Working from home isn’t an alien concept – most of us who rely on PCs and devices to perform our tasks do it either on the odd occasion or as a regular part of our working week.
What many of us aren’t used to is prolonged remote working; away from our usual environment, routines and teams. Depending on our personal situations, we’re suddenly finding ourselves either dealing with months of isolation, or crammed into various rooms around our homes while other family members also try to work or study. Add to that potential issues with connectivity and various distractions and it’s little wonder that working from home can feel like a challenge in itself.
But 44’s tips for working from home will help give you the structure and support to work from home more effectively:
- Dress for success: While the prospect of living in your pyjamas may appeal, getting dressed for a day in the ‘office’ – even when you’re working from home – is a great way to prepare for the day ahead. Plus, changing back into civilian clothes will help you draw a formal end when your working day is over too.
- Out of bounds: Don’t be tempted to throw your body clock out by changing your sleep patterns. Go to bed and get up at the normal time – and it’s a good idea to stick to your normal hours even when working from home.
- Dedicated workspace: With the kids off school and other family members working from home as well, space might be at a premium. But if you can, create an office in a separate part of your home where you can have a dedicated workspace. Get the children together and agree times when you will be free to spend time with them. Since this is the real world, be prepared to scrap that advice at times and do your working from home at night when they are in bed!
- Love your list: Write a list of what you need to achieve by the end of each day and week. That will stop you getting distracted when working from home, and keep you on track with your workload.
Staying productive when working from home
- Take regular breaks: Productivity drops when you are tired and less motivated. Remember to take your regular five-minute screen breaks throughout the day and move around and stretch. Working from home might also help you keep on top of domestic chores. Kill two birds with one stone and develop a workout around loading up the dishwasher or hanging out the washing.
- Get some fresh air: Staying indoors all day isn’t a good idea when working from home. It’s not healthy, and it’s a sure-fire way to go stir crazy. Get some fresh air at least once a day. Wandering round the garden or walking round the block will clear your mind, although you should follow the Government’s guide on social distancing.
- Phone a friend: While working from home alone can be brilliantly productive, it’s always good to talk so be sure to pick up the phone and have a conversation with a colleague or friend at least once during the day.
- Set up properly: If possible make sure you have a properly adjusted desk and chair so you can use the keyboard safely and support your posture. Make sure your seat is good enough for working from home.
- Be cool about the noise: Dogs bark, kids cry. Lots of us are working from home but we all have lives too. Make people comfortable with this – and be comfortable with it yourself.
- For more tips: The BBC has published some great tips for working from home in the form of a compilation of its published content.
If you’d like to find out more, we’d love to hear from you.