Tips to Be More Productive When Working from Home

woman working on computer
by Rae Steinbach

As companies begin to modernize and keep up to date with HR trends, so do the environments they choose to work in.

Home offices were once a rarity, but the ubiquity of computers, smartphones, and telecommuting solutions has made it easier for employees in many industries to work from home.

Studies show that more people are taking the opportunity to work from the comfort of their own home than ever before. While there are many benefits to this option, not everyone is guaranteed to thrive in this type of space. If you find this is the case, you may have trouble being as productive in a home office as you are at a company office.

As for employers who have never managed a remote worker, they may feel in the dark when it comes to their employees’ output. Putting a communication plan in place will help ease their mind and ensure the needs of both you and your manager are being clearly communicated to one another. Devising a successful communication plan should include having consistent performance evaluations, more than just once per year. This allows managers to keep up-to-date with their employee’s progress and promotes maximum efficiency.

As a remote team member, these tips will help you maximize your efficiency and accomplish just as much (maybe even more) during your workday.

Invest in Your Workspace

What is or isn’t important to you in a home office is a matter of personal preference, but there are a few things you’ll want to consider if you’re planning to work from home. A high-quality computer that can handle your responsibilities is crucial, and a supportive desk chair when you’re working long hours will save your back.

Not one to sit in one place? Many telecommuters prefer not to have an office space at all, and choose instead to move around their homes throughout the day. This option may be best for those with a travel bug and prefer to work on-the-go. Opting to not have a desk or other office furnishings can help you save money to invest in the tools that are most important to your productivity and lifestyle.

Stick to a Schedule

Not everyone is at their most productive at the same time everyday, so being able to set your own hours is one of the top benefits of working from home. But this doesn’t mean “work when you want.” Sticking to a routine will help you become more productive and make each workday more predictable. One way to accomplish this is by making a to-do list at the beginning of each day to prioritize your tasks.

It may sound counterintuitive, but one of the best ways to improve your productivity is by taking regular short breaks. Even allowing yourself a few minutes to regroup can be enough to help you focus and produce your best work.

Do Not Disturb

Managing your business and personal life in the same space can run a risk of conflating the two. Even if they aren’t physically divided, keeping business and pleasure separate is critical to maintaining a high level of productivity as well as ensuring that you give yourself sufficient time to unwind.

Rather than leaving your notifications on throughout the day, put your phone and computer on ‘Do Not Disturb’ and only check them between tasks or on a break. This will make it much easier to focus on work while avoiding as many distractions as possible. This also trains people that you aren’t available right away, and you will eventually develop a cadence of communication that allows for sustained focused work.

Working from home can be a great opportunity, but requires an effort from both you and your manager to find a regimen that fits. Employees, no matter where your office space is, be honest in the work you produce. Continue to build trust with your employer and they will certainly see your flexibility as a huge resource to the company. These tips will help make your work days more productive and create a more efficient schedule that fits everyone’s unique needs.

About the Author: Rae is a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing, of course.

Twitter handle: @araesininthesun

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

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