Who has never dreamed of working from their bed or sofa? Save time on transports, avoid traffic jams, take advantage of this time to devote it to your family or hobbies…
But beware of preconceived ideas about home working. Discover here our 8 good resolutions to take to make remote working your productivity asset.
#1 Start the day by getting dressed
It may seem trivial, but putting on a simple pair of jeans and a t-shirt can help you get into “work mode” and be more productive in your tasks, rather than staying in your pajamas.
“You’re going from home mode to work mode. Plus, if you dress for work, you’ll take yourself more seriously to maintain a workplace attitude. Staying in pajamas and slippers will only motivate you to one thing: go back to bed”, according to WikiHow.
Dressing as if you were going to the office (without putting on a suit) will send a positive signal to your subconscious. This concept is called “embodiment“: the clothes we wear have an impact on the judgment we make about ourselves and influence our behaviour. It can even impact our concentration and efficiency.
#2 Create an inspiring workspace
Working from home may seem like a simple formality, a kind of ” bank holiday ” in your week, the moment when you can work from your sofa with an espresso in your hand… but for all that, these are not good habits to take for your concentration, your productivity and also your health (back pain, stress…).
It is important to delimit your work space with your living space to avoid the boundary between professional and personal life becoming blurred. You must clearly establish a barrier between the two so that you can disconnect at the end of your day without feeling like you are at work having a drink with your friends in your “office sofa”.
Rule n°1 : create an inspiring space
If you hate your workspace, you will find it hard to stay fully focused and 100% motivated. If you can, turn an entire room in your home into an office. Increase the amount of storage space to stay organized, provide a comfortable office chair to avoid back pain, and make home working your productivity asset.
Rule n°2 : choose a bright place to work
Daylight helps reduce the feeling of fatigue, far away from the artificial neon light in your office. For more feng shui, avoid working in front of a wall but rather in front of a window to feed yourself with solar energy.
Rule n°3 : use and abuse the decoration to create an energizing atmosphere
Opt for beautiful furniture, design, Scandinavian and trendy to escape in a zen way in a place favorable to creation and ideas. Let your imagination run wild and decorate your office with taste, without forgetting plants to oxygenate the room.
Tips and tricks for a good interior design:
- How to create a beautiful productive home office – Fracture Blog – August 15, 2020
- 12 home office ideas to create a productive workspace – Brosa – August 11, 2020
#3 Set up a schedule: Plan Your Time
In home working, you have full control over the management of your time. But be careful not to fall into the trap of laziness: get up at noon, take long lunch breaks and be forced to finish at midnight.
To avoid being overwhelmed, set schedules and plan your time according to your productivity cycles:
- Are you more productive in the morning between 9 and 11? Do your most important tasks at this time of day.
- On the contrary, you are not a morning person and you prefer to finish later? It’s up to you to adjust your work to your schedule so you don’t get late.
- You need to cut your day in half to free your mind and be back to 100% of your abilities? Give yourself a moment of zenitude by taking a nap, a yoga class or going for a walk in the park next door.
You are the one who defines your schedule, so make sure that it is best adapted to your preferences, without being too out of step with your colleagues to maintain social ties.
#4 Stay connected with your colleagues and break isolation
Even if you are not physically present in the office, you are a full part of this company, so don’t isolate yourself for several days without talking to your colleagues. Especially since your absence could be detrimental to the smooth running of certain missions, your team needs you too. So think collectively!
To help you stay connected, use corporate communication tools or instant messaging such as Microsoft Teams or Slack.
For example, in the morning, send a short message on your team’s channel to take the temperature, ask for news, and then focus on your work.
This type of tool is very beneficial in breaking isolation, but be careful not to abuse it. Use them rather in asynchronous mode, so as not to let the solicitations disturb your work every 5 minutes. React to urgent information but do not spend your time answering all the messages of your colleagues at the risk of losing a lot of time.
#5 Find the right tool that help built a remote work culture
In working from home, in order to maintain the same level of requirement and productivity as in the office, it is better to find, in addition to a communication tool, the right business management tool to help you on a daily basis. Using only Teams or Slack would not be enough, so take stock with your entire team and find the ideal tool for your organization.
You need to be able to maintain full transparency with your colleagues (file sharing and real-time updates) so that everyone is on equal terms. But also to be able to exchange on important topics, to be aware of the latest business information without micromanaging and to work hand in hand on all your projects.
With the whole team, choose the tool that will meet the expectations of each person (yes, it is possible). In other words, a tool that allows you to :
- Connecting people around a common platform
- Facilitate inter-team communication and reduce collaborative overload
- Organize your activity: create shared workspaces
- Common objectives to move forward together on projects
- See in real time the progress of the teams on the action plans
- Obtain automated progress reports on collaborative projects
- Digitize and manage all types of meetings (Executive Committee, Steering Committee, one-on-one meeting…)
Tips & tricks to find the right business management tool :
- 06/08/2020 – 6 tips for managing your team remotly – BeesApps
- 21/02/2019 – The importance of having a good tool to manage your activity – BeesApps
#6 Use recognized anti-procrastination and 100% productive methods
In remote work it is very easy to postpone your tasks to the next day. You will suddenly discover a passion for ironing so that you don’t have to finish writing your sales presentation…
To prevent this from happening you will be able to set up small productivity rituals with different methods:
Set your timer to 25 minutes and stay 100% focused on a single task. At the end of this session, take a short break and start again until you complete your task. After several sessions, take a longer, well-deserved break.
To increase your productivity by 90%, try to do 1 very important task every day; 3 less important and time-consuming tasks and 5 small, easy tasks. This way you prioritize your work and at the end of the day you have the satisfaction of being able to check 9 boxes on your to-do list.
The Zen To Done method is based on the establishment of 10 good habits. The idea is to focus on one of these habits for 1 month. Once you have succeeded in effectively practicing this habit you can move on to the next one.
#7 Avoid distractions
Probably one of the most difficult things about working from home: not giving in to distractions > watching an episode of your favorite TV show, trying out a new recipe, tidying up… Yes, working from home is also about dealing with all those hobbies and pastimes that are within your reach.
Here are some tips to adopt if you want to stay focused throughout your work day:
Isolate yourself in your workspace
If you are not alone at home, ask your family and friends not to disturb you.
Avoid temptation: no television, video games or newspapers in your office.
In short, act as if you were in the office. But don’t be too rigid either, you have the right to give yourself breaks.
Also, look on the bright side for those who have children, as David Tate testifies for Lifehacker :
“Once I realized that working at home meant more time with my kids I just mentally substituted the time spent in the car with time on the floor with them, and my stress melted away awkwardly like reheated queso”.
75% of remote workers report that working off-site has improved their work-life balance (Wrike survey).
#8 Take breaks and practice sports
Why is taking breaks important?
Simply because after 52 minutes of full concentration you lose efficiency. What normally takes 20 minutes to complete will then take twice as long. Taking breaks is therefore essential to stay productive, so stop feeling guilty!
If during these breaks you want to move forward with your daily household chores and it helps you to refocus, do so.
“Before you sit down to work for the day, make a list of a few quick chores that need to get done: two loads of laundry, washing and chopping vegetables for dinner, dusting and vacuuming the basement, etc. When you need to stand up and get your blood moving, check off a chore from the list then get back to work“, (Howstuffworks).
In addition, it is important to keep up a regular sport activity to clear your mind and get out of the house. So put the time you save on transports to good use in a little sports session!
71% of remote workers say they are happy in their current job, compared to 55% of on-site workers (Wrike survey).
And you, what are you doing to stay efficient and productive while working from home? Share all your tips and strategies in the comments.