It’s kind of crazy how just a month ago I was writing these blog posts for a relatively small group of home business owners. Today, while we’re dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, the numbers of people working from home has exploded. If I have ever doubted how quickly the world around me can change, this situation is proof that everything can change in a moment. Working from home is the norm right now, but if you’re like I was at the beginning, you may be finding keeping it real when working from home isn’t always easy.
When I say keeping it real, it isn’t so much about remaining true to yourself and who you are.
It’s about how others perceive you. Social isolation has always been part of doing business from home. It’s why many of us occasionally choose to work from a coffee shop or co-working environment. What we may not always talk about is the difference in the way those who work from home can be perceived by clients, customers, team members and co-workers. When the bulk of your communication is done via email or text it can be easy for those we do business with to lose sight of the fact that we are real people. We become just another ‘virtual’ entity. And that can make it hard to create real connections with others.
So what can we do to keep it real? Especially now, with the need for social distancing and staying home?
This is when those of us working from home often must step outside of our comfort zone. If you’re an introvert like me, I much prefer email communication to live messaging, video calls and even the phone. Over the years I’ve come to realize that it’s actually better for me and my business to deal with a bit of discomfort and make sure I connect in ways other than just email. When I started pushing myself to do phone and video calls, my business improved and I started getting more referrals.
Why does it matter?
It’s hard to convey personality when communicating via text only. It’s personality that sets you apart in other people’s minds as being a real, flesh and blood person. Things like the tone of your voice or the sharing of small bits of your personal life over the phone or seeing your smile or your pet in the background of a video conference reinforces that you’re a living, breathing human being. That opens the door to truly connecting with others. We all know that those connections are critical in building long term relationships in life and in business.
Keeping it real when working from home is as easy as choosing a video call over an email or picking up the phone instead of texting. Let others that you interact with see and hear you. Let them get a sense of who you are and what your personality is. Give them ways to make real connections, even this time of digital necessity.
Are you having a hard time transitioning to working from home? Are you totally lost when it comes to what tools to use for communication and productivity? Wish there was someone with working from home experience you could talk to? Now you do. During this time of social distancing/social isolation, I would like to host a weekly Facebook Live Q & A Session to answer your burning questions about working from home. Click below to follow my Facebook Page and be sure to vote in the poll on what day/time you want me to go Live!