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13 Tips for maximizing remote work from home

Many companies, most notably Twitter, are recommending working at home for their staff, in the wake of the coronavirus. King County, home to Seattle in Washington State, where some 10 people have died, has made the same recommendation. 

New to telecommuting? We have some ideas of what you’ll need to re-create the office experience at home. 

1. Good internet connection

You’ll get nowhere if you can’t get online.

A tip: Work near the router to get the best signal, or splurge on a “mesh” system like Amazon’s Eero ($99 for 1, $249 for 3) or Google’s Nest Wi-Fi ($149 for 1, $269 for 2) which help evenly distribute the wifi signal and make it stronger in the home.

If you don’t want to spend and have poor internet, there’s always the last resort: hotspot. The wireless companies make it possible for you to connect your computer to your phone for Internet, by going into Settings, but only for a finite period of time. For instance, my T-Mobile plan offers 200 gigabytes of data and then slows you to a crawl once you’ve used it all. How much is 200 GB? Who knows. They don’t tell you. But in my experience, it all goes fast, within a day or two. 

2. Dedicated space 

Your home is likely to be quieter and less congested than what you have at work.

Still, a dedicated, private space, no matter how small, is a good start. “Put yourself in a place where you won’t get distracted by personal stuff (laundry, kids, making dinner, etc). It can become a slippery slope,” notes San Francisco based publicist Kat Eller Murray. That can be the kitchen table, the couch, somewhere that’s comfortable and comes with a place to sit in for an extended period.

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