize your communication with your coworkers while working from home? We rely on video chat (with the camera on!) and many, many chats filled with GIFs to explain how we really feel about social distancing. We’ve even done some virtual happy hours (St. Patrick’s Day did fall during this time period, so you have to understand).

Our suggestion: Do your best to fill in what would be face-to-face interactions with video or chat (with GIFs) so that you can keep up spirits and jokes that would happen in the office! I would be lying if I said I haven’t randomly video-chatted my coworker to tell them a story because telling over chat just wasn’t going to cut it. Since our culture rocket does include “make it happen” we’re doing just that– we’re making it happen. 

SecureLink employee Nick Darbonne's dog, Kaydeaux
Nick Darbonne’s (Senior Customer Onboarding Specialist) dog, Kaydeaux, is loving the extra time with her dad!


Tips and tricks to make work from home successful

Sure, it can be hard. There’s laundry to do, dishes to clean, a bed to lay in, and a TV to watch. So how do we stay on top of it? Our team had a lot of great and helpful tips! I’ve listed some of them that are more “out of the box”:

  • Use a separate room or table for your office so your mind goes into work mode. Do not work from bed! Also, try to go outside to walk around once or twice during the day.
  • Clean your house the night before, it’s too tempting to just “pick up a little” during the workday.
  • Set boundaries with kids/roommates/partners for work vs. play spaces. One of our team members adds a “loading” door hanger to remind his kids before they bust into his office area!
  • There is always something to be working on or things that have been put on the back burner. With less commute time, this is a good time to get caught up and finish projects that need attention (after work hours or during break times. Our team suggests 10-15 minute breaks to keep their sanity).
  • Set specific times for those “distractions” at the beginning of the day – this way it’s not nagging at you. For instance, if you know your dog(s) will need two walks, start your morning by looking at your calendar and blocking off the time I’ll need to take them. Also – when the workday is over, shut down your computer! It’s important to keep the separation between work life and personal life, especially when they feel so meshed together!
SecureLink VP of Business Development Fred Smith's WFH setup
Fred Smith (VP of Business Development) nice work from home set up! He did admit the mini-fridge is behind him!


We miss you, SecureLink!

I (and I think I could even use the royal “we” in this situation) are already looking forward to getting back into the office once it’s deemed safe. What do we miss? Our coworkers (friends!) and the delicious food from Slinky’s. We love wearing sweatpants while we work from home, and it’s allowed us more family time without the commute, but there’s something special about the wonderful (and slinky) people that work at SecureLink.

I hope these tips and tricks have helped you learn something about how to work efficiently at home, while we all work from home for the foreseeable future. Do you have any tips or tricks that make work from home successful for you? Let us know, we’d love to keep our list updated!

Oh, and please don’t forget to wash your hands!

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