10 tips for a productive day working from Home
1. Create a workspace away from where you sleep
Designate a workspace in your home or at a coffee shop to help you get in the “right mindset” to get work done. Avoid your bedroom, especially working in bed, to minimize the temptation to fall asleep. This also helps for good sleep at night, since you won’t associate your bed with work.
2. Stick to your regular routine as much as possible
Though the scenery is different, your routine shouldn’t be. Maintaining a sense of structure prevents you from taking longer on tasks than it usually would. If you typically take time at the beginning of the work day to plan out your tasks, do that at home, too. For example, if you typically take lunch at 12:30pm, stick to it. This assists in keeping you focused, and where it typically would be at work.
3. Continue Socializing During Social Distancing
If needed, find a “work from homie” to keep you company. Unless you’ve been exposed, it is important to not isolate yourself completely. If you don’t have a buddy to work from home with, rely on FaceTime and phone calls with loved ones to keep your spirits high and help you feel connected.
4. Keep Your Day 9-5
When working from home it may be tempting to work more than your allotted hours for the day. It’s easy to justify skipping lunch or working until 5:30 since that’s usually the time you would spend commuting to work. The issue is you run the risk of burning out.
5. Reduce Distractions
When working from home, one of the biggest obstacles to overcome is most likely distractions. To help you stay efficient during this time, we recommend you find a designated workspace free of distractions. Although your boss isn’t there to look over your shoulder, you should still avoid picking up your phone for quick scrolls through social media. Studies suggest it takes 23 minutes to refocus once we engage in small distractions such as checking social media or responding to a text. Similarly, we recommend you cut out other background distractions such as TV.
6. Don’t See This As An Opportunity to Sleep In
It may be easy to view this as an opportunity to sleep in and wait until the last minute to get out of bed. This may hinder your work performance. We suggest giving yourself time to wake up, get ready, eat breakfast, drink your morning cup of coffee, and mentally prepare for your day just like you’re going into the office.
7. Get Dressed for the day – Don’t hang out in your pajamas
Working from home can tempt you to stay in the clothes you slept in, but this impacts your productivity. Get ready like you would normally for work.
8. Over Communicate
Probably the most important tip we will share is to practice over communication. Your company is counting on you to complete your job and you are likely depending on others to answer your questions, send you files, return your emails. Some of our favorite methods and platforms for this here at GreenFox are:
- Zoom, Skype, and Google Hangouts for video conferencing
- Whatever you do, make sure you are accessible to your coworkers at all times. Keep your phone nearby, check your email regularly, and respond immediately.
- Schedule a morning phone call with your team to debrief everyone’s tasks for the day and celebrate accomplishments from the previous workday. This will also assist in keeping each other accountable while working from home and will ensure everyone feels connected.
- Task management platforms such as Asana can help keep track of everyone’s workload. Message apps like Slack and GroupMe aid in instant communication.
9. Create a To-Don’t List
While working from home, you may see a pile of laundry to fold or a stack of dishes in the sink to wash. Create a list of non-work related tasks that you won’t let yourself complete during your normal scheduled 9-5.
10. Tips For the Parents Working From Home
Working from home can be a challenge for anyone, but working from home when children are present can pose a new challenge. Create a habit of checking on your children between each work task. Spend the time you would usually spend catching up with coworkers spending quality time with your kids and making sure they have everything they need.
We hope these tips help you maintain some normalcy during COVID-19. To sustain a level of work efficiency, it is helpful to not treat your time spent working from home as a vacation. GreenFox wishes you all the best during this time!