How To Productively Work From Home
With the world as we know it turned upside down in the matter of a few short weeks due to COVID-19 (it only took me a few words before i mentioned it), then the way we work and communicate has to be realigned to not only cope with the current pandemic, but enable us to adjust easier to this scenario, should it happen again. This could also be something to look at implementing within business cultures on a regular basis (once this Armageddon is eventually over) that had never thought of having it in place before
Done right, working from home can increase productivity and aid staff retention!
It can help re-energise, break up ‘the work, sleep, work, repeat, feeling’ and aid that work-life balance that so many of the candidates that I interview crave. The reason I’m interviewing them? They’re looking to leave their current business because they feel they don’t have the right balance, so in turn this idea could certainly aid retention of staff within your workplace
With most businesses currently adapting to working from home over the next few weeks or months (we still have no idea how long!) and business leaders now having to realign their thought process towards remote working. Here’s a few key tips and processes that I have found worked for both myself and my colleagues to ensure maximum productivity when working from home
● Choose A Dedicated Work Space
In your dressing gown, breakfast in bed, Netflix on in the background, a facebook newsfeed to browse through and the family pet running around. This is great for a Sunday morning but to work efficiently you must create a ‘work only’ area. Ensure you have a comfortable working area, effective WIFI and ensure you have adequate phone signal. There always seems to be that one spot in the house where it goes sketchy, is it just me??!! This will give you focus in your work, and ensure the rest of the household knows that when you’re in your space you’ve created it’s ‘work time’ and will stop any other distractions from anyone else.
● Set Your Daily Goals
As cliche as it sounds, failing to prepare is preparing to fail! As with all parts of business, there has to be a plan. Have a daily S.M.A.R.T plan set out. Communicating what your daily plans in video calls with the team helps and gives accountability. Have a to-do list in your diary and set goals to achieve by the end of the day or by lunchtime, it certainly gives you a sense of achievement
Communication is key. We live in a world full of great technology. With tools like google hangouts, Slack, Zoom, Skype, facetime and even a whatsapp video call. These all ensure we have the tools today to communicate as personable as possible with others. Make set team meeting times each day, to set you up for the day and ensure accountability for managing goals for the day. Make it not all about work and inject a bit of fun into them (a lunchtime quiz always goes down well and in our office it gets very competitive). When communicating on a 1-1 basis, always try and make it a video call. You can gauge a lot from body language, facial expressions and it can always be a good talking point when you’ve still got that horrific painting up on the wall in the background!
● Healthy Body, Healthy Mind
Act as if you’re going to work.. Human beings are creatures of routine, so have your normal routine you would when heading to the office for work. Showered, dressed as if going to work, breakfast and morning coffee (or 5 if you’re anything like our team) helps get you focussed for the day.
You have to keep moving! Some sort of exercise is crucial for the mind and body. Whether it’s a 20 minute walk, a full on 5k run, or even cleaning the car. Regular breaks from your workspace are crucial and set some time aside to do at least one activity for the day. It will help clear the mind, stave off the lethargic or isolated feelings, keep you focussed, and will stop you piling on those pounds. (especially if you like a beer at the end of the day)
Eat and drink cleani(ish)- There’s no doubt that you’ll start hearing the fridge calling (Even more so if your workspace is in the kitchen). This gives you the opportunity to make/prepare your own meals, which can be good and bad. Try and eat as well as possible, drink plenty of water and try and avoid snacking on anything other than fruit. Of course, always have those rewards in the shape of a treat or much deserved glass of wine at the end of the day, things would simply be boring otherwise!
● Embrace it
Companies will now have a more open mind set over working from home options following this pandemic. If remote working options are implemented within your workplace, and especially during the current situation, then you must embrace it.
It opens up a lot of opportunities to do things you wouldn’t normally have the chance or time to do. Being able to pick up the kids from school, spending time with the people important to you
that you would only see at the weekends and a couple of hours a night. Start that hobby, learn that new skill and as long as you focus the hard work in short bursts then this can have a positive impact on your work-life balance moving forward!BACK