Top Tips for Working from Home
Government has implemented containment measures aimed at reducing the spread of the COVID-19 virus. This has resulted in millions of people the country suddenly find themselves working from home. How can you ensure you remain productive while working remotely? How do make sure that your work-life balance remains intact?
Even as the coronavirus crisis eventually recedes, many employers will have discovered that they don’t need large office buildings, and many employees will have discovered that they don’t need to be in the office every day or spend hours commuting. Employees could find themselves working remotely a few days every week, and to make sure you reach your daily work objectives, some planning is required to ensure you have the right working environment and support.
It is unlikely that people have dedicated home offices already set up, and many remote employees are now figuring their new work space, learning new technologies to enable to work remotely.
Top tips to make working remotely effective and productive
- First off, lets find the right spot for you to set up your remote office. You are going to have to find a space that is away from the main living and recreation areas in your home. Why? It is going to important in the long-run to separate “work” and “not-work” activities. To keep your sanity, and the hope of a healthy relationship with your family, keep the spaces apart as much as possible. Hopefully you have a space that you can close up after hours. Separate your work and living spaces
- I found it very “lonely” at the start of my work from home experience. I was not sure about protocol, when can you reach out to work colleagues, how early is too early, or too late in the day. So speak to your work mates, set up a routine to have a short on-line meet as often as possible. Agree to all use one of many Video-Conferencing solution that are out there. Use the one you are most comfortable with.
- Here is the pickle in the ice cream. You have got to work at least as productive as if you were in the office. It seams easy in the beginning, but as time moves on, there are many distraction waiting to grab your attention. Set up a routine where yo give yourself breaks, lunch time etc. Plan your day starting with setting an achievable goal, what must you complete today. but dont worry, if you miss your goal, don’t worry, there is always overtime.
- You are going to have to call in the troops and explain the new routine to them. Be prepared for a few interruptions during your ZOOM meetings from kids and bored pets. Explain to younger children why you are working from home, and how they can support your new routine. Make them feel part of the solution.
- Use you time well. I start my day at the same time every day. The time that I would have gotten into the car and started my hour and a half journey to the office, and end my day half an hour earlier that I usually would have. This in effect give me at least an extra 30 minutes of productive time every day. I find my best work is done the earlier I start.
- You are going to need a lot of self discipline: Working from your home office, I find that it’s easy to become your own worst enemy. Because when you’re not surrounded by coworkers (who constantly interrupt your work), you’re free to drop those inhibitions. At home, mostly, 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.)
- Get your set up right. If you are lucky, your employer may have made a contribution towards setting up your home office. You will need to have enough space for a decent size desk, space for a monitor as well as other equipment and a good quality chair. We offer a wide range of comfortable and functional home office furniture. Try to make your space as comfortable as possible. If you need help, reach out to a professional that can help set up your ideal home office.
- Maintain your mental well being. There are time I feel I am losing my mind. Could be too many distraction on a specific day, lack of contact with peers, there are a plethora of things out there to bend your brain during these tough times. When you need it, take a break. Go and sit in the garden and take a breather. Bake a cake, do something that will stimulator your mind.
- Don’t overdo it either, it is easy to get so involved in a specific task that you end up working past your usual time. This is not fair on you, or your family. Think about it from their perspective. They have seen you for most of the day, but have not been able to really connect, or convers with you. Be disciplined, when its time to knock off, blow the whistle and pack it up. Working too much leads to burnout and wrecks your productivity. “Making up time” later just extends your working hours and cuts into recuperation time.
- If you and your spouse are both working from home, its best to set up a roster of who does what when. More than likely you may have your kids at home. They need to eat, be cleaned and possibly entertained. So you may need to split these tasks so that you both have enough time to get your work done.
Lastly, my advice for Top Tips for Working from Home is to make the most of this opportunity whilst you can. You may be fortunate enough to return to work full time in the future, and you will want t look back and have had a great time.