The present Pandemic has forced majority of the people to work from home. Though a few of professionals were earlier working from Home, this forced working from home has been a new concept to a lot of men. Earlier I had written about tips from Moms to work from home. In this interview with Mr. Sandeep Radhakrishnan, I would like to highlight the difficulties and solutions on working from Home for Men.
So why a seperate post for Men and Women ? Because the society expectations from both genders is different and we are brought up in a particular way with that mindset. Being a gender neutral website, it is important that we talk about the difficulties of both genders.
Mr. Sandeep Radhakrishnan, is a Human Resource Professional with about 15 years of experience and heading HR department for a diversified organisation.
What is your Work from Home Schedule ?
There is no much change in my Schedule. I am working the same way, as I working, when I was going to office. Wake up at the same time, freshen up, have breakfast, just that now I do not have to commute and beat the Mumbai Traffic. So I utilise that time to watch some news or TV or just to surf the internet. Calls start from around 9 am and then till I call it a day, it continues. In a Business Partnering role, you need to be in touch over phone with the leaders and employees to keep them engaged, know about their well being in this difficult time and also a personal touch about family and relatives doing well.In parallel, chalk out the future plans for business when we get back from this phase.
What is the difference between working from home and working from office ?
Well one of the major difference is no travel time so I can save upto 3 to 4 hours travelling. That makes a huge difference in my day time. In cities like Mumbai we spend more of our time and energy on the road. Yes, there is a difference, when you work from your office, there is a personal setup, you are in that mind set to work, even when you work from home you are in that mindset, but it is more relaxed. Though it is good to have working from home once in a while but it is not always that would be possible. Because at a certain time, work does come to a standstill because there are certain limitations.
What are the difficulties you face, when working from home?
As I said earlier, Working from home is more like working on a relaxed mode. Sometimes the children do distract. Earlier work calls were made in complete silence and now the work calls that I make and receive always have background sounds i.e. children’s voices. It becomes difficult to track other person mindset if he/she is also is in work from home mode when there is a call as it depends on his surroundings and work which is prevailing at that point of time.
Sometimes, it is frustrating because as the companies are not fully functional, it is very limited scope of work that we can perform. We had to process the full salaries of the locations. Thanks to our management for supporting all staff in this difficult time. It was the collective team effort of my HR members – Mr.Krishna, Mr.Shrikant, Mr.Vishal, Ms.Sayli, Mr.Vishwadeep, Mr.Viraj, Mr. Prasad, Ms.Pooja, Mr.Joseph, Mr.Justino and Ms.Sonam that we could release the salary on time in coordination with the accounts team and the business heads. The talent management team- Mr.Kapil and Mr.Chandan continues with the hiring of key roles by speaking to candidates and keeping the list ready for assessment when we are up and live. There were challenges related to movement of these people from home to workplace which was required for the computing and release of compensation/hiring, but it was managed without any gaps and coordinated well over phone. Hope this lockdown ends soon.
Would you prefer working from home or working from office?
Definately working from Office but I would not mind working from home occassionally.
Any new household chores, your wife made you do?
Yes, definately, I am now the extended muscle power. I do accompany her to the Vegetable Market solely for the purpose of lifting the bags.
Any new art work or hobby that you learnt ?
Yes, I have been spending some time playing Ludo on Facebook.It has been a good stress buster.
Has working from home brought any change in your health ?
With travel time reduced. I get three more additional hours. I am able to control my diet. No junk food since many days and a more relaxed sleep has helped me have a better body. More concentration on personal hygiene of self and others in family – washiing hands more regularly, using santizers when off to shops for purchases of essentials, using masks to avoid polluted air/ virus inhale making me cautious to stay fit.
What is the one tip that has helped you in managing the Work and Personal Life balance ?
One tip I would say is playing with my children. One good thing that happened during this lockdown period was my daughter started walking and I could bond better with my children. They could also understand my work. So I think bonding with your family and making them understand about your work helps you in getting better support.
What do you plan to do on the day everything resumes normally ?
I have really no clue. Just resume back to busy running life. Be a part of that crazy traffic jam and probably be hooked on to google maps to find out the least crowded road.
Thank you so much for your valueable time.
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