Tag: routines

An Honest WFH Experience – subjective routines

An Honest WFH Experience – subjective routines

In my previous post I highlighted what physical set up I use in order to get the most out of working from home (WFH). But that is only one half of it. You can have the best set up in the world, but that is no guarantee to successful remote working.
So here I’ll highlight the subjective/non-physical side to working from home which I believe makes it work, and work well.


I’m putting this one at the top of my list. Personally I think this is key to being able to enjoy working from home. You must enjoy your job, and coding is fun (when it works…), but if that’s it then even that can become dull. You’ll get those crap days where nothing works and if you only enjoy the coding, then where are you? 🌧 ⛈ 🌨

So what can you do? Make sure to say “Hi” first thing, just like you would in the office. Let folk know you’re there, and likewise say “bye” at the end of the day.
Note – I must do this more!

Get a Camera

Make sure you have a web camera. People are very expressive and as such our face can speak without speaking, the amount of non verbal communication you get over a camera is immense. Even for those that seriously dislike cameras, or if you feel your home office is a bit messy, ignore that and turn it on. Others will appreciate it.

“no more than 30 to 35 percent of the social meaning of a conversation or an interaction is carried by the words.”

Ray Birdwhistell The Kinesics Report

Casual chats

Work is never only about work, how many times would you walk past someones desk and say hello and have a wee chat about life? Or bump into someone in the kitchen and discuss what happened the other day while making a cup of tea.
Well, make sure you do this during your WFH days. Set up a time, at least twice a day to open up a video conference chat (Zoom is great) and do just that. Discuss what’s happening and listen to others.

Stick it in your calendar

As discussed above, in order to keep it up, you must put it into your calendar. Plan it out. These things will not just happen. We, inside our team set aside time for casual chats at least twice a day. May seem a little formal setting aside time, but if you don’t, then it won’t happen.
Conversations range from the weekend to what you may be working on and that’s a good thing.

Ultimately this is extremely rewarding as a team.

Don’t underestimate being a team, when things go wrong – and they will, when you’re stuck, when you’ve created a stinker of a bug, or broken the pipelines etc, being able to have a communication channel open will save your day and keep the team together.


Having your office in your house is hard. Are you ever away, do you ever switch off? Does the room where you work now turn into a no go zone after hours?
Now the following will depend entirely on your property – but do your utmost to create an office space. You NEED somewhere that you can shut off when you are done. Maybe if you don’t have space outside like myself for a shed/cabin, set up your desk in a room you don’t use. Maybe you stay with your parents or your flat mate is in the same situation as you. Swap rooms during the day.
Make your desk in that room, so once you are done, you don’t go back to that room.
Whatever you do, try really hard to find somewhere that you can close the door at the end of the day. So the livingroom will most certainly be the worst place! If you have it here, then you’ll not be able to have a relaxing time after a stressful day.

Hopefully that gives you a little bit of insight or ideas for your own WFH set up. Below is a small capture of the benefits and drawbacks that I’ve found when WFH.

What’s great

  • No travelling. This is great as I no longer have to pay Scotrail a small fortune each day.
  • I’m using my ‘extra’ time to do some daily exercise (… 😂, well almost).
  • Being at home for dinner with the family – kids really like this as well!
  • Having lunch/teas/biscuits brought out to my office 😎🍰
Time spent with family is a great benefit – much better than commuting!

What’s not so great

  • Missing my 50-60 mins travel each way where I can sit down and do my own thing on the train 🚅
  • Not being able to turn around and chat to colleagues.
  • Not being part of the bigger team/office.
  • Lack of community events.