Member Spotlight: Gemma Donnelly - Workplace
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Member Spotlight: Gemma Donnelly

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
85 blog posts

Legal Advisor Gemma Donnelly is one of Workplace’s long standing hot desk members. Not only is she a whizz with litigations, legal writing and trials, but she’s also a keen yoga enthusiast and hiking pro.

We sat down to ask her all of our burning member spotlight questions.

Describe your business in fewer than 15 words
A nationwide team of innovative, creative and technically outstanding mechanical and electrical engineering consultants.

What inspired you to start/join your company?
The ability to develop a fundamental role within a company I liked and respected, from a personal and professional perspective.

Where’s your favourite place for lunch?
Katsouris – a family run greek deli with charm.

What’s your favourite business app, tool or website?
My personal network.

What’s the best piece of advice you have been given?
If you are in your comfort zone you’re not moving forward.

Tell us your best joke or share your party trick?
I can make a chicken from a tea towel… does that count haha.

What’s the one thing people should come to you for advice about?
What Manchester has to offer – having lived here nearly 8 years I love it!

When you are not working what are you normally found doing?
Yoga, hiking, exploring independent coffee shops and trying new cuisine.

How can people learn more about what you’re doing?
Ask me – I love to meet new people and develop relationships.

Up Next

Five ways to stop work interrupting your home life

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
85 blog posts

When you work remotely as a freelancer or an entrepreneur, you step away from the normal barriers of working hours. It can be incredibly hard, at the end of each day, to focus on anything else. With modern technology this is especially hard; you can often carry the entire office in your pocket, 24 hours a day.

So, what simple steps can you take to ensure you are splitting the two areas of your life, feeling fulfilled both at home and at work?

1. Separate your personal social media from work

Social media is hugely important to promote and grow your small business. Over-promoting to your friends, however, can be boring for your personal friends. What’s more, sharing personal information to work contacts can be unprofessional, sharing more personal details than you would choose to.

This also gives you a cut off point for work, so you can carefully balance your professional and personal life. Check and update these feeds separately, at designated and appropriate times, rather than simultaneously.

2. Create diary notes for home and work

It is really hard in business, especially a new one that absorbs all your time, to say no to the demands of your clients or potential customers. There are times when personal life is more important.

Significant personal events such as birthdays, your kids’ concerts or even going to the gym are essential to your success at work, as much as your personal life. Highlight any events you’d like to attend by putting them firmly in your diary, and saying no to work occasionally.

There are lots of great platforms that can help you be more organised in both areas. These include making more use of your phone diary and to do lists, to downloading separate journal systems like bullet journals.

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3. Practice mindfulness

This isn’t as ‘hippy’ as it sounds! One of the best times to practice just ten minutes of mindfulness is at the time you’d like to finish work and hop back in to your home life.

There are some great apps available for this, one of our favourites is Headspace but there are many more.

4. Be in control

If you work with a team of people, whether you’re the boss or have busy, demanding colleagues, make sure that you draw the line when you need to. It can be very easy to spend too much time chatting or having an end-of-day beer with your colleagues.

Sometimes this is important to your professional life, but on other occasions this can be an unwanted intrusion to your time at home. If you are the boss, be the boss; make sure you don’t blur the lines, or raise expectations that you’re available 24/7. There are times when work can wait and should wait — make this clear to your colleagues.

5. Don’t take work home

Are you the person who always has more work to finish? Do you ever take it home to finish later? Ask yourself if it really needs to be taken home. If you want to give the correct focus to your work and home life, the best advice is do not take work home… ever!

This habit is certainly a bad one, but habits can be changed. Taking work home should be saved for very unique circumstances.

This is why so many people are moving away from home offices and working in shared workspaces like Workplace instead. Having separate venues for work and home really helps define and separate your home life from your work life, ensuring you’re productive both professionally and personally.

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