It is no longer news when people talk about the coronavirus aka COVID-19. I will spare you all the information I have on the virus and jump right into talking about working from home. For those of you who follow the Career Savage Instagram page, you know already that I have been working from home for the past 10 months due to the nature of my professional career.
For many of you working from home is new. You might be asking yourself, how do I manage doing this with kids in the house? How do I stay on track and limit my distractions? When do I start working and when do I stop? How does this all work? Working from home sounds AMAZING, until you are actually working from home and the clock strikes 5 pm and you realize you have only responded to one email. It can either kill or improve your productivity if not careful. Well per usual, I am here to give you a few tips to ensure your productivity is on par.
1) Set Your Daily Schedule the Night Before
DO NOT leave your schedule up to chance. Leaving your daily routine to figure out in the morning is a recipe for being unproductive. You should map out all of your meetings and tasks and fit them into 30 to 60 minute time slots. For example, If you need to complete the drafting of the document, put it in your schedule to be completed from 9am to 1130am. That way you know between that time you are working on your draft.
2) Put Your Phone and all Non-work electronics on DND
For some reason when you are working from home and people in your life know you work from home they call and text you more frequently. Due to the increased frequency you feel the need to answer. DON'T, unless it is an emergency of course. The constant buzzing and ringing of your phone is nothing more than a distraction.
3) Walk Around for 15 Minutes After Completing a Task
After you have drafted your document, get up and stretch. Walk around your house or in your backyard. Do 15 minutes of Yoga. Whatever gets your body moving. If you want you can even call your friends and family back but make sure you are keeping it to the 15 minutes and no more. Walk around your kitchen or living room while making that call. When you work in an office you walk to get tea or to your colleagues desk. You socialize. You move around in general. You need to find a way to mimic that environment.
4) Maintain a Connection With Colleagues
It is so important that you maintain your work relationships, virtually. This can mean engaging in meetings you normally didn't pay attention to before and meeting with people you may have deemed non-essential to your work practice.
5) Remember to Eat
When you work from home time flies beyond belief so it is important you actually take a lunch break.
6) Tasks Done Job Done.
Some managers and directors out there may not like what I am about to say but as long as you have completed your work, your job is done. Meaning, you may realize what takes a "Full 8 Hour Work Day" may only take you a 5 hour working from home day. Why? In the office you have to walk over to buildings where your meetings are held. You have nonchalant chats every half hour or so with your colleagues. There are office events you must attend and so on and so forth. I use to finish my work in 4 hours and actually look and ask for more to do because I felt I wasn't doing enough. In reality I was doing the same amount of work I did in the office, just quicker!
7) Set Up your Work Space
Don't work from your couch or your bed. Those are both places you could easily fall asleep. Even as someone who is experienced in working from home, I avoid my bed at all costs. Work from your Island or dining table. If you or your kids have a desk, work from there!
8) Keep Your Kids Occupied
I know this is easier said than done. One thing that helps is hiring an in house babysitter or setting up school in your home for your kids. This way your kids are on a routine as well.
There are so many other tips that can be offered but I think this is a great start for you all! Make sure you comment your thoughts. What are you doing to help your working from home transition?