At least once in our entire lifetime we have wished that we could just stay away from everyone and just enjoy some time home with our family. Well that wish seems to have been granted due to the recent corona outbreak in the world.
Working from home is a dream to most, but it comes with its own challenges. Mentally leaving “home mode” and entering “work mode” can be difficult if you never physically leave your house and your bed is only steps away. How can you actually become inspired to get work done in such cozy conditions?
For many modern professionals, working from home every once in a while is a luxury that our respective companies afford us. But which environment actually allows us to be more productive: the home office or the “office” office?
In the “office” office, your coworkers drop by your desk, engage you in conversation, and invite you to lunch. The social benefits of a workplace are definitely nice to have, but they can become a challenge if you’re easily distracted.
At the home office, however, I find that it’s easy for you to become your own worst enemy. Because when you’re not surrounded by coworkers, you’re free to drop those pesky inhibitions. At the home office, no one’s watching. You don’t necessarily feel that same peer pressure or communal obligation to get stuff done. (Also: You don’t have to wear pants.)
This handy guide helps you maximize your newfound freedom (and responsibility). These tips don’t only apply to individual contributors, but also managers and team leaders.
Although working from home was once a luxury, it is now a mainstay among large companies and small businesses. The key reason? Productivity. Working from home is great, but it can be problematic if it’s not well managed.
Let’s dig into the tips and best practices for working from home.
1.Confirm the preferred method of communication that’s appropriate for your team.
When working from home the most important thing while working in team is communication. It is Imperative that your communication is uninterrupted and working at all the times.
Make sure your internet connections telephone connections is well configured and properly set up. It has become even more important since the current global pandemic has resulted in lockdown in many places.
First of all, follow the protocol set by your company and your boss. If your company tells you to work from home, do it. If your company tells you otherwise, follow their instructions. Work with your team to figure out the best ways to replicate the kind of communication you have in the office. You will be better served by staying in touch via Slack throughout the day, sticking with emails, or having Skype or Zoom check-ins.
2.Dedicate a Space and Organize It
You, like many people, probably have a dedicated workspace at your office. Your desk, your chair, your computer, your pictures, your reminders on Post-it notes stuck all over your space, everything, all of it, is about to go away for a while. One way to eliminate some of the stress of working from home is to choose a space and dedicate it to be your new workspace for the foreseeable future. Some of us are fortunate enough to have a home office or at least a desk at home which fits the bill. For those who do not, a kitchen or coffee table may be called up to serve this purpose. Whatever it is that you end up choosing, taking some time to organize your workspace and gathering up important items like pens, pads, post-its, laptop and phone chargers, etc. can alleviate the anxiety. Find a place that’s comfortable, consider an area that gets plenty of natural light and allows you to stay in place while plugging away at that project without straining your back (or your bum for that matter).
3.Create Routines and Stick to Them
We all have our own set of routines when it comes to our working day. Some of us are early risers and find that getting into the office before anyone else gives the ability to crank out some uninterrupted morning productivity. If you’re not an early riser, that’s okay, but it is important to maintain something resembling a routine in order to keep stress to a minimum. Make yourself get up out of bed at the same time as normal. Take regular breaks and lunches at the same time you normally would. Keep distractions to a minimum by resisting the temptation to flip on the TV, surf social media or browse the pantry between emails.
4.Got kids at home? Plan a daily schedule to keep those cuties busy.
If you’re on your own juggling work and kids, give yourself permission to plop the kids in front of a movie when you’re working on your most high-value tasks.
Plan activities for the day to keep kids entertained while they are at home. Make a run to the local drugstore or dollar store for coloring books and crayons or other age-appropriate activities. Plan out a simple schedule for your children to follow, and schedule quiet activities – like a movie – during your high visibility meetings
Don’t feel guilty over emergency screen time. Kids are resilient. This is an unusual situation, and the fact that you’re balancing remote work and childcare on the fly makes you the parent of the year.
5.Take a Breath of Fresh Air
Since you’ll be cooped up indoors to work, many of us often forget that there’s an outside world out there. Open some windows to let sunlight in and take some time throughout your day to go outside – at least to your patio or backyard
Speaking of lunch, if you have a ready space outdoors to scarf down a sandwich at lunch, consider taking it outside. The benefits of fresh air and sunlight can do wonders for you. If you’re an apartment dweller without a space to throw a chair out in the yard, try finding a window with some good natural light and open it up next to you while you eat. Be creative and make the most out of what you have.
6.Stay Off Social Media
I think we can agree that we are all guilty of this one from time to time. Social media can be a giant time-suck if you aren’t careful.
That is more time than most people spend sleeping or working! Furthermore, many mobile apps now reveal to users how much time they spend in each one. This is eye-opening, especially for casual social media users.Get familiar with your company’s social media guidelines. They might even want you to engage in their approved channels like LinkedIn.
Minimizing mindless use of social media helps avoid distractions, so you can focus on getting more done.
SOME FINAL TIPS FOR YOUR HOME OFFICE
Consider getting exercise equipment for short breaks. Things like resistance bands, small weights, or even a treadmill can help keep your blood flowing on a long work day.
Stock up on supplies. You’ll still need pens, paper, and other work supplies in your home office. Make sure you are always stocked.
Dress for work. Just because you have the option to work in your underwear, doesn’t mean you should.
Hope these few tips help you work from home better and make your experience comfortable.
Stay home and Stay safe!