Working from home either brings out your inner perfectionist or your lazy, unorganised side, and during a pandemic, it is necessary to spur on our most productive characteristics. As much as the idea of working from home seems like the ideal situation, it brings a lot of challenges that working in an office doesn’t prepare us for. Below are six tips for staying productive while working remotely.
1. Maintain a consistent schedule
Consistency is key. Although you are no longer physically going into the office, maintaining a consistent schedule can assist with getting into the right mindset for a productive day. Do everything you would usually do, like taking a shower and getting dressed before you sit down to start your day. Maintain this way of thinking throughout your day, like taking a lunch break at a specific time and ending your day the same way you usually would.
2. Create the right environment
It is highly recommended that you draw the line between work and personal space within your house. Creating a space that limits distractions and allows easy workflow will help you maintain a high level of productivity.
- Organise your desk
- Make the office space comfortable
- Have a desk, as well as chairs or couches for relaxing during breaks
3. Don’t be afraid to call
You no longer have the luxury of walking over to ask someone a question. How do you get around that? Don’t be afraid to call. Make communicating with co-workers a regular occurrence and rather call them on the phone instead of emailing back and forth which could take all day.
4. Maintain a connection with your team
Working from home can cause us to lose sight of our overall goals or impact within an organisation because we don’t get to physically see it. Things like group chats, happy hour, and video conferencing allow us to connect with the people we spent a lot of time with, working to achieve a shared goal.
5. Reflect on your work
Take time out to reflect on your work, analyse your thinking, and consider your level of productivity. If you don’t do it, who will? Working remotely means you don’t have managers or co-workers readily available to assist you with advice or constructive criticism.
- Track your time and write down how you spend it (every 1-2 hours)
- Make a schedule and write tasks down on your calendar
- Be honest with yourself and point out areas where you can improve
6. Set boundaries
Remember, productivity does not only mean working hard. Setting clear boundaries will help you maintain the energy to continue working productively. This includes setting clear working hours, communicating with your team when you are unavailable, and sticking to those times. Dedicate time to your family, your hobbies, and anything else that you would do outside of work, to maintain a healthy mind.
Working from home or anywhere you haven’t worked before can be challenging because you are expected to do everything yourself. However, there are many benefits to this as well, and following the tips above will lead you to a happy, productive remote experience.