By Mary Fonvielle
Giving your employees the opportunity to work remotely from time to time has been shown to reduce stress, increase productivity, and improve efficiency. Working from the comfort of your home or your favorite coffee shop has its perks, but sometimes it can be hard to stay on track. Maintaining that work-life balance gets tough when the difference between your desk and the couch is a few easy steps.
So how do you stay productive and survive working remotely for an extended amount of time? We have a few survival tips!
Avoid the daily pajama party.
Lounging on the couch in your comfiest pair of tattered sweatpants sounds like a glamorous way to work, but the novelty wears off fast. Just like it’s a bad idea to bring your work laptop to bed with you, blurring the lines between “professional” and “off the clock” can be dangerous to your productivity (and your work-life balance.) You’ll probably notice how getting into your “work clothes” puts you in a different mindset from your “home clothes.” Keep those boundaries up and start your day by getting yourself ready to work just like you would if you were going into the office.
Distractions will happen — and that’s okay!
Cats on the keyboard, laundry you’ve been putting off, Mom somehow sensing you’re “able to talk real quick”… being out of the office comes with plenty of distractions. And that’s okay! Office life is equally full of distractions, we just don’t notice them because they’re part of the every day (although hopefully, your coworkers don’t sit on your keyboard for attention.) The key is allowing the distractions to happen, then getting back on track.
Schedule some time with your work buds.
As a card-carrying introvert, I’m first in line to choose working in my secluded home office, but staying social has its benefits! Keep up the team environment by scheduling some quality time with your favorite colleagues. Whether you’re getting on a quick call to update a co-worker on a project, or scheduling a meeting at a coffee shop to catch up on some new tasks, find ways to connect with your coworkers through more than emails.
Set daily goals.
Even if you’re keeping “office hours,” it’s sometimes hard to feel productive when your routine is thrown off. Try setting a few goals each day to help yourself stay on track. For example, maybe you need to make sure to send those important emails by 11, and have X, Y, and Z tasks completed by the end of the day. Even if you’re bouncing around between tasks, setting goals can provide a framework for your day.
Having the opportunity to work remotely can be both a blessing and a curse, but with the right approach it can be a relaxing and productive experience, and how often do those two things go together?