Many of us are spending a lot more time at home right now due to the recent Coronavirus Pandemic, including the workdays. When we’d usually be reporting to our desks, we’re finding ourselves on our sofa or at our kitchen tables, trying to complete to-do lists without the built-in discipline of the office.
The expectations are the same or rather more, but the environment is not. And this is not an easy challenge. At the very start, many of us were enjoying the sudden change but that change has become boring now after so many months of working at home. We miss meeting people, gatherings, peer-to-peer communication, etc.
As for now, it looks like things will continue to remain the same for at least in 2020, so it is highly important to stay motivated, disciplined and improve productivity while we work from home in this pandemic. The key to work-from-home success is to create an environment that allows you to focus on the tasks at hand. Whether you are working from home for the first time or just need a quick refresher, here are some tips for creating a functional, but productive work environment at home:
1. Define Your Workspace
The foremost step in pepping up your work from home productivity is to set up a designated workstation. This helps you slide into workflow easily and in maintaining work discipline while at home. Coming up with a workstation is something that adds to your professional demeanour and adds to the productivity substantially. Isolating the work space area also helps isolating from family members.
2. Workspace Hygiene
Whether you work in a home office, kitchen or living room, if there’s “stuff” around that reminds you of your household chores, your eyes will go there and you’ll get distracted. Whenever you work from home, maintain a clutter-free zone. This will help you stay focused on your workload and remain more aligned with an in-office experience. Just setting up a designated work from home desk wouldn’t cover the lengths of productivity. You now have to keep it hygienic enough to maintain healthy work habits. Decluttering is the key to attaining this, simply get rid of all the non-work related articles from around your workstation. And having this done, you are now keeping away from the most of distraction that can hamper your productivity.
3. Wear Your Workday Attire
While it is easy to jump on for work in your pyjamas, you have to set yourself up for success when working from home. Get ready as you would if you were going into the office. Set a morning ritual of getting dressed doing work as you did while going to office to get in the right mindset. You increase your chances of being productive when you set an intention. Remember we are only working from home with the same level of productivity as expected in an office environment.
4. Allocate Strict Working From Home Hours
The biggest of challenges in improving your work from home productivity is allocating work hours. Its easy go past the regular working hours which down the line will lead to reduced productivity. So the next step in maintaining productivity is to set apart work hours with specific breaks in between. For example, In an 8-hour shift, allocate 3 hours, 3 hours and 2 hours with breathers of 10-15 minutes in between, just you would do in an office environment. Allocating work hours would help you make sure that the work at hand is being delivered regularly, productively and always quality centric. Remember, take breathers not vacation.
5. Set Ground Rules For Family Members
It is not possible to follow this all the time and under all circumstances, but whenever possible setting ground rules with people around is the next step in the ladder. Making sure that you are not constantly distracted by the family members can fetch you a good amount of work from home productivity. Simply ask them to maintain the same temperament towards your work as of when you are at a workplace. This will help your transition into a productive working from home option on a longer run.
6. Actionable Remote Working Plan
Coming up with the list of things to be done and ensuring all of which is done is imperative to improve your work from home productivity. Also, make sure that you complete every of the task allocated for a day. Leaving out one of 10 things you had planned for the day is only going to pile up unattended work by the end of the month.
7. Leave Household Chores To Post-Work Hours
It is easy to fall into the trap of taking short breaks in between and complete house hold chores. Over the time, it may result in reduced productivity as you will be tempted go to out more often, sometimes in the name of breaks. Household chores are important, but not when you’re at work. Leaving them for post-work hours is what needs to be done.
8. Stay Fit And Exercise Regularly
When on a consecutively longer work from home regime, taking out time for yourself is strongly recommended . This will help reduce your stress levels and stay focused while working from home. This will also give break from the routine being followed at home. So listen to the music and burn out calories and stay fit.