While the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic impacts all of us greatly, and for many working remotely is a great challenge, my co-workers at McGrath were well prepared.
We had already trialled our teams working from home to ensure our tools and systems were in place, so we were fortunate to be ahead of the curve in that respect.
Real estate is a mobile industry so in many ways it was easier for us as we benefitted from a significant investment in technology and infrastructure in the preceding 12 months.
Having said that, for me as CEO, it is important not to feel isolated or disconnected from my leadership team. To that end, we have regular communication and contact by phone, email and Zoom meetings. Previously our executive team previously met weekly, now it is twice daily – at the beginning of the day, and near the end of the day – as we closely monitor all developments. And I’m pleased to say that is operating very cohesively.
I’ve always had a disciplined structure – and this is now more important than ever. A defined routine is imperative to working effectively from home – that includes getting dressed as though you are in work mode. I believe it’s important to apply discipline in how you present yourself, particularly as you work from home. It’s all too easy to get lazy; and I believe that impacts your work efficiency.
For me, routine is critical. I always start the day with some form of exercise. Whether it is cycling, kayaking or running, I try to do each twice weekly. It’s an early 4:50am rise daily, to ensure that I’m not distracted from work commitments.
I’ve had to modify how I exercise to respect the social distancing that our government requires. I’m very lucky to have three active daughters, so I’m enjoying running and cycling with my youngest at the moment. My kayaking is now limited to pairs, so I’ve been able to continue with three passions of mine. Training and exercise for me helps with energy levels and an alertness necessary to stay focused and calm particularly in these challenging times.
Mine is a busy household with my daughters working remotely and my wife running her own childcare business. But I’m very fortunate to have a couple of designated places to work of my own.
I venture outside for a couple of 20-minute breaks during the day, and I’m lucky to have a few outdoor areas to take in some fresh air. I look forward our family dinner each night as we share our challenges and observations. We’re coping well with the changing environment and I’m fortunate to be at home with my girls, spirited as they are!
I’m pleased to say I’ve become quiet adept at operating our coffee machine and have to admit I do take some pleasure from saving $4 from each coffee I make!