Work from home has been utilized by many companies around the world for years. During the current coronavirus outbreak, millions of people were introduced to it for the first time to explore its advantages and challenges.
People who are newly introduced to working from home, who may include you, can normally face challenges. From productivity and communication to using new tools, the saved time and effort of transportation come with challenges that people face at home and when managing their time on their own.
Fortunately, there were millions of people who were working from home previously. These include full-time and part-time remote employees or freelancers. We can learn from their experiences in the following tips.
Commiting to regular working hours is one of the best practices to do. This can boost your productivity. Sticking to a schedule will help you follow a better routine for everyday and enjoy your time away from work.
The lack of routine outside your office can be a big challenge that you would want to overcome. So, keeping a work schedule and predetermined work hours is a great thing to consider.
One of the very first priorities when you start to work from home should be making your own dedicated workspace. Don't just work anywhere in the house.
Choose a room or part of a room that you will use for work consistently. Start to organise it to make it a better place for work.
Even if your workspace doesn't have very specific features, the concept itself of having a place for work can help you focus and be more productive.
Communication changes when you work from home. The communication of remote work doesn't convey the same emotions and vibe of the office. However, you can still manage to make it efficient.
Emails can be formal and efficient way of communication. However, you can consider other text messaging, voice and video calls and conferencing applications to help you.
Examples of such applications are WhatsApp, Skype, Facetime, Google Hangout and for sure Zoom.
You should always be professional and clear while communicating. You should not hesitate to communicate because less communication can decrease your efficiency. You also need to manage your contacts to reach everyone efficiently.
Making a to-do list can help you keep focused on what you need to complete. It also helps you manage your priorities. Every time you start working, you will know where to start from your to-do list.
For this, you can use one of the available tools on PCs and smartphones. There are many project management and task management apps that offer great experiences like Trello and Slack. You can try them out.
Beside having a to-do list, you need to assign a deadline for every task. Deadlines help you keep focused if you aren't already having deadlines set by a manager.
Deadlines also keep you motivated. They help you fight distractions that make you feel overwhelmed and unable to determine priorities.
Sitting at home can make you try to multitask all day by doing something for your home while working. Doing two activities at the same time can distract you. It can easily affect your productivity.
Beside distraction, your work quality can also get affected with multitasking. So, what you need to do if you feel this is happening is to keep focused on one task at a time and avoid doing housework while working.
A break is essential to stay productive and motivated during remote work. Take a break from time to time or set a pattern for breaks to keep your head refreshed and ideas flowing.
A break doesn't mean distracting yourself with social media feeds or anything like that. You can just recharge your energy by going to the window, taking a short walk, or having a snack.
You can also take a longer 30-minute break to enjoy a longer walk or watch an episode from your favorite show. But you shouldn't have many long breaks throughout the workday.
If your work involves coming up with ideas, relax and give yourself room for inspiration. Don't push things too hard when you work from home.
If you are an employee, an entrepreneur, or a freelancer, you should have limits for your workday. Finish your work at its scheduled time to enjoy the rest of the day.
Pushing tasks can make you work all day. You push them first to after lunch then it is after dinner then it is tomorrow. You should know what you can do today and finish it on time.
This will help you become more productive and avoid working after working hours to enjoy the rest of the day. It also helps you avoid being stuck with deadlines, which can make you more anxious.
Home can be the best place for delicious heavy meals. You shouldn't have heavy meals during your workday. This is because heavy meals can make you feel tired and sleepy.
Keep your food healthy and light when you work from home, at least during working hours. You can leave the heavy food for the rest of the day when you are free to enjoy your time after work.