According to a Pew Research Center survey, 71 percent of the workforce in the U.S. is working from home all or most of the time. And more than half say, if given a choice, they would want to keep working from home after the pandemic. With this drastic shift, how can employees make a positive impact in a virtual work environment?
Adopt a Growth Mindset. People with a growth mindset thrive on challenges and see failure, not as a reflection of intelligence but rather as a way to grow and test existing abilities. According to Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck, who has spent her career looking at how attitude affects performance, life is all about how you deal with life’s challenges.
Empower Others. Support your colleagues and offer “out-of-the-box” solutions to the unique problems that they may be facing. This is the time for us to all be proactive in order to inspire others.
Provide Updates. Provide colleagues with regular status reports on projects, both large and small, and invite them to share their opinions and offer solutions. This is where technology can be particularly powerful; make full use of your project management system to keep in touch with colleagues.
Take Initiative. Take the opportunity to accomplish tasks without being asked and, if possible, do more than what is expected of you. By taking the initiative, others will follow your lead, which ultimately leads to a more productive workplace.
Continue to Network. While it may be difficult to network face-to-face, it is still possible to connect with mentors and colleagues virtually. Connect with others inside and outside of your workplace; you never who may be able to assist you in the future.
Commit to Professional Development. Don’t overlook the importance of your professional development at this time. The workplace has never been as fluid and as susceptible to change as it is today. By taking charge of your career through personal and professional development, you can establish a unique roadmap that will give you oversight and a capacity to plan.
Connect with Others. Connecting with colleagues can also help to lessen the feeling of isolation and detachment. Simply ask your colleagues how they are doing or a personal question, such as if they have read any good books lately. Talking about things outside of work can help people to feel connected on a more emotional level.
Promote a Positive Corporate Culture. Every employee has the opportunity and responsibility to shape the culture in which they work. Take small steps daily; enable your camera for video calls, continue to dress professionally, maintain your enthusiasm, and help your coworkers.
Seek Coaching. In today’s turbulent world, a business coach can help you navigate a complex professional landscape, make the right calls, avoid pitfalls and, perhaps most importantly, meet the right people. Many organizations have a coach/mentor program, but you can also look outside your company, or even the industry, if you believe a particular individual is the best match.