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Read the latest news and blogs from The Data Lab and Scotland’s data science community.

Zoom screenshot showing lots of people in fancy dress

Working from home, a silver lining and some links for you

Blog by Gina Finch, The Data Lab

At The Data Lab, it’s been quite an adjustment to have everybody working from home full time, for the foreseeable. We’ve been really well supported in the transition, making good use of tools such as Slack and Team for staying in touch. Having daily chats where we all get together for a blether, as well as virtual team meetings to discuss business.

We’ve been encouraged to share our home stories – morning “commute” pictures, news on pets and kids, recipes we’ve tried and we’ve been sharing the entertaining social media posts of others experiencing #workingfromhomelife. Last Friday, we had Dress up Friday on Zoom, where most people donned wigs or other fancy dress items. Very entertaining!

Understanding that our working lives will be disrupted

There’s been a lot of understanding that these are extraordinary times, and that having the kids/cats/dogs/partners around is highly likely to cause a little disruption to your normal daily work schedule. We’ve also felt looked after in terms of being aware of our mental health, being allowed to feel that we should be caring for ourselves a little more than normal and making sure we take the time to exercise and socialise online.

I’m writing this sitting on a bean bag on my kitchen floor so I can keep an eye on my 11 year old while he gets his daily outdoor/exercise activity going out on our pond on a boat!

You need to see the silver lining

People have talked about the silver linings of these difficult times on social media. I think that this experience is going to bring us even closer together as a company, which is ironic given that we’re all experiencing enforced social distancing and are geographically further apart than we’ve ever been! We’re getting a little bit more insight into our colleagues’ home lives – in fact even seeing into their homes!

Perhaps this could also be used as an opportunity to upskill or retrain through online learning courses? Or expanding your knowledge into new areas of data science by listening to some of our fascinating podcasts? I’ve put together some links below which could help you to make the most of your time at home.

I’m looking forward to the day when we can finally get together in our offices again. Meanwhile, we’ll keep supporting each other from a distance to help make a difference for Scotland wherever we can and perhaps we’ll even come out of this experience with some new and interesting ideas.

Some things to do while you Stay at Home

Online learning: Take this opportunity to upskill or retrain

We have a wide range of data science and AI online learning courses that you could do while you’re at home. Our Driving Value from Data course will next run on 20th April, plus there are a wide range of other courses in a variety of areas that may be of interest to you.

Podcasts: Want some company at home?

Check out our podcasts with some of the big names in data science: Kirk Borne, Liberty Vittert, Stephanie Hare, Christopher Wylie, Joanna Bryson and many more.

Technical Blogs from our Data Science Team

For those of you looking for some more gritty data science reading – check out the technical blogs written by our Data Science Team. We’re sure you’ll find something to get your teeth into here.

Some recommended reading from our Executive Education Adviser Craig Paterson

Immerse yourself in the topics of digital, data, AI and how these changes may impact our lives

 

We’ve shared a few links with each other that you might find useful for your own experiences of working from home.

This was written for/by PhD students but is relevant to home working as well:
PhD’s, pandemics, productivity by the Scottish Graduate School for Arts & Humanities
https://sgsahblog.wordpress.com/2020/03/17/phds-pandemics-productivity/

A free collection of content called “Weathering the Storm” from the Headspace app:
https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

Yale’s most popular class ever is available free online — The Science of Wellbeing:
https://www.businessinsider.com/coursera-yale-science-of-wellbeing-free-course-review-overview

New to Working Remotely? These resources from Linkedin could help:
https://learning.linkedin.com/blog/productivity-tips/new-to-working-remotely–these-resources-can-help

The ultimate guide to remote meetings in 2020. Learn how to set up effective virtual meetings with distributed team members:
https://slackhq.com/ultimate-guide-remote-meetings

And so you can get on with doing some work, here’s a great list of links for entertaining and educating the kids:
https://www.facebook.com/jean.worsley/posts/10156608078391076

One of our training exercises involved giving 3 tips each for working from home, some quite good advice in here (hover over the text for a description of each item):
https://www.well-sorted.org/output/DataLabRemoteWorkingTips/index.php#TreeMap 

Also, check out our CEO Gillian Docherty’s blog “A week is a long time…” for her experiences of helping her team transition to working from home.

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