3 min read

Mike Ashurst: Working from home

Working from home header
Caution! This article is 4 years old, and our opinions may have changed.

So Covid-19 has hit the UK pretty hard in recent times, meaning a lot of business’ have either had to close due to the government guidelines or staff have had to revert to working from home. We’re lucky in the sense that we are able to work remotely and it doesn’t affect us too much, the only big effect it seems to be having is client meetings. It’s always better to have face to face meetings, but that is just not possible lately.

Find out how we're dealing with Covid-19


My Workspace

My workspace is very minimal, we were lucky in the sense that we were allowed to pack up all our stuff from the studio, and bring them home... so I have brought home my desk, and computer and set it up at home.
I had to salvage an old chair from my mums as I don't have one here but it does the job.
I have my trusty companion with me, although she doesn't get much work done... she mainly walks around my desk, sits on my chair when I get up and meows for food all day, but it's a nice change of scenery from what I'm used to working in the Shape Studio in Atherton.

Zoom Calls

Every morning we have a group Zoom call, this is to voice any concerns with our work, have a catch up on where we’re at and if we’re on target for hitting our deadlines. It’s also good to have a good (although brief) catch up with each other, as we obviously don’t see each other anymore.

Daily Check ins

We have daily check ins from Andy, the 8:30 Zoom call, followed by a 1:30, and 4:30 check in, this is to help keep some sort of structure within the studio. This allows us all to be the most productive we can be, by giving us smaller deadlines which I have found really helps.


We use Slack a lot whilst in the studio, it’s used to share inspirational sites, general chit chat, and seeing over briefs and documents to each other… Slack has been great during this period, it’s quick, easy and nice to use… I honestly couldn’t imaging trying to work without it!


In case you haven’t read our blog about Trello, Trello is a very simple online tool to help you organise yourself/your team and your projects, making everything a whole lot easier. We have been using Trello so that we can easily see what our current projects are, along with deadlines and targets to hit.
It's been an invaluable tool during the last 3 to 4 weeks whilst we've all been working from home.

Dog Groomers

One of the main perks of working from home is my wife owns her own dog groomers, which is directly below our flat, so I have set up my desk in the groomers… it’s been great meeting all the new dogs on a day to day basis, I was getting used to seeing so many different dogs until the business was forced to close due to the UK lockdown rules.

Dog compilation


During this period, I’ve been able to mix up my training a little due to the extra time I get from not having to commute to and from work, I have been able to get out on the bike sometimes an hour earlier after work, which has helped as I’m not out until 9pm on a weeknight..


One of the main things I’ve found which has affected me whilst working remotely is that because we’re all working from home, we’re unable to quickly give someone a nudge and ask them a question about a project, this can be quite disruptive to my creativity as I have to open Slack or Zoom and write my question, and if my message isn’t seen straight away, I find myself sitting waiting for a reply.

Another thing is the studio atmosphere, it can get pretty quiet working from home, with no time for our usual catch up/ playing games at lunch, it almost feels like I’m working for myself at times.

All in all, I can’t wait to get back to some normality, at first I thought I would prefer working from home, but as it’s turned out.. I quite dislike it. Studio life is all about being around like-minded people, having banter, and catching up on each others lives, whilst still getting our work done.. this is obviously lost during the time we're all working remotely

Hopefully life can start to get back to normal sooner rather than later, fingers crossed! 🤞

Hiya, I'm Mike - Web designer at Shape. My articles usually consist of design related stuff.