New Year’s Eve - my retrospective of year 1 #WFH

One year ago I started working from home for the first time in my life. As everyone may imagine it all started with the covid pandemic. And as the year comes to an end, one may sit down and collect the memories and experiences of the passing year. And so do I today, on the last evening of the passing year one (WFH calendar).

Looking back I am realizing quite a lot has been going on in the last 12 months. There have been disappointing and even sad moments happening throughout the year. But at the same time I am grateful that I was able to experience fabulous moments and very many happy episodes as well. 2020 has changed our lives significantly and I’d like to share some of my brightest and saddest moments with you all.


  • I got connected with this amazing MOT community and had numerous entertaining, educating and cheerful virtual coffee dates.
  • I participated at online conferences, unconferences and meetups. I would have probably not been able to join in person due to the distance.
  • I feel much more comfortable using all the different virtual facilitation tools and I am even able to help others use them.
  • Spending so much time at home, I had the opportunity to expand my gardening skills on our balcony. And thanks to the great summertime, I had the opportunity to make some of my calls and meetings outside while enjoying the beauty of the balcony. I saw busy bumble bees while my colleagues hummed in my ears.
  • I came across the Risksphere cards and ordered a deck for myself. Following, I had some interesting conversations about it (crosslink #virtualcoffee) and somehow one thing led to another and I ran a RiskStormingOnline session at TesenaFest last November. This month I added being an official RiskStormingOnline instructor to my portfolio. So, yay for this community and coincidence.
  • Inspired by various posts, webinars and sessions, I started the first mob testing session in the company. Today, paring and mob sessions are integrated into our test setup.
  • On 21st January 2021, the book “21st Century Skill For Tester” was published by Emna Ayadi and Ard Kramer and I am happy that I could contribute an article to it.
  • My social life largely transitioned into a virtual social life. I am not so happy that it has turned out this way, but I am grateful to live in a time and environment where technology is available to maintain our relationships even though we have to physically distance ourselves.

Boo’s (yes, there happened definitely boo’s that year)

  • I miss the spontaneous chats around the tea kettle in the office and a scoop of ice cream from the Italian gelateria to celebrate the end of the day at work with an office mate and friend
  • In December, it hit me hard. A family member fell ill with covid, and one day before Christmas he was sent into quarantine. Due to the severity of the disease, his recovery is still ongoing.
  • And, oh yes, I’m struggling with Zoom fatigue, especially at the moment after the long winter period and as we go through our second lockdown, which started in December. Some days I feel like I can’t take any more video calls.
  • Our team dynamics have changed, in general people have changed. While I understand all the frustration and moodiness as I go through the same thing, I have to distance myself from some of the people at times for the sake of my own well being

As I write this, I am sitting at my workplace at home, where it all started a year ago. I can’t believe it’s been going on for so long. And I will probably spend a few more months here. As much as I don’t appreciate the reason why it all started originally, I do appreciate most of my experiences over the past year.

With that said,
Happy New Year and all the best!

So, how is it for you? What have been your most remarkable moments of the year? Or does life just feel like ‘Groundhog Day’?


Happy New Year @andreajensen :slight_smile:

Almost coming on to a full year of working from home for me too, though I have been in the office several times since. Those short spells were a nice break from the new routine.
However, the great thing is that my employer now has changed my status to be a full time home worker, which I like. It means a lot less commuting for me.

Sorry to hear about your family member. Hope he will see through it :muscle:

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I was doing one day a week WFH before the pandemic; but since I’ve been full-time WFH, I’ve noticed something odd. We have our daily stand-up via MS Teams, so I’ve seen many of my colleagues’ home environments. But when we have quick conversations via Chat or even 1-2-1s for some operational reason or other, video usually isn’t switched on by default, and I automatically visualise the conversation taking place with the other person in the office (especially if it involves someone from outside my immediate test team). That’s just weird.

Thanks Peet, he is on the recovery trail. Hope he is coming back to normal in the next weeks/months.

Yay for your WFH contract :+1:

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Oh that sounds interesting, I haven’t seen some team members for a year now (no cam folks). So I am talking now to little black squares, not sure how it will be once I have to look into faces again :grin: