The outbreak of the dreaded coronavirus has fractured many verticals of operation.
The rate at which this virus spreads has made countries take decisions of curfew and lockdown. The total number of recorded cases, as tracked by Worldometers, has surpassed 2,70,000 as of 20th March 2020. The pandemic has already taken 11,000 + lives and is showing no signs of slowing down.
Multinational companies like Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Chevron, etc., have taken prompt decisions for their employees. From the United Kingdom to the United States, Japan to South Korea, all of these companies have introduced compulsory work-from-home programs in recent weeks in lieu of COVID-19 spread.
Companies have tried to inculcate the work-from-home culture, and the employees have responded sincerely. The question of how to work during coronavirus has been answered well by the employees by showing incremental results, albeit, working remotely.
Work-from-home implies that you no longer have the amenities of your office culture, your dedicated workstation, the daily team meetings, and a lot more. However, most of these aspects are coverable and just require an honest effort from the workers.
Let’s run through 6 of the best tips that’ll show you how to stay productive during coronavirus.
When you operate from your premises, you can easily get lenient with deadlines. This hinders the daily growth metrics, and you form an opinion that you don’t fit into the work-from-home culture.
The solution to this problem is simple. Formulate a daily work-routine, fill it in your reminder app, and follow that with utter sincerity. Free tools like EfficientReminder and 2day can be used for the same. From the time you wake up to the moment you start working your assignment, keep everything under time-frame, and don’t violate them.
When you strictly follow the routine, you become more productive because now you’re also saving the travel time. Within a few days, you deliver the results with greater efficiency, and you also lift the morale of the whole team.
Once you are able to follow your work-routine, you stay productive with your work. However, working-from-home needs complete employee dedication. This includes isolation from all the non-essential components during the work hours. Learn and implement the Pomodoro Technique to utilize your time in the best way possible and dedicate your working hours for total productivity.
You can start by keeping your phone at bay. The dreaded sound of "ting" consumes precious work hours, and you're not even aware that it's a distraction. Try to work in rooms where you can focus on work, and there's a minimal disturbance.
Also, inform your family members and roommates about your office projects to notify them about your work. This way, you ensure that they only disturb you when it's a real necessity. The tabs that you open while working can also deviate you from work, so narrow down unnecessary clicks.
Set up morning team meetings and be on schedule to report to lay the foundation for a perfect day while working-from-home. Determine the action plan for a limited session, get in touch with the team again to discuss further action plans.
Discuss progress with your team for each session to better understand what needs to be done next. Ask for suggestions and provide a few from your side as well to create a healthy remote-working environment.
Use video calls and conference calls to keep the spirits high, and ensure that there are no communications barriers within the team. Use applications such as Zoom, Toggl, etc., to stay connected with the project members and schedule an end-of-day call to discuss productivity and the next set of actions.
Your family and your company both want you to work from home during the pandemic. However, you can work efficiently only when you also want to do the same. Work with dedication and keep aside everything not related to work so that your focus doesn't deviate.
Create a distance from the surroundings, ensuring that you concentrate only on the project agenda. Develop a virtual workstation at your home that suits your working style and keep everything else aside.
There might be guest visits, something happening in the neighborhood, or a phone call from your best friend, but you have to make sure that you stick to your work routine. This way, you create a virtual wall between your work and the surroundings.
Office operability allows administrators and team leaders to delegate and adjust tasks according to deadlines and goals for the job. In the unavailability of this service, it could be difficult to formulate a time-bound to-do list for certain workers.
Work management tools such as Trello for Slack, Teamwork, Taskworld, and many others can be used to great effect. Tasks are scheduled with preliminary deadlines using these tools, and dedicated tasks for specific time-frames can be easily allotted to the workers.
Measure all the effort that you put in while working-from-home or from office. COVID-19 and news related to it will surely kill some time. But make sure that these breaks are used productively, and you can even call your project members to discuss the work progress.
Timely work analysis gives you the exact areas for improvement. You clearly know where you are nailing the work and also the areas where you need to improve. In the end, it's a fight against the COVID-19 disease, and don't question yourself twice for putting your health at priority.
Amidst the outbreak of coronavirus, it's a responsible act by the workers to understand how to work during a pandemic. To stay productive while working from home, start work on time, and follow a strict work routine.
Take care of all the distractions that come in the way of your work, and stay connected with your team members and project leaders. Isolate yourself from the surroundings to ensure that you don't deviate from your productive work hours.
Use work management tools to keep track of your daily tasks and project deadlines. Measure the work that you're doing and the time that is investing in doing so. Discuss them with the team to learn and grow on a daily basis.
Lastly, stay safe and hygienic. Keep your surroundings clean, and in case you fall ill, prioritize your health.
What ways can you think of to stay productive during the pandemic?
Anuja is the Co-founder and CEO of RedAlkemi Online Pvt. Ltd., a digital marketing agency helping clients with their end to end online presence. Anuja has 30 years of work experience as a successful entrepreneur and has co-founded several ventures since 1986. She and her team are passionate about helping SMEs achieve measurable online success for their business. Anuja holds a Bachelors degree in Advertising from the Government College of Fine Arts, Chandigarh, India.