Today, more than ever before, companies across the world are utilizing remote work force capabilities. More and more companies are following this trend as the option for employees to work from their homes has a plethora of notable advantages: no commute time, comfortable attire, flexible schedule, more time with loved ones. However, with the capability for individuals to fulfill their work responsibilities from the comfort of their homes, there is an added challenge. Home and other responsibilities—family obligations, pets, chores—can present themselves as potential obstacles to work productivity.
As the owner of a 10-month-old Mini Goldendoodle puppy, there are notable pros and cons for being able to utilize a work-from-home setup. The main one being time. I am able to spend more time with my puppy: going on walks, training, bonding and playing. When puppies are under a year old, however, they are similar to children. They need constant supervision and guidance. On the flip side, this could present potential hurdles to normal productivity during a normal work-from-home day. Here are a few tips on how a pet owner can maintain their productivity while also playing the role of caretaker for their fur baby.
One helpful tip would be to have distractions. Puppies have a lot of energy and prioritizing a way for them to release some of that pent-up energy will save a future headache. A bored dog is a mischievous dog. The key to preventing mischief is to distract your pup with things that they can chew. I have several ropes, bones and toys that keep my puppy occupied. I even fill them with treats like peanut butter if he’s refusing to settle down. It takes him a while to dig it all out while I can get some work done.
Another helpful tip is to have a designated ‘play time.’ Time management is a well-known hurdle in the work-from-home workday, but it is a necessary skill to have, especially when owning a puppy. In order to keep my dog from eating into my work day productivity, I set specific break times for him and I. Setting specific time periods where you can bond and play doesn’t only ensure that you are able to have a productive work day. It also reinforces obedience.
Something else that has helped has been creating a separate ‘work’ space. This notion helps with work-life balance where you feel you aren’t living at work. Additionally, this has prevented unwanted barking or growling to interfere with work calls and meetings.
Dogs can also improve productivity as well. When I work from home, sometimes I forget to eat or just to take a break. And my break is also with my laptop more often than not. As a result, having a short walk, or play time during the day is refreshing and afterward, I feel refocused and productive.
The last and most important tip is to learn to be flexible. Dogs love routines and predictability. However, when you work from home, it’s challenging to establish such a schedule for your pet. Sometimes I have set conference calls, team meetings or other work-related tasks that prevent me from leaving my work area. As a result, I have learned to take my dog for walks whenever I am able to and plan ahead when I know I have commitments that prevent me from performing our normal daily routine.
Remember, not every puppy is the same and not every work-from-home day is either. As a result, it is best to approach this territory with an open mindset. Every tip might not work for you and your puppy. But I encourage you to give these a try and maybe a couple will be the perfect solution to any snags in your productivity!
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