Shifts in technology, work requirements, lifestyle and the upsurge of globalization have fundamentally changed how and where one works.
With the outbreak of coronavirus, working from home has become the much needed escape. It helps avoid inessential socialization which is much required in the traditional work from the office.
Working from home has become the new black and more popular than ever before. According to a survey by One Gallup around 43% of Americans work from their homes occasionally.
The figures have seen a rise from 39% in the year 2012.
According to Quartz, U.S. Census data 5.2% of U.S. workers completely worked from home in the year 2017 and that is roughly about 8 million people.
This is the situation across the globe and is no surprise that people want to work from home now more than ever, staying in their safe havens while still contributing their best all the more.
While it all sounds like a pink sky working from home during this outbreak and spread of CoronaVirus, but it comes with its unique challenges and here’s how you can work from home while still maintaining efficiency and effectiveness in results and outcomes.
Walking you through quick hacks and techniques to become the master at what has become both the need and luxury of now- “Work from Home.”
Here are 8 Tips to work from home in 2020, while still being productive and effective.
It is very important for one to ‘Feel’ at work even if it’s not physically being in an office space.
Involving Kinesthetics refers to bringing at work all the senses to leverage their connection with the mind and thus conditioning the mind to demonstrate peak performance at work.
It is central to fix work and non-work hours in order to establish a routine, which in turn determines productivity. This also helps maintain regularity at work as well as balance in work and non-work tasks.
Getting dressed up for work also works marvels to keep the mind from wandering around. One should dress up at around the same time every day.
It’s reasonable that one doesn’t dress up like they do when they go out, but dressing up level-headedly helps a lot to keep a sense of routine every day.
Set a workspace inside your home where maintaining hygiene and minimal contact with others is possible in order to avoid spread of the virus. Try to keep it formal & more office-like, with a desk and chair, your essential stationery around.
This is to avoid unnecessary interruption in work and for you to stay focused while working.
It may take a bit of trial and error to figure out what area of your home is most conducive for you to work from. Ideally, it is one where you don’t feel sleepy or get easily distracted.
It is very important to decide the timings of your work, the levels of interaction that you allow with others while you’re working.
You must also check the amount of deviation that you allow yourself, be it in your schedule, targets or work patterns.
Once you draw your boundaries, make sure that you abide by them and at the end of the day reflect back to your achievements or regressions.
For maintaining a healthy approach to work, having good health and a sane mind is all the more important, and thus it is very important to eat suitably and timely.
One should avoid eating at the work-space, however, it is essential to eat foods that boost immunity. Since the cure for coronavirus has still not been found, prevention becomes the best option.
Allocating time for meals and mid-day snacks is crucial to help you check distraction from work.
It is also recommended that one should amble after having meals to bring in new energy and pace at work.
Also maintain a check on your progress, your meal/snack time breaks, and your rest timings so that you don’t end up prolonging or curtailing your me-time.
While working from home, one common problem or challenge that occurs is distractions of various kinds. They range from uninvited conversations with other family members, social media distractions, unanticipated emergencies/non-work-related tasks, etc.
Thus, it is crucial to keep a check on all of these while at work.
Isolating oneself or keeping uncalled-for notifications off helps keep a check and in maintaining work-life balance. However, one should not aloof them so much that it becomes difficult to cope with work- and work-related stress.
One must make sure that everybody in their family (parents, partners, kids) know when and for how long they will work.
Digital has become the new trend, be it in marketing, socializing, building networks or business development.
While working from home, it is important to still be in touch with the community outside.
Social media platforms like LinkedIn, digital event platforms like Meetup and Eventbrite become quite instrumental in helping stay connected with the world outside.
They also help boost the reach and connectivity with like-businesses and people in order to keep work going and aid essential collaborations.
You are accountable for your actions when you’re working from home. You have to set work targets for yourself, plan, execute, achieve and pat your back all by yourself.
Thus, it becomes very crucial to very well define the outcomes that you want to achieve, break them down into enough small, measurable and manageable chunks.
Once, the outcomes have been defined, it is all the more necessary to plan their execution and timely achievement.
As it has been very beautifully quoted by Benjamin Franklin- “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”
Apps like Trello are very useful for proper planning and for keeping checks on work progress.
Working from home requires one to give themselves the necessary boost & appreciation for good work.
It also involves achieving targets and at the same time being a censor. The best censor could be no one but the one who sets the targets.
Thus, one should be their own admirers and critics in order to work efficiently and effectively, and to increase productivity while working from home.
When you work from home, remember that you are your only accountability partners. You need to create a balanced and healthy body, a sane mind, a social circle, and your family all at the same time.
For you to achieve all of this, you should resonate with the office-like ethics and patterns while still enjoying the freedom of no-time and no-space limitations.
It is crucial to understand that there are distractions and unique challenges involved with working from home. But it has exultation and freedom of its own, as you get to completely ‘be yourself’ and still create the maximum value and output if done aptly.
While there is so much havoc and chaos all over the world because of the unruly spread of Coronavirus, work from home is the best resort to take and one should leverage this opportunity to its best.
Wash your hands regularly, use sanitizer, keep writing and stay positive.
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.