Does Your Dog Know You’re Going To Work?

If only we all had the EQ of our pets – dogs are very perceptive.  They know our subconscious habits and our daily movements – often even better than we do.  When I lace up my running shoes in the morning, my Shepherd Plato knows it’s time for a walk.  He grabs the lead with his mouth and excitedly tugs me out the door.  He also joins us in the office almost every day and sulks when left at home (no remote working for him!).

Economics professor at Stanford University and co-founder of WFH Research Nicholas Blook was asked – five years from now, what percentage of the US population will work remotely?  His response: “Currently, 10 percent of the US workforce are fully remote and 35 percent are hybrid remote. In five years, I think both numbers will be pretty similar. Pushing this up is continued technological improvements in working-from-home technology. Pushing this down is the pandemic ebbing from memory.”

Covid accelerated a lot of things – principally the technology and the cultural acceptance that working from home (at least part of the time) is a real option.  But this new “freedom” needs discipline and boundaries – or with it comes some habits that may confuse your pets, kids, clients and in time, you…

“It turns out there’s a dangerous line between arguing for remote work and arguing yourself out of a job. And since remote work makes employees less visible, they will have to find other ways to let higher-ups know they exist, or risk being passed over for pay raises.” Rani Molla, The Future of Remote Work According to 6 Experts, Vox.

If you think working from home is good for your career development, you might want to rethink that one too…

If your job can be done remotely, why wouldn’t funders, employers and product providers outsource your work to a cheaper service provider offshore?  This has already been happening for the past decade in the behind-the-scenes operational roles, and now other parts of the value chain may accelerate offshoring in the face of a slowing economy and rising inflation

The reality is, there’s nuance to what you do, and you add maximum value when you’re in work mode, whether in the office interacting face-to-face with colleagues and clients, or in front of a virtual background, masking the mess in your lounge.

 3 tips to maximise productivity, segregate work and leisure and make your pet proud:

1.Dress to impress: Sitting in your pyjamas all day isn’t good for your work output or your self-esteem. Think of a policeman or policewomen in their perfectly pressed uniform, steel capped boots and utility belt.  They command respect.  Look like you mean business and you’ll be amazed at the level of business you can do.

2. Maximise social interaction: Some of the best discussions at work happen in the hallway or at the watercooler. These 5-minute informal conversations with trusted colleagues often reveal more about the inner workings of your business or industry than a 2 hour Zoom or Teams meeting.  If you want to build valuable relationships with colleagues and clients, you need to get face-to-face with them.  Listen with intent and look for the subtle body language cues easily missed over email or video call.

3. Get your work-life balance back: When you work from home the lines between work-life and personal-life blur.  This means it’s harder to focus when you’re working, it’s harder to be present in your personal life and with work seemingly never ending it’s easier to burnout.  By separating work-life from personal-life, you’ll be more focused at work and your performance will sky-rocket. At the same time, you’ll be more present in your home-life and your family and friends will thank you for it.

So, here’s the opportunity for you:

You can get an edge on everyone in your industry simply by returning to some of your pre-pandemic habits. If you got your dog in the last couple of years (AKA you have a ‘Covid dog’), it’s likely your dog is confused as to why every day isn’t a weekend. So start donning those funny formal clothes more often; get out to meet people – you can even take the dog with you to the coffee shop; and make time for your pet and your family where your mobile is on silent and not clamped to your ear, whilst you try vainly to throw the ball…

Get dressed up, get focused and let your dog know it’s time for work!

Jeff Zulman is the Founder and Managing Director of Trailblazer Finance, a specialist lender offering loans, valuations and trail book buy/sell advice to professionals including Mortgage Brokers, Financial Planners, Accountants and Real Estate Agents.

Whether you’re a mortgage broker, financial planner, rent roll business owner, accountant or other cashflow business, we can understand and support your specific business goals and needs.

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