There’s no denying it. Work environments have changed dramatically, even if you’ve been working remotely for a long time.
Working from home (#WFH) is a drastic change from working in a centralized office or even a remote shared office space. There are many new obstacles that may prevent you from being productive and communicating effectively, while other issues are easily overlooked or minimized, to your detriment.
One key to success is understanding your own strengths and what you need in your physical environment in order to do your best work.
Ergonomics is one thing, but using your Kolbe A™ Index result to determine what you need to be most productive will help you set up an optimum workspace and vastly improve your performance.
Use the information below to make working remotely better for you. If you are in a leadership position, use the tips to provide the resources necessary for others to thrive when working virtually.
If you Initiate in Fact Finder (7-10), you’re the type of person who needs to research and be specific. If you CounterAct in Fact Finder (1-3), you’re the type of person who needs to generalize and remove complexity.
Initiating Fact Finders may need an appropriate workspace that is more traditional and formal. You also need to have access to any records and data regarding your work, whether that is electronically or in paper form, so a designated place for these materials (filing cabinet, bookcase, etc.) is imperative.
CounterAct Fact Finders may need a simple, less formal or traditionally appropriate workspace. Having access to information electronically is always important, but you don’t need detailed records at your fingertips.
If you Initiate in Follow Thru (7-10), you’re the type of person who needs structure and to be systematic. If you CounterAct in Follow Thru (1-3), you’re the type of person who needs to be flexible and keep things open-ended.
Initiating Follow Thrus need a workspace with room for organization of all their stuff and the accessories to help (file caddies, drawer organizers, etc.). You also need a space that allows you uninterrupted time – it’s best if you’re able to have a dedicated space with a door you can close when others are around.
CounterAct Follow Thrus need a workspace that has room for all of their piles – this can be on the floor, a countertop or using a rack or cabinet that you can close to hide it all. It may look random to others, but it’s how you roll. A ready supply of sticky notes to remind you of important tasks is also very helpful.
If you Initiate in Quick Start (7-10), you’re the type of person who naturally changes things up and needs to innovate. If you CounterAct in Quick Start (1-3), you’re the type of person who needs stability and to minimize the unexpected.
Initiating Quick Starts need a workspace that can be changed easily. You need space to brainstorm (whiteboard, online app, etc.) and the ability to experiment with different configurations and be spontaneous.
CounterAct Quick Starts need to create a stable workspace and have plenty of notice if a procedural change is going to take place, even seemingly little things like new furnishings or brand of materials. You’re well-served to set up your remote work space to be similar to what you’re accustomed to in the office.
If you Initiate in Implementor (7-10), you’re the type of person who is naturally hands-on and demonstrates concrete solutions. If you CounterAct in Implementor (1-3), you’re the type of person who naturally deals in the abstract and conceptualizes without building a model.
Initiating Implementors need to work in a space with a window that has room for you to move around. You need high-quality furniture, equipment and tools (especially a webcam), anything less is distracting to you. Stand-up desks and items to fiddle with also help you focus (fidget spinners, stress balls, etc.).
CounterAct Implementors need a workspace that enables you to imagine conceptual solutions. Temporary, or pop-up office space, serves you well as long as you don’t have to build anything.
Facilitator | You have 3 or 4 Strengths in the 4-6 Range (none in the 7-10 range)
If you don’t Initiate in any of the Kolbe Action Modes®, you’re called a Facilitator and will often be the unsung hero of the group. You won’t Initiate Action, but you’ll catch what others may miss.
Facilitators need a workspace that enables and invites collaboration. Your webcam and the ability to virtually interact with coworkers is essential to your success.
The bottom line is… your instinctual needs don’t change because of where you happen to be working. Your workspace can complement those needs and enable you to thrive, or it can be distracting and slow you down. Even if you can’t create the perfect home office, you can make adjustments to help you find the freedom to be yourself.
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