A woman teleworking at home. Illustrative photo.
A woman teleworking at home. Illustrative photo. (LOIC VENANCE / hooly News)

With the first confinement, many French people learned to telework. However, there is always room for improvement. Also, we remind you of some basic rules to make the most of technological tools.

To telework well, you need a good connection, fiber or ADSL. If this is not the case, try to fall back on 4G, for example, with a 4G / Wi-Fi access point, which operators offer today. Do not forget that, within a household, the speed is shared and therefore if your connection is weak, it is better to avoid having two people making video at the same time.

So that the videoconferencing sessions go as well as possible.
– Do not put your back to a window so as not to be against the light and appear completely black.
– Use an external microphone if possible, because in video, paradoxically the sound even more important than the image quality and being heard well has almost become a matter of politeness.

– It is essential to use an antivirus.
– If you connect to your company’s computer system, you will in principle have been provided with a VPN (virtual private network) and fairly strict security instructions.
– Be extra vigilant about the security of your passwords.
– Be careful with phishing attacks, that is, e-mails that attempt to lure you to fake websites to steal your credentials.
– Do not share your videoconference credentials with just anyone and do not post them on social networks, as was done in the spring, which caused unpleasant surprises, such as the intrusion of unwanted people into conversations.
– Finally, verify that end-to-end encryption is enabled on your video software, such as Zoom. This is what guarantees the confidentiality of the exchanges.

Be methodical. When working from home, it is essential to organize your computer well, especially if you use personal equipment. Consider creating separate folders for work and personal documents.

The choice of the mode of communication is also very important:

– E-mail is perfect for discussing complex subjects, for which you do not expect an immediate response.
– Instant messaging, such as SMS or WhatsApp, is useful for quickly solving simple problems.
– Finally, audio or video (the “call “, as they say), are essential for debating together and dealing with problems that cannot be easily solved by e-mail.

Stay courteous. Successful teleworking also requires good communication. However, written exchanges carry a significant emotional charge. It is therefore important to control your exchanges, in particular by remaining very factual, courteous and empathetic. Make no mistake about the formula or the emojis. The slightest misstep can quickly cause misunderstandings and tensions.

The advantage of telecommuting is that you are not disturbed every five minutes by colleagues. But spending eight or more hours a day alone at your computer can be stressful.

Sometimes it’s hard to concentrate. A word of advice: turn off the notifications from time to time, so as not to be permanently disturbed by a message that arrives. On both PC and Mac, all you have to do is activate the “Do not disturb” (in the Apple environment, this mutes notifications everywhere at the same time, on computer, iPhone, iPad and smartwatch). Consider turning them back on after a while.

Another practice that some teams have adopted on collaborative work tools, such as Slack or Teams: create a recreation channel, to have non-professional discussions, make jokes, etc. It’s the equivalent of hallway chats, in virtual mode.

Finally, remember to lift your nose from your computer regularly, take a walk around the house, do a little gym, get some fresh air, and look into the distance for a few minutes to rest your eyesight. Take the opportunity to chat with someone, even from a distance. You can also try meditation, for example, with an application like Small Bamboo. A few minutes of meditation each day, allow you to recharge your batteries and see life in pink. He is one of the best allies in digital life.