Table of contents:
- 1. Set up an ergonomic workplace
- 2. Clearly separate private life from working life
- 3. Talk, talk, talk
- 4. IT equipment and data protection
- 5. Sufficient exercise, even in the home office
2023 Author: Hannah Pearcy | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-24 11:12
Almost every second (49 percent) now works in the home office - this is new for 18 percent of all employees, according to a recent survey by the digital association Bitkom (as of March 11 to 15, 2020). 41 percent of the respondents, in turn, stated that their work generally does not permit a home office. For many, permanent work in the home office is an enormous change. We give tips on how to do it.
1. Set up an ergonomic workplace
The same also applies in the home office: The workplace must be ergonomically designed to avoid back pain and other complaints. Of course, very few have an ergonomic sit-stand desk at home (our current market overview of sit-stand tables), but these simple tips already help to make the workplace more ergonomic:
- 1. The monitor should be placed at least an arm's length away. Because if the screen is too close, the posture is often cramped. This leads to tension in the shoulder and neck area. The further away the monitor is, the more relaxed the upper body and eyes are.
- 2. The height of the monitor should be set so that the view falls diagonally downwards - the head is tilted slightly downwards. This relieves the strain on the neck, the eyes are less strained.
- 3. The keyboard and mouse should be positioned so that the elbows are always at the same height. This means that the upper body is not permanently stressed on one side, which prevents cramps and disharmonies in the shoulder, back and neck muscles.
- 4. Palm rests prevent the hands from kinking when using the mouse. Then joints, tendons and nerves are protected from the hand to the elbow and diseases such as carpal tunnel syndrome or golfers arm are prevented.
- 5. Adjust the office chair and table correctly to your own height. This online calculator shows how this works.
- 6. The pelvis should be tilted slightly - ergonomic chairs and seat cushions help. So the lower back remains in its natural posture; Spinal discs and muscles are relieved.
- 7. The feet should be placed firmly and as parallel as possible on the floor. The body automatically adopts a healthier posture, and in contrast to the seat with the leg folded over, the load is distributed evenly over both halves of the body.
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2. Clearly separate private life from working life
In the home office, the distraction can be great: be it through the household, the children or pets. It is important to set clear limits for yourself and the family and to set fixed working hours. It also helps, if possible, to set up a retreat where you can close the door and be on your own. Even if this becomes difficult in many rental apartments - at least you should avoid working in the bedroom - it can have a negative impact on sleep.
Due to the constant distraction in the home office, it can also be difficult to get through the day productively. Here it helps to set clear and realistic goals and to distinguish important from less important tasks.
It also motivates you to set yourself a fixed daily routine and to dress like in the office. Because the jogging pants invite you to stroll on the couch, but not for concentrated work on the PC. To make the start of the day easier, you can walk around the block with a home-brewed coffee, for example. This sets a clear starting point. A final ritual is also important to switch off from work at the end of the day.
3. Talk, talk, talk
Communication with colleagues is essential. We are all in the same boat at the moment and should show solidarity with one another. Many applications such as Microsoft Teams allow quick communication with colleagues, also via video. A short good morning greeting to everyone, as would also be the case in the office, strengthens the feeling of community not working alone. Bosses can also invite you to a Friday afternoon happy hour, where you can meet again via video conference and exchange ideas.
Fortunately, meetings can be implemented virtually virtually these days. That everyone is up to date with the latest technology is an important prerequisite for not hanging out on anyone. Older colleagues in particular often find it difficult to communicate digitally - simple and understanding help is important here. Otherwise, the rules for online meetings are similar to those for offline: Structured, goal-oriented and not too long. To avoid everyone messing up, a spokesman should lead the meeting and all participants should mute their microphones until they have a question. An additional chat can also help to collect questions.
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4. IT equipment and data protection
Regarding data protection, similar strict rules apply as in the office - a workplace remains a workplace. The exchange of sensitive data should take place via a virtual, private network (VPN), which should be provided by the IT department. On the one hand, this ensures secure data exchange, and on the other hand, employees can access the intranet, for example, which is normally only available in the company network.
If the employer permits work from home, he must also take care to provide the employees with the necessary technical equipment or to allow them access with private equipment.
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5. Sufficient exercise, even in the home office
Those who work in their home office often have the problem of hardly moving. On some days you just walk back and forth between bed, desk and kitchen. A lack of exercise is not only unhealthy, but also depresses your mood - that's why you should also make sure you exercise enough in your home office.
As in the office, the same applies in the home office: moving in between helps. Small exercises can loosen up everyday work. It is even an advantage that you can better incorporate a small workout at home - be it in the morning or for lunch. Apps or online programs can help you find exercises. And last but not least, it also helps to go for a walk at lunchtime.
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