WFH: Pros & Cons from the Pros

Find out some lessons learned from working at home, and get an inside look at the Design Collaborative team’s remote workspaces.

The people of Design Collaborative (“DC”) are an incredibly resilient, cohesive, collaborative group dedicated to the mission of improving worlds and creating people-first places. Every day, we are discovering, connecting, and thriving in our new temporary environments, learning and growing with each other. We asked our DC employees to share with us some pros and cons of their remote work settings, and some lessons they’ve learned right off the bat!
Pros:
There are many positive elements about working from home, but two of the most popular ones seem to be the lack of commute and being with family. Of course, less of a commute means more family time (or more sleep time!). The DC team also shared that there is ample quiet focus time.
Cons:
What are some of the challenges of being away from the office? Stir-crazy kids, uncomfortable workspaces, excited pets…but the most-missed element of working in the office is, overwhelmingly, the people. Everyone misses their co-workers, and the conversations they have with them on a daily basis. The great thing about technology is that we still get to connect quite frequently via tools such as Microsoft Teams. Still, we will all be glad when we are able to go back and see each other in person again.
Lessons Learned:
Trying new things can be tricky, and sometimes we learn through making mistakes! Here are some lessons about working from home that the Design Collaborative team has learned:

Jeremiah Hatfield, Registered Architect

“DC culture is STRONG. Despite all of this, DC’s genuinely cohesive and entertaining culture prevails.”
“Step away and take frequent breaks.”

 

Jessica Rossow, Graduate Interior Designer

“Communication and patience are essential for working remotely.”

 

Kelsey Rowe, Electrical Engineer

“The light at the top of your screen means the camera is on!”

 

Rebecca Welch, Director of Human Resources

“It’s really helping me prioritize my tasks. Seems to work best when I can tackle one thing at a time in chunks.”

 

Pat Steffen, Registered Architect

“I need to get up and take breaks! Since there aren’t any coworkers here to interrupt me (except Chip), I tend to sit for far too long. I’m trying to be more conscious of getting up and walking around every hour.”

 

Gaby Moynahan, Electrical Engineer

“I never realized how much free coffee I used to drink!”

 

Phillip Oprie, Electrical Engineer

“Good communication becomes even more essential when you’re not sitting in the same room as your teammates.”

 

Kyle Wilson, Project Manager

“Sharing my video/phone conference calendar with my wife and kid.”

 

Mandy Samudio, Project Secretary

“Set up a good workspace first, and it will serve things well.”

 

Thad Burkes, Chief Estimator

“Two computer screens are better than one!”

 

Lori Duesler, Project Administrator

“Camera catches all.”

 

Tim Terman, Registered Architect

“Remote meetings aren’t that bad when done correctly and sometimes might be more efficient than in person.”

 

Bill Ledger, Director of Healthcare Design

“That an organization and culture that’s strong and stable can still survive outside of a specific workplace. The pastor of our church likes to remind the congregation that the church is not a ‘building.’ It is a group of like-minded people with a common purpose. That is what we have at DC and what makes our team so special!”

 

We are having to make changes and adjust, but the positive side of a challenge is that we can be creative and become part of the solution. We can take these lessons with us, learn from the cons, and focus on the pros as we move forward and improve our world – and yours.

Amber Eberly
Business Development & Marketing Coordinator