Posted on Mar 25th 2020.
In recent years, we have seen a large increase in the amount of businesses offering employees the ability to work remotely, also known as working from home.
Whether it’s avoiding busy Friday afternoon traffic or being able to continue working if you don’t want to spread possible germs to the rest of the office, this kind of flexibility in working environment is a major benefit to employees – but it doesn’t come without it’s challenges.
Being able to work from the comfort of your own home might sound like a great idea, but you’d be surprised how many people actually struggle with it.
In light of recent events that are likely causing many of us to work from home, here’s some top tips for making sure your remote working goes as smoothly as possible.
One of the most important steps and one we can’t stress enough is to get yourself up and get dressed for the day.
You don’t necessarily have to wear the same type of clothes that you would usually wear in the office, but actually taking the time to get ready and put on a fresh set of clothes will do you the world of good.
Something as simple as a change of clothes can prove to be a huge benefit when it comes to productivity, as failure to get dressed for the day can lead to a lazy attitude towards work. Finding motivation at home can be tricky at the best of times, so start your day off the right way.
You’d struggle to find many people who can stay productive while still in their pyjamas.
An area that a lot of people fall down on when working at home is deciding the actual hours they are working.
We’ve found that setting a regular working schedule is so important to staying on track and keeping things as normal as possible. Sticking to a schedule that you’re used to working will help to get you adjusted to switching into work mode whilst still at home, and helps with the work/home life balance.
It’s nice to have a lie in every once in a while, but treating working from home like a holiday is the wrong mindset.
By failing to set yourself regular working hours, you’ll often find yourself working late into the night and you will struggle to distinguish work time and home time.
Keep things standard and stick to a regular schedule.
Although working from home sounds relaxing, it can have a negative impact if you let it.
As we’ve just touched on, striking the perfect work/home life balance is essential for anyone that is remote working. Without the right mindset, you can find yourself either getting too distracted or getting too attached.
If you’re working from home, you need a dedicated work space away from your main rooms. Where possible, you need a space that is free from distractions, and somewhere you can close the door and leave once you’ve clocked off for the evening.
This idea of being able to leave the room after work will help to maintain a working mindset, and will allow you to enjoy your time at home without having any work looming over you.
If you have a spare room, now is the time to make full use of it.
Depending on the type of work you usually do, we recommend making daily lists of goals that you want to complete that day.
Setting out a clear schedule of what needs to be done that day can be so helpful when trying to keep productive, which is something that many people struggle with when taken out of an office environment.
If you know that you’ve got a lot of work to be getting on with, splitting it up into sizeable amounts can make it feel a lot less overwhelming.
Even though most of us are completely digital now, we still recommend using a notepad to write down these tasks, as being able to physically cross tasks off the list is great for feeling like you’re making progress.
Moving on from the previous section, it’s so important to tackle things one at a time instead of all at once.
Once you’ve got your list of tasks to do that day, make your way through it one at a time. If you try and do multiple things at once, you’re only going to deliver a lesser product in the end.
It might sound like you’re getting more done by trying to multi-task, but in reality you are completing tasks to a poorer standard, often needing to be re-done later down the line.
Instead of getting stressed out by the amount of work that needs to be done, start at the top of the list and go from there. You’d be surprised how much more productive you are by following the method instead.
Considering you’ll be spending most of your time on your own, it’s not hard to see why so many people feel isolated when working from home.
Maintaining frequent communication with the other members of the team is so important from both a productivity and mental health point of view.
Being able to check in with managers and other staff will help to maintain a normal working relationship between the team, and make things much easier when keeping track of what work has been done.
This is especially important if you are an employer, as keeping tabs on what everyone’s up to and the work that still needs to be done is crucial.
The use of messaging software and task completion tools is very helpful for anyone that has remote workers in their team. If your team doesn’t currently have anything like this set up, you can find some very useful pieces of software such as Slack and Asana that are free of charge to use.
Even if you’ve followed every step on this list, there’s always going to be the slightest temptation to go into the other room and stick the TV on, so finding something to keep you motivated is essential.
Something that we’ve often found helps a lot to keep you focused during working hours is listening to music. A good playlist can keep things running smoothly, and offers enough entertainment without being too distracting.
Putting headphones in and listening to some of your favourite music can actually help you feel more locked in and focused, boosting productivity.
Some people recommend keeping the TV on in the background, but we find the visual is too distracting and will ultimately lead to less work getting done.
And that’s our list! Working from home can be a challenge if you let it, so it’s so important that you follow these steps in order to keep a healthy and productive working schedule.
Have you got any tips for anyone working remotely? We’d love to hear your suggestions.
Feel free to tweet us @wurkplaceltd your ideas. Let’s get the conversation started!
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