Culture

Larry Magid: With a few tweaks, working from home can be more pleasurable


When I started writing about working from home due to the pandemic, I never thought I’d be writing about it again in 2022, but here we are. The

Larry Magid (Gary Reyes / Mercury News)

omicron variant has caused many workplaces to either continue their work-at-home policies or reinstate them. I’m hoping that this surge will be gone soon but — given the history of the past two years — I’m not banking on a return to normal any time soon.

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As hard as it was to make the transition from commuting to working at home and/or having our kids schooled from home, most of us thought it would be for a short period when we started this process around March of 2020. But we’re now going on two years, and based on what I’m hearing from friends, people are getting tired of it. Personally, the pandemic hasn’t changed my daily work schedule because I’ve been writing and broadcasting from home for many years. But a big part of my work has always been traveling and meeting with people locally or in other parts of the world, and those meetings are not happening except on Zoom or a rare in-person outdoor meeting.

Equipment and lighting

I’ve already written about the technology you need to work or study from home, and it’s not complicated. You mostly need a good internet connection and a device with a webcam. The only two things that many people overlook is good lighting and a decent microphone. Lighting is very important and not that hard to set-up. I’m happy with my home office’s overhead lights, but not everyone has those. If you can, put in a tall lamp so you have light coming from above or lights in front of you that provide illumination but don’t blind you. Back lighting is usually a bad idea, and it’s also usually a bad idea to sit in front of an undraped window during daylight hours. If people are having trouble hearing or understanding you, consider an inexpensive USB microphone or headset. Because I also do radio and TV interviews, I generally use a relatively high-end broadcast microphone, but I’m pretty impressed by the sound quality of my Sennheiser Consumer Audio Sennheiser PC 8 USB – Stereo USB Headset, available on Amazon for $22.50. USB microphones start at under $30, and almost any external microphone is likely to be better than the ones built into laptops and webcams. Having said that, I’ve been impressed by the sound of some built-in mics, so try what you have …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment

      

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