Under the current circumstances many employees are choosing, or being asked, to work remotely rather than venturing into the work environment as circumstances continue to evolve.
Working remotely can sometimes feel disruptive and unfamiliar due to a change in surroundings – so we have compiled some top tips to stay productive whilst working from home.
Find your work space
Some people think that working from home means lounging on the sofa with the TV on and little focus being dedicated to the tasks at hand. Working like this is extremely unproductive as well as unhealthy in the long-term.
It is important if you are working remotely that you have a home office or suitable desk space dedicated to working competently, with diminished surrounding distractions.
This will not only help you concentrate but will also allow you to leave your dedicated work area alone and disconnect once your working day is over.
When working from home it is easy to lose routine and fall into being physically lazy, which can affect your way of working and productivity.
A good idea is to start the day as you would if you were leaving the house. For example you may find it useful to get ready as normal, eat breakfast and go for a walk to get prepped for the day ahead and enhance the feeling of being prepared.
Make sure you stay connected with your team
Working alongside your peers profitably is one of the keys to working productively.
In an office environment you are naturally encouraged to form relationships with colleagues by spending breaks together and exchanging weekend plans. This regular interaction consequently makes working together easier as trust is high.
On the other hand, working away from the office makes it hard to form relationships and continue an office community. This can cause obstacles when working back with the team. This is because they may no longer feel obliged to stay loyal to you, and asking them for work favors can feel more awkward without much-needed personal connection.
When working from home it is important to stay proactive, and to not be scared to ask for help or share information with your team. This regular interaction is vital to maintaining good working relationships.
If you work a considerable distance away and cannot make regular visits, then connecting often with your team face-to-face (via video) is an alternative suggestion. Studies have proven that seeing someone and their body language helps you understand them, and therefore work better together.
Provide regular updates
When working from home trust issues can materialize between you, your team and your managers.
To overcome this, you should always proactively keep them up-to-date. For example, sending your daily schedule at the start of the day and what you have accomplished at the end of the day will fulfill this. It will give your team and superiors confidence that you are contributing effectively .
Remember that it is important to communicate the good and the bad, so that they are kept in the loop with all aspects of your work.
To add to this, making yourself accessible (by always answering the phone when you can) and replying to messages promptly will avoid misunderstandings arising. Inform your team if you are busy or in a meeting to avoid being contacted at difficult times.
Take accountability for your work and push yourself
Finally, work for yourself and not for others. This will help you feel proud of your work and push yourself to achieve the goals you have been set. Another useful tip is to write a daily schedule to ensure that all tasks are completed by the end of the day.
If working remotely is important to you, make sure you are able to find a company that will respect this.