Working from home can be really lonely by its very nature. There’s no escaping the fact that you are physically isolated from other people when your office is in your home or your local coffee shop. However, to stay connected to your colleagues and your profession and industry, you should make an effort to communicate more than you normally might in a regular office setting. Here’s some insight about how to keep yourself connected so that you are not so alone while you are on the clock.
Conduct video calls, instant message chats, phone calls and other real-time communication with your colleagues and supervisors. This can help you and your co-workers stay on the same page with the projects you’re all working on. Virtual face time via video chat can help you stay connected and feel like you are speaking with a person face-to-face.
Stay online via chat, or have people send you text messages for quick communication. If you don’t need to give an answer to a question right away, use email. Email, chat, and texts, however, do not allow you to transmit messages via body language and tone of voice, which are essential components of communication. Pick the mode of communication carefully for each instance.
Keep your messages brief and to the point. Don’t ignore a chat for 10 minutes. You can’t just walk over to your colleague to share ideas when you work from home, so be clear, concise, and timely in your communications.
You might also follow your colleagues on social media so that you can feel that you work with actual people and not just bodiless entities that send messages via email a few times a week.
If you ever feel that a colleague is upset with you or you’re not sure of the tone or intent of a message, get on a video chat with the person as soon as possible to clear up any miscommunication. Not understanding the other person in a virtual conversation, especially those that are written, can be frustrating and can lead to bigger problems with the professional and personal relationship.