Avoid Looking Like an Idiot When Working From Home
Working from home can be challenging.
Here are 9 tips that will help you avoid looking like an idiot while working from home.
1. Make sure your work devices are physically secure.
Obviously, you wouldn’t think of leaving your company equipment in your car overnight but what about protecting it from being damaged by dropping it off your desk or spilling coffee on it. Look now to make sure your devices are physically secure, and your work area is free from spills and accidents that will ruin your day.
2. When you leave your computer or work phone for any amount of time, lock your screen!
Have you heard about the cat that sent a message to the boss of the cat owner? Kids and cats can get you in trouble and possibly even cause your boss to question how responsible you are with the company’s data and devices.
3. Think twice about every e-mail request and how you may respond.
Only a fool would fall for the one from the Syrian prince that asks for help with a simple wire transfer. But what about a request from your boss for Apple gift cards or an emergency wire transfer request from the CEO, especially when it appears to come from their e-mail with their own e-mail signature. If it involves money, then call them about it – and use the phone number you have in your own address book and not the one in their e-mail signature. 😉
4. When joining online meetings be mindful of your surroundings.
Check what’s in your background, everyone else in the meeting is. Let everyone at home know it is meeting time and they need to steer clear and be quiet. Shut the door and even put up a sign is certainly not a bad idea.
5. Make sure your computer and work phone are password protected.
Use a very strong password. Avoid being the coworker whose personal e-mail gets hacked and then their bank accounts, work accounts, and so on. It is your responsibility to use cryptic passwords for all banks, email, and work accounts. Ask your IT department for help with how to best use good passwords.
6. No IT department, no problem.
Use a password manager like LastPass to keep track of your passwords. This type of trusted software will help you maintain complex passwords for all the online services you use. Most password managers cost less than a dollar a month and can save you thousands if ever someone was able to get access to one of your accounts
7. If you are working from your personal computer, make a separate profile just for work.
Do not use your personal profile on your computer for work. This protects you and your company’s data. And certainly, never let anyone in your family use the same profile as the one you use for work. Remember the cat?
8. Do not use work devices for personal activities.
Even the most basic security solutions that companies use to monitor activities on company computers and mobile devices. Unless you want your boss to know every detail of your personal computing life, do you?
9. Apply updates and patches to all your devices.
Most patches are for security-related issues. Many of them very seriously. Ask your IT department for guidance on taking care of this on both your work and home computers and devices. But, don’t apply patches or upgrade the software to company devices without permission from your employer.