If you’re one of the many people globally that has found themselves working from home in recent months, then you’ll also be aware that working from home can be very, very difficult.
There are any number of potentially productivity-destroying distractions around the home, from children and pets right through to the allure of the living room sofa just when you need to push on and get a challenging project done. If left unmanaged, these distractions can significantly affect your output.
The good news is that there is plenty that can be done to ensure that working from home can work for you, and potentially become a permanent lifestyle change for you, even as office environments open back up again. You may not know it, but there are even certain discounts you can get on car insurance when working from home.
Create a Dedicated Workspace
It’s no good to be working off the couch, at the dining table, or on the balcony table. As relaxing as these environments might be, the merging of the work and home environment can lead to distractions and discomfort with the lack of boundaries.
Even if you can’t dedicate an entire room to be a home office, at the least you should create a dedicated workspace that the rest of the household understands is dedicated exclusively to work.
Work on a Schedule
Studies show that people tend to work longer hours when working from home, with work stretching into the evenings and, at times, late at night. Setting up an expectation with your co-workers and clients that you’re available at all times is not productive and can lead to exhaustion and burnout, so be sure to clearly define the hours that you’ll be working.
Consider using an online calendar that can be shared so people know when you’re available. Having a specific schedule for your working hours will help you maintain your mental health as a remote worker, and it will help your co-workers and clients to not interfere with your personal life.
Have Good Internet Speeds
Modern work involves the Internet, and working from home means video conferencing, cloud services, and lots of files being shared online. Most professionals can access a residential Internet service sufficient to make use of the full gamut of Internet services and features they need to work productively.
In some cases, your home office environment might need tweaking to access the full capabilities of the Internet, but in most cases, people will be able to access Internet speeds adequate for their work from anywhere.
Keep Regular Contact
It’s a good idea to organize a morning conference call with the team each morning to catch up and plan the day ahead. This has dual benefits. First, it makes sure that the entire team is working productively, and helps remind each person that they are part of a team and organization.
This is a guest post by Luke Fitzpatrick.