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Here's How These St. Louisans Adjusted To Work-From-Home Life Years Ago

"St. Louis on the Air" production assistant Joshua Phelps' work-from-home setup.
Joshua Phelps
"St. Louis on the Air" production assistant Joshua Phelps' work-from-home setup.

Stay-at-home orders have many employees packing up their work equipment and figuring out a way to mimic their office space and routines at home. But the adjustment can be tough: Add partners, kids and pets to the mix, and it’s not an average workday at all.

But for some, that was reality long before this pandemic. And they’re making it work. 

two-year Stanford University study found that working from home can increase productivity, decrease stress, allow flexibility and be cost-effective — as people can save from not spending money on coffee, lunches and a professional wardrobe, while companies can save by reducing office space. 

Of course, there are potential drawbacks. And that’s particularly the case when two adults are working from the same space. On Monday, St. Louis on the Air checked in with two people who have long nailed their at-home routines, despite having both partners in close quarters. They shared advice for staying productive even when you don’t have a space of your own. 

Hailey Huffines' workspace in her south St. Louis house.
Credit Hailey Huffines
Hailey Huffines' work space in her south St. Louis house.

Joining host Sarah Fenske for the discussion were Hailey Huffines, a designer and editor for McClatchy Publishing Center. She shares a house in south St. Louis with her boyfriend, who also works from home as a musician, along with their dog and two cats.

Joining the discussion was Nichole Fink. She’s a stay-at-home mom in Lafayette Square who figured out how to coexist with her working-from-home husband. Now, with schools closed, their older child is also at home, and their trio has become a quartet.

Listen to the full conversation: 

St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Alex Heuer, Emily Woodbury, Evie Hemphill, Lara Hamdan and Joshua Phelps. The engineer is Aaron Doerr, and production assistance is provided by Charlie McDonald.

Send questions and comments about this story to feedback@stlpublicradio.org.

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Lara is the Engagement Editor at St. Louis Public Radio.
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