How Silentium Vietnam prepare for social distancing
It is quite unbelievable how Corona Virus has changed the world.
At Silentium Vietnam, we work on a daily basis with our partner in Germany. We have seen all ups and downs through the period, and looking at our collages in Germany is like looking at the future via a different lens. We are open; they shut down; We are, as of the time of writing, in the historical lockdown, our friends in Germany are likely back to their new-norm life (there's no more normal life that you used to know)
Let us tell you few tips that we have prepared for the historical moment
There are actually so many things that need to be prepared
Physically and mentally preparation
Although we have been on-off remote working for a while, we have never been super committed to work from home for a long period. The occasion is super severe, to take it lightly. There are few items that need to be checked
- [Physcial and mental] Try to set up a space that you can be comfortable spending 7, 8 hours at. Space, the best, would be separated from the living room. We, humans, are slaves of habit; having no separation between work and life will cause a bad work-life balance. Try your best to "separate work and life"
- [Physical] Setup every hour alarm, give a quick swing, look away from the monitor, take a gulp of water to keep you hydrated, do few very simple exercises. Science has proved that sitting still for a long time is a root cause of so many office worker diseases. Though, it is pretty easy to prevent with 2 or 3 minutes every few hours. "Adopt a good habit of keeping your body active and hydrated frequently"
- [Physical] Don't let you look down. Seriously, watch out for your neck posture
- [Mental] Don't work overtime, don't work on the weekend, find a new hobby. We all experience badly that working from home, staying home for a while suck. Let us tell you what is worst? Work more. Working more is actually makes you feel more stressed and becoming very obsessed with the work. And when you look back, you actually don't have a way out because you spend unparallel time of your week on work and you tend not to pick up different activities. Read books, mangas, watch movies, animes, do puzzles, origami, zen, yoga, whatever; pick up new habits to distract and balance your work-life
Team collaboration and effective meeting
At Silentium Vietnam, we are proud of our effort to go to the root of the problem we want to tackle, either it is a product, a project, or an operation works. As such, we do rely a lot on workshops, offline collaboration to get things done together. Here and here are few examples
The pandemic hit us and hit us hard. Here's how we optimize our toolsets to fight the pandemic
- Most of the workshops are now done on miro.com. Miro also bundles video calls inside which is very cool for organizing workshops.
- Agile operations are now done more appropriately to make sure we have the full team alignment. Normally, we take it less strictly because we did rely on the face-to-face operation
- Reminder, a lot of reminders on the team activities. For example, the dev team has the timing of 9:30 AM and 2:00 PM to team Pull Request review - these are only timings that you can request for a review
- Utilizing POP to pair design, pair code review. We admire screenhero.com till they got acquired by Slack and drop support to all coding features. Now the founder of screen hero came back and found pop, which is awesome
- Utilize Notion.so for a lot of documentation
- Figma, Slack, and a lot of
- Google Meet with a Spotify bot to play music daily, we set up a machine running 24/7 with an account of Spotify. The account joins Google Meet and plays music on request on Slack, we like this one quite a bit
Stay in touch, bonding, feel connected
We, Silentium Vietnam, have a pretty cool office right in the heart of Saigon; our office is just 3 minutes walking from the Notre-dame Cathedral. It is pity that we no longer can enjoy a beer over our chill views. We try our best to stay positive by having a chill moment every Friday afternoon
We have a super casual video call where we can
- E-meet (hell, I actually hate this word), and have a chance to hear everyone talking. It is especially important to people onboard right in the middle of the historical occasion
- Play a silly game where everyone so we look even more forward to the day we are back
- Get to know more about your peers, actually funny because the setting push us more open to everyone in the company
Pandemic is the tough timing
But it doesn't mean we need to be chaotic, demotivated, and disconnected. We actually try our best to turn this into an opportunity, team opportunity, individual opportunity, business opportunity to stay close even more, and hopefully, we will all survive the pandemic.
Cheers everyone, take Corona just as a beer