The COVID-19 pandemic has created a lot of chaos around the world. Public gatherings have been restricted and public places have been sealed. Offices around the world have also been ordered to close down, in order to minimize social interaction. This has created a global shift from working in office spaces to working from home. Remote working has several benefits, as well as drawbacks. In order to ensure you are working from home the right way, this article highlights some DO’s and DON’Ts you really need to know.
1. DO confine your workspace to a specific area, but DON’T make it an island
The first thing to do in order to efficiently work from home is to decide a specific workspace. Ensure you choose a quiet and comfortable area in your house, free of distractions. It is best to use a proper table and chair, in order to maintain the right posture. Focus on optimum lighting and aesthetics. Keep your workspace clutter-free, neat and well organized at all times. Keep essential stationery, a water bottle, important files and a notepad handy. You can also paste motivational quotes on the wall and keep a flower pot on your desk for that extra visual appeal.
A dedicated workspace and a proper workstation help you remain focused and away from distractions, but do not sit in one place the whole day. You don’t have to statue in front of a screen or write notes the whole time. You can always roam around, go to the balcony to get some fresh air, peak from the window nearby, or sit on the dining table during lunch breaks. Productive working hours are supposed to be spent on your desk, while you can occasionally move away during break times.
2. DO set actionable targets & DON’T miss out on any deadlines
Productivity is all about setting the right goals and devising strategies to effectively achieve them. Actionable and measurable targets need to be set, so you know where you want to reach and decide on a road map accordingly. You can use Week Plan to help you remain on track, with its OKR (Objectives and Key Result) approach. It will help define your goals, break them down into specific objectives, and decide daily, weekly and monthly tasks. This approach will help you remain proactive, complete tasks before due dates, and keep track of your progress. Week Plan will also help you remain organized, maintain a proper schedule, and ensure all tasks are completed within the set timelines.
3. DO ensure productivity, but DON’T disturb your work-life balance
Work smart, not more! Ensuring productivity and efficiency while working from home is a major objective by most people. A common misconception, however, is that working longer hours will lead to brighter results. In order to achieve targets and become successful, you need to find the right way of doing things. Work processes need to be evaluated and streamlined. Any tasks that consume time and energy but not lead to results should be eliminated. More time should be dedicated to major tasks that drive relevant results and administrative or supporting tasks should be kept on low priority.
A great challenge faced by people working from home is that they spend much more time doing office related work than they used to before they started working remotely. They struggle to spend quality time with their friends and family. You should always maintain a work-life balance, allocating meaningful time for work, loved ones, and for yourselves. Follow a fitness regimen, take out time for a good workout, and remain physically active. It is important to unwind and replenish your energy levels, so you can work more productively and not become irritated or exhausted.
4. DO interact with relevant stakeholders & DON’T work in silos
The rapid spread of Coronavirus has created a situation of panic for many people. During tough times, we should check up on each other and know how our stakeholders are doing. Team building activities must continue and active participation from relevant groups should be encouraged at all times. Being physically present with each other in an office environment or working from separate locations, team spirit should always remain high. Working in silos is not recommended and keeping team members updated with objectives, tasks and related progress has lasting benefits. For efficient brainstorming, idea generation, and smooth execution, do not forget to regularly interact with your colleagues. Holding weekly team meetings, taking updates, helping each other out, and providing support, are points not to be missed while working from home.
Press releases, newsletters, social media posts, and personalized email campaigns can be used to build, maintain, and strengthen a positive relationship with all stakeholders. Relevant information, such as preventative guidelines for COVID-19, company goals, major tasks being executed, progress reports, and milestone achievements should be shared as and when necessary. Working remotely should not affect the quality of communication, with internal or external stakeholders. Working independently and having a silo mentality does not drive the best results. For the steady growth of any company, collaboration is always advised.
5. DO take care of your health and well-being & DON’T overwork yourself
Working from home, many people tend to exhaust themselves. Working too hard, too much or too long is bad for your physical and mental health. Don’t overwork yourself, decide working hours, and stick to them. You’re not supposed to be online 24/7. If a task is not urgent and its deadline is not around the corner, you can do it later. In order to avoid excessive stress and procrastination while working from home, you can use Week Plan to stay organized. Week Plan will help you define high impact tasks, schedule activities, segment tasks by role or area of responsibility, track your time, avoid duplication of work and much more. This way, you can utilize your time more efficiently and save energy.
Working from home, you have the extra opportunity to focus on your well-being. Take care of your diet, drink plenty of water, sleep the required 8 hours, give your body some rest, have peace of mind, do yoga and meditate in your garden. When you feel tired, step out to get some fresh air, sip some lemonade, watch a TED talk, or read a page from your favorite comic book.
In order to make the most out of your work from home routine, follow the TO-DO’s mentioned above and avoid the NOT TO-DO’s. Stay safe, stay organized, and stay productive. If you found this blog interesting or have any more points to add to the list, feel free to mention them in the comments below!
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