Many Americans are being asked to work from home during the coronavirus pandemic, both for their safety and that of their coworkers, as well as to keep the businesses they work for running so they can continue to serve their customers. Working from the comfort of your own home is not as easy as it sounds. There could be countless distractions, possible feelings of isolation, and the temptation to spend every waking moment working. Here are some tips to help you focus on your work while at the same time interacting with coworkers and family to maintain balance in your life. - Make sure you have the equipment and supplies you need to do your job. Do you have a work device or will you be using your own? What about a telephone now that you'll no longer have an office line? Is there a place in your home to set up a functional temporary office to help block distractions? - Knowing what is expected of you will be important. Keep in touch with managers and coworkers so you know what you should be working on and what others are doing. Hopefully, your company has provided you with a list of phone numbers, email addresses or suggested a particular instant messaging application. Use them to stay in touch. - Follow security protocols as necessary. Will you be signing in via a VPN? Will you be emailing or storing sensitive files? Make sure you follow any required security measures, such as logging in and out of devices or locking or hiding paper files. - Make sure to contact any clients or customers that you regularly work with and let them know how to reach you and what hours you will be available. - Since your home is also now your workspace, make sure you figure out how to strike a balance between 'on' hours and 'off' hours. Work with family members to help avoid distractions but don't completely shut them off. Don't forget that your 'office' is also their home. - If you're not being paid via direct deposit into an account at your financial institution, ask management if that is possible. It's safer and more secure than driving to pick up a paper paycheck and going to your financial institution to make a deposit. If you are mailed a check, start making those deposits with remote deposit from your smartphone. It's as simple as logging into your financial institution with its free mobile app and taking photos of the front and back of your endorsed check. While it could take some time to get used to, you'll find that working from home can be just as productive as being in the office. Just remember that focus and communication will be big keys to success.