“When keeping in touch with friends and family, do so in the same spirit of positivity and kindness.” The Psychology for architects Working from Home:

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  1. Be Active

Avoid waking up and “cracking” open your laptop. Try to grab some activating time before working. It’s unhealthy to jump straight into work from sleep.

  1. Hot Desk

The kitchen counter, coffee table, or desk are sure areas to refresh your workspace either daily or throughout the day. New spaces will help keep you inspired and mobile.

  1. Tiny Tasks

Focus on breaking tasks into their tiniest forms. This will keep you motivated and help you accurately estimate your workload. A to-do list will help estimate tasks in hours.

  1. 25m Bursts

With zero office distractions, you’ll notice a spike in productivity. Try working in 25-minute bursts, with 5-minute breaks. Check out the app called: Pomodoro technique for inspiration. Architects Share Best Practices for Working from Home

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An architect’s home work station. ©Architecture Plus Information
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An architect’s home work station. ©Diane Choih, Ann Beha Architects
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April 2, 2020, David Sokol ©A+I

Virtual collaboration has allowed other aspects of design practice to progress. A remote public meeting that can be attended by more than 150 people through Zoom is an advantage to be taken during the post-pandemic era.

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22m² Apartment in Taiwan / A Little Design. ©Hey! Cheese
  1. Maintain a routine: Even when working from home, a daily routine is important for maintaining your productivity, mental health, and happiness.
  2. Stay connected and be a calming influence: It is only natural for people to become worried or anxious during a time. The central goal of this article is to highlight how your time away from the office can be a major positive opportunity, allowing you to adopt new skills, habits, and knowledge. When keeping in touch with friends and family, do so in the same spirit of positivity and kindness.
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Morpholio Trace. Image ©Morpholio
  1. Move your projects to the cloud: Today, many design systems offer cloud-based services, such as Autodesk BIM 360 and Graphisoft BIMcloud. An alternative solution for maintaining a shared network among BIM models is by mirroring your workplace computer’s screen with your home computer through apps such as Splashtop.
  2. Move your files and folders to the cloud: Platforms such as Dropbox and Google Drive allow for free storing and securely sharing of information, which integrates easily with your computer’s file explorer/finder window panels.
  1. Hold virtual meetings regularly: Virtual meetings are conducted via Google Meet, which simply requires a Google account to use. For more extensive video conferences, we use Zoom to create a smooth interface between all members. Holding video meetings is essential for maintaining a sense of community among colleagues and avoiding misinterpretation, so use them to their maximum effect.
  2. Keep your tool range to a minimum: Funnel communication and file sharing through as few avenues as possible. In a physical office, you would likely only exchange information through talking, emailing, or folder exchange. Likewise, in a virtual environment, aim to limit communication channels to one text-based platform (such as Slack), one video platform, and one file-sharing platform. This will minimize confusion and miscommunication, and enhance productivity.
  3. Establish a dedicated work area: Take the time to set up a dedicated home office. To enhance productivity, consider acquiring a large screen such as a TV, or if budget allows, two monitors, to allow for a smoother workflow. If it appears you will be working from home for more than a few weeks, also consider investing in a good keyboard and multi-function mouse. Be conscious also of ergonomics, finding a comfortable chair with back support.
  4. Re-evaluate your working hours: working from home means no long commutes and no strict one-hour lunch break. Examining your workflow, you may find it possible to accomplish your tasks in 5 hours rather than the traditional 8 hours mandated by office hours. Use this “new time” as an opportunity to learn new software, study a topic that will benefit your performance, or explore some of the other resources in this article.
  5. Mitigate against distractions: Consider using the Pomodoro Technique by breaking your schedule into 25-minute intense work blocks, divided by 5-minute breaks. If you find yourself frequently distracted by phones and the internet, then place your phone in flight mode/sleep mode, and place it out of your eye line.
  6. Switch off: Discipline is important when working from home. While it is vital to maintain productivity levels during your core work hours, it is equally important to detach from work when needed.

Bibliographic References

https://www.archdaily.com/936082/tips-for-architects-working-at-home-during-covid-19

https://www.architecturalrecord.com/articles/14546-architects-share-best-practices-for-working-from- home

Author

Sam Adediran has been an Architect in architectural consulting services. He has an extensive experience in design, planning, project supervision, implementation & management, and has worked on housing, public and institutional buildings. He has designed, supervised and managed building procurements for various projects. He has been a registered Architect since 2010

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