Many people are working from home for the first time because of COVID-19. Others are more seasoned remote workers. Whatever your circumstances, working from home is likely playing a larger part in your life, or that of people you live with, than it ever has before. At its best, working from home benefits everyone: you, your family or household, and your organization. Remain connected and positive, and you can work productively while maintaining a fulfilling home life – all without the stress of a daily commute.
- Stick with Your Routine.
Just because you’re not commuting and going into an office doesn’t mean you should skip your weekday morning preparations. Wake up at your normal time, shower, and get dressed in real clothes (not pajamas!). It may sound trivial, but this helps you mentally prepare for the day ahead and get into the “I’m going to work” mindset.
It’s also helpful to keep a set schedule. If you typical work nine-to-five hours, keep doing it at home. It’s easy to lose track of time and if you can’t stick to a typical work-life balance, you may find yourself getting easily burnt out.
- Build a Permanent Work Space
The first step in your “work from home” journey is to designate an area of your home, specifically for getting work done. This could be an empty or spare bedroom that you convert to a home office. If you are pressed for space, you can set up a desk for your computer and office supplies. Regardless of space or location, establish an area of your home where you will work, and commit to working in this space every day. Be sure your workspace is quiet so you can focus on the task at hand.
- Allocate Strict Working from Home Hours
In India the biggest of challenges in improving your work from home productivity is allocating work hours. So the next step in maintaining productivity is to strictly set apart work hours with specific breaks in between.
Allocating work hours would help you make sure that the work at hand is being delivered regularly, productively and always quality centric.
- Use Phone Apps
If your job involves making long distance and/or international calls, Google Hangouts, WhatsApp, and Skype all let you call over the Internet across the globe on the cheap. And if you and the person you’re calling are on the same service, the call will be free.
- Maintain Open Lines of Communication
Keeping open lines of communication is a great way to improve communication and build trust between managers and their remote employees. By increasing the bond between workers and their employers, employees become more engaged with their jobs. Knowing they can easily reach their boss, ask questions and make complaints will make them feel they’re part of the company and that their contributions matter.
- Take Short Breaks
Apart from the usual lunch break, schedule short breaks throughout the day. Sitting for longer periods tends to kill your productivity. Sitting continuously in a single position may lead to serious health problems in the long run.
Also, several researchers have concluded that short breaks help you to unlock new creativity levels. While on a short break you can take a walk, meditate, exercise, or take a power nap.
- Minimize Interruptions
Working remotely comes with a unique set of potential distractions and interruptions. Whether it’s your child calling your name, the mailman ringing the doorbell, or your phone chiming with a text, it’s all too easy to give in to these interruptions instead of focusing on the task at hand.
Minimize these disruptions by silencing your phone, getting some noise-canceling headphones, and keeping your kids and/or pets busy with a new game or toy. This is also where it comes in handy to have a designated workspace.
Communicate to your family or roommates that when you’re “at work,” you need to focus on work, and you can talk to them when you’re done.
- Get Some Exercise
It is also important to plan some exercise into your day. You’re no longer walking from the train station or car to your office or popping out at lunch for a walk to the local sandwich shop, but unless you want to turn into a couch potato, it is important to squeeze in some exercise. Whether this is some stretches during your break, getting on a stationary bike, or just heading out for a walk, exercise is crucial for your health and productivity. Encourage your employees to take break and to squeeze in some physical activity in those break times or before or after work.
Our 8 steps of guideline can help you and your workers to become more productive. Although you’ll both need to think about the optimal work environment and how to handle tasks, once you get down to working, you should find that you get more done and have less stress with your new flexible schedule.