Many Americans are going on their 10th month of working remotely due to the coronavirus pandemic. While 78 percent of working professionals state their company plans to return to onsite work eventually, it’s still unclear when that will be able to safely happen. Many companies have announced they don’t plan to go back to the office until at least summer 2021, including Target, Airbnb, and Uber. Due to this reality, there’s no better time to re-evaluate your home office and see how you can maximize your work-from-home experience. Here are five tips from our Women in Retail Leadership Circle members on how to improve your work-from-home routine and spruce up your WFH space.

1. Evaluate Your Lighting

Michelle Farabaugh, former Chief Marketing Officer, Harry & David, and WIRLC member's, home office.

Michelle Farabaugh’s home office

“I bought an on-camera LED light for Zoom calls. Even though I have a wall of windows in my office, on overcast days, early in the morning or late in the day, it can look like I’m sitting in the dark on Zoom calls. That isn’t the case with this great light that sits on a tripod so I can move it around.” — Michelle Farabaugh, former chief marketing officer, Harry & David

2. Help Your Dog Stay Quiet

“I bought an ultrasonic dog training device that tells Theo, our golden retriever, to stop barking and come tell me about the stranger walking past our house. It has been great as I don’t have to mute a call and yell for him to stop barking.” — Michelle Farabaugh, former chief marketing officer, Harry & David

3. Invest in Blue Light Glasses

“I realized my eyes were starting to really bother me. We always spend a lot of time on our computers, but with work-from-home, even meetings are on the computer now. I ordered a pair of reading glasses with blue light lenses. They greatly reduce headaches, dry eye, and restlessness due to digital eye fatigue.” — Michelle Farabaugh, former chief marketing officer, Harry & David

4. Create a Dedicated Workspace

“After the first few months, I realized I needed a dedicated space, but options to move around. Being home offers that comfort to work from the couch or your deck, but having the dedicated workspace was a must. If you can, get your kitchen back! I’ve found that having a window in my workspace was also so good for my mental state. — Kathryn Schaff, director of women’s merchandising, Duluth Trading Company

5. Do a Total Home Office Makeover

“My fiancé and I moved into our first home during the pandemic. He made my office go from this

Annie Krikorian’s home office before

to that

Annie Krikorian’s home office after

I also splurged on a Herman Miller chair, an ergonomic set-up (including an ergonomic mouse), and a large monitor. I’m an attorney for retail clients and do a lot of reading. It has helped save my eyes and my body.” — Annie Krikorian, external general counsel for Apex Parks Group and Torrid

What upgrades have you made to your work-from-home space that have increased your productivity? Let us know on our forum!