During the first 11 days of March, Cisco customers spent 5.5 billion minutes in virtual meetings. That’s roughly 10,464 years, for inquiring minds. By the end of the month, Cisco Webex had registered a record-breaking 324 million attendees. While many of us are already self-proclaimed experts when it comes to working from home, for some, this is unchartered territory they are navigating for the first time.
In an effort to bring some clarity – but mostly a bit of fun— to those of you who find yourselves in a new remote work environment, we asked our global Cisco Gateway community with customer advocates from around the world to share their tips and tricks for working from home.
Top 10 ‘Work from Home’ Tips
Here’s a round-up of the top responses from our Gateway gurus:
1. Early bird gets the worm.
“Start your virtual meetings early, and practice sharing the documents and applications that you intend to share. That way, you can troubleshoot any problems before attendees join the meeting.” – Andrei Sidorkov, EMEA Telecommunications Manager, International Paper Company
2. Put on your thinking cap.
“Have some fun hats or props handy to keep things light. My coworker and I will often put on our ‘thinking caps’ (our Cisco Live hats) when brainstorming.” – Shawn Dietrich, Voice Engineer, USI Insurance Services
3. Find your balance.
“The coffee machine is a bit further away from my desk at home than it was at the office. But that is some sort of work out for balance.” – Benjamin Bubbers, System Administrator, Schleswig-Holstein Netz AG
4. Locate the ‘mute’ button.
“I can’t imagine working from home without Cisco Jabber. It has all the options I need in my work. The ‘mute’ option is very useful when you have two barking dogs. ;)” – Kornelia Rutowska, IT, Enea Centrum
5. Know your audio!
“Is my WiFi at home saturated because of kids being home from school? Is my VPN tanking my speeds? Do a speed test and make sure you have some bandwidth before using audio over your computer and if not, Cisco Webex has a great call back feature! Don’t hesitate to use that as a way to save frustration on meetings!” – Joshua Baever, Sr. Systems Reliability Engineer, T-Mobile
6. Fail to prepare, prepare to fail.
“Make your battle station ready for a new day of challenges. If it’s clean and tidy you can focus on work. If schools are closed, do not forget about some entertainment for kids… and pets.” – Dariusz Gora, Network Analyst, International Paper Polska
7. Make sure you’re fully dressed for success.
“Wear pants. You’re working, just from a different location. Act like it.” – Nikola Perunicic, Systems Engineer, APIS IT
8. Stay connected.
“Our team has always used Cisco Webex Teams rather than email as it makes it simple to keep conversations together and there is no need to say ‘I sent you that email last week.’ You can just re-quote your post.” – Mark White, Collaboration Guru, CDN Consulting
“If you just want to organize meetings, Cisco Webex Meetings would be the way to go, it’s simple and straight forward. If you are looking for a full-fledged Collaboration Platform, Cisco’s Webex Teams is your tool.” – David Egger, Enterprise IT Infrastructure Architect, Miba AG
9. Welcome impromptu visits from furry friends.
“I’ve been working from home for the last 3 years when not at a customer site and I sometimes have a companion at my desk. This even helps me with studying for certifications (a friendly reminder that I have a book to read).” – Joacim Wicander, Senior Data Center Engineer, Conscia Sweden
10. Embrace your “Family IT Support” role.
“I use Cisco Webex quite a bit to connect with family and perform the ever present ‘Family IT Support’ job function. I’m not sure if it’s a gift or a curse, but either way I get to connect with family so it’s a win in my book.” – Ryan Deppe, Network Operations Supervisor, Cianbro Corporation
“I think the pets are happy to have us around.” – Jason Lachowsky, Industrial Engineer, Cybertol