10 tips to staying productive while remote working
2020 April 08
For many professionals, working from home every once in a while is a luxury that allows for full concentration and finally checking off that to-do list. However, in 2017 5 percent of United States employees worked from home! This allows these employees to completely focus on the task at hand and not get caught up in the office chit-chat.
On the other hand, due to the current extension of social distancing, that number has quickly sky-rocketed to an unknown number.
For most, it offers a number of benefits that make the short commute from their bedroom to home office and flexible work hours which is awesome, but for others, adjusting to working from home routine is a bit harder.
You become your own worst enemy. There is no one there to watch you and Netflix is one single power button away. Not only because of this, but this can also be because of a full-house of family members!
Yes, adjusting to working from home is not easy even for those who enjoy it, but with these 10 work from home tips, you will be checking off your to-do list in no time.
1. Create boundaries
Working from home does allow for a bit more flexibility in the common 9-5 grind, but this flexibility can easily turn into a free for all. This is why it is important to make sure all boundaries are set in the very beginning. These 10 work from home tips could all be examples of setting boundaries.
Let family members know you will be working from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will have lunch with them from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., and after that, you will be working until 5 p.m.- ish.
While your daily commute is now cut down to minutes, still get up at 7 a.m. to get ready, make breakfast and have your morning coffee to login in by 9 a.m. Whatever your normal routine would be before the daily commute to work, stick to it! Even the Center for Disease Control and other large healthcare organizations are telling everyone to continue to stick to a normal as possible schedule.
3. Mimic your work schedule
What do you do at work? Do you walk into the office, get situated, make coffee and get logged into your laptop for the day? Start there and mimic the normal routine and schedule as you normally would. Make sure to hold internal and external meetings still that are regularly scheduled. This not only helps with communication and leadership during this moment but keeps your schedule on track.
4. Limit happy hour to one hour
Please, for your sanity and health, limit happy hour to one hour a day. Do not make a mimosa at 10 a.m. in the morning even if you are not working. If you would like to have a drink with your co-workers like you regularly do, hold a virtual happy hour each Friday at a time everyone can agree to.
Patience is a virtue and slow wifi does not call for patience. It is estimated that there has been a surge in internet usage up to 70 percent and companies are trying to accommodate this surge with free data, hot spots and increased MBs for wifi. It will work out. Simply let work and co-workers know that wifi is a bit slow and you are working through it as best as possible.
6. Put the distractions away
TikTok, social media, remote controllers and cell-phones should all be put away or out of arm's reach to easily grab. While adjusting to working from home, this can be one of the biggest tips for productivity. If you find yourself reaching for your cell phone, create a boundary. You can check your phone during lunch and for two 15 minutes breaks and that is it.
7. Figure out your best work hours
Kids, parents and other co-workers are on different types of schedules more than usual right now, which means, find the best hours that work for you! If you are a morning person, get all your important tasks done before the kids or other employees login for the day. If you are a night owl, get those tasks done that you need to focus on a bit more. This is all dependent on your company’s policies and project deadlines, but for the moment, most companies will work with their employees.
8. Keep yourself accountable
Accountability is going to be your best friend. Sure, you can make a 100 different excuses but at the end of the day, all of the tasks still have to be done. So, hold yourself accountable, and if this is hard for you, have a trusted employee keep you accountable.
9. Stay connected
It is easy to start feeling like you are alone in quarantine or have not had adult interaction in months when it has only been weeks, so keep connected with employees and family.
As always, be kind to yourself. This is probably the most important work from home tips that we can put on this list. In moments of uncertainty and confusion, it can be easy to get down on yourself. You might be working a bit less than normal, things can be harder to be alone all the time, missing family and so many other emotions going on.
Take it hour by hour and even if you can only give 30 percent that day, hey you still gave 30 percent. Tomorrow you will give 80 percent and from there keep moving forward. You will more than likely have waves during the next couple of weeks where one week you are super productive and accomplishing everything, and the next week you can barely get five tasks done.
Hang in there and give it your all each day!
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