Working from home with… Waldir Pimentel Junior

Waldir Pimentel Junior (feel free to call him Junior) is an industry consultant for EMIA at Hexagon’s PPM division. In his role, he uses his 20 years of industry experience in IT and engineering to support and guide customers through their digital transformation journeys. When he’s not in the Hoofddorp office in the Netherlands, Junior is always on the move throughout EMIA, meeting and speaking with different customers.

Junior has given us a sneak peek into his working from home routine below.

What did you expect when you first started your WFH routine? Has there been anything that has surprised you?
I thought the transition to WFH full time would be pretty hard because of my role. Before WFH, I was always on the move, visiting customers, supporting user conferences, user forums, and then, in a blink of an eye, everything stopped.

It has been a nice surprise how quickly I have adapted to my full-time WFH routine, and it’s been great to see how our customers have adapted, too. Meetings that were supposed to be in person have now moved to online, and everybody – ourselves and our customers – are keeping to the previous pace of communication and project speed, which is great.

Have you found your routine and workflow in your WFH day has changed?
I’m used to WFH and WFR (working from the road), meeting calls in hotel rooms, airports, on the train, just not at the bar … the only discussions which should be taking place in the bar should be related to football, or soccer for my U.S. friends, although I could talk about the NFL for hours instead.

Jokes aside, even in the modus-operandi of a big tech company like Hexagon, I still haven’t felt any big changes in the way I work. My routine is much the same other than no physical in-person meetings taking place. As a whole, I feel there has been an overall shift/change in routine for Hexagon, with nearly everyone now WFH, but rising to the challenge.

Have these WFH changes affected your role? How?
My role as an industry consultant requires customer visits to perform workshops, live demos and engage in long meetings to share ideas. I usually have contact with the customer in the early phases of discussion. This is when we’re helping the customer with ideas on how to best approach a problem and reach an ideal solution. In the early phase meetings, there are many time-consuming activities that require a lot of focus and collaboration that have now become remote online meetings, which is definitely a change.

Doing my normal daily activities remotely and from home can be a bit complicated at times. This is because, by nature, it’s hard to keep everybody focused in front of a PC screen or involved in the discussion when the meeting can take half a day or more. When part of online meetings, you can still see your emails coming in, and at that moment, you take a “quick” look, and that’s it, your focus has been taken away.

Distractions are definitely happening, but we are only human. The stress about the future, our health and our family is on my mind, and I’m sure I’m not alone. Everybody needs to keep being digital so we can remain in contact, continue sharing ideas and get the most out of our meetings.

There can sometimes be distractions when WFH, how do you keep yourself motivated and focused throughout the day?
The key here is organization. I know this period is tough on everyone, and people are dealing with it in different ways. For myself, planning and setting out my stall is the best way for me to be prepared for the coming week(s). I prioritize tasks and important activities, especially those with customers and to ensure I am prepared and ready. I also have my “to-do” list of non-high priority tasks, which I can come back to at different points during the day/week and pop my thoughts/ideas into.

During your WFH day, has there been anything unexpected or outwith the ordinary occur?
Nothing unexpected or outwith the ordinary, but I am verifying the accuracy of the “Murphy’s law” as here in the Netherlands, we usually have 360 days of rain, clouds and strong winds a year. But since I have been WFH, we’ve been having sunny, warm and almost no-wind days, which is not the norm so very unexpected.

Staying at home is so important currently, so let’s keep helping by staying home so the important workers and professionals can support the people that really need assistance in these strange times.

What have you been enjoying the best/least about WFH?
I’m am really enjoying having more time with my family and more time for myself. I will admit I do miss traveling around the different regions and being in regular physical contact with people. As humans, we are social “animals,” so not currently being able to socialize with friends and colleagues isn’t great, but the video calls are helping.

With less of a commute in the morning and evenings, how have you been spending this extra time?
I’d like to be practicing my bass guitar more, but there have been a few new releases on Netflix that have caught my eye and delayed this. I’m also trying to improve my Dutch, which from 1 to 10 I’d say is currently on 0.9, but hopefully, with the extra time I have on my hands, this number will go up!

I have also been spending more time reading and improving my cooking skills, which has pleased my wife, and that puts a smile on my face and makes me very happy.

As you have been adapting to your WHF routine, do you have any tips and tricks for others?
Organization is not to be underestimated. Also, being aware of your mental health is something to keep tabs on. If I feel my energy is low and my schedule permits, I will take a break and work a little longer into the evening or start the next day earlier so I can try and keep my head focused on my tasks as much as possible. A tired mind is useless.

I also recommend limiting your news intake. Read and watch it, but don’t check it all the time as this can be very stressful. Read a good book, listen to some music, a podcast, a YouTube video or try to learn something new. Keep your mind focused on positive things by being busy.

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