Work from Home policies have become increasingly favourable as companies look to reduce business costs. Such policies mean that employees need to learn how to ensure productivity without the scrutiny of a boss. This can be challenging, as the home environment may be too comfortable for some.
Here are our 5 tips to help increase productivity at home:
#1 – Get ready for work
Getting ready as if you are leaving to go for the office. There is no need to dress in corporate wear, but get out of your pyjamas and change into something smart yet casual and comfortable. Remember to have your breakfast and coffee before you sit at your workstation. This will help to get you into the mood for work. If you start work immediately after you get out of bed, you will find the first hour unproductive, as you are likely to be feeling groggy from sleep. Getting ready for work even in your own home helps you feel refreshed, energised which consequently makes you more productive.
#2 – Set deadlines and stick to them
List down what you intend to complete by the end of the day and the week. Stick to what you planned and be disciplined. Going off your schedule means that your work will likely snowball, resulting in a tighter deadline and lower quality of work.
#3 – If you can’t stick to #2, get your boss involved
If you find yourself not meeting your own deadlines, you may need to get help from your boss. Ask your boss to set you reasonable deadlines or take the initiative to tell your boss when you will complete the assigned work. This will make you feel pressured to adhere to the deadlines, since you will not want to disappoint him or her.
#4 – Create a designated workspace
Creating a designated workspace does not mean you have to convert a room into a home office, although that is ideal. However, some of us may have limited space in our homes and cannot afford to turn an entire room into an office. In this case, you will need to identify the part of your home in which you feel most productive. It could be your dressing table or your dining table, but once you have identified that space, make sure it is clutter-free and work from the same space every day. This also serves as a signal to other family members. Once you are seated at your makeshift workspace, your family members should recognise that you “at work”, and not disturb you. If you can’t find that productive spot in your home, you may want to look outside. The nearest library or your favourite café could work as a workspace too, as long as you don’t find it distracting and you can still be productive.
#5 – Stick to your working hours
Although working from home gives you more flexibility, you should still try to stick to reasonable working hours such as 9.30am to 6.00pm, give and take an hour or so. Try to avoid scheduling non-work related appointments in the day, unless you are disciplined enough to make up for the lost time at night. This also ensures that you can provide prompt replies to your colleagues who may need to contact you throughout the day.
Stress and time management also play a huge role in affecting work productivity. To learn how to better manage time and stress, take a look at our personal development courses here: http://www.cegos.com.sg/blended-learning-2/blended-learning-courses-2/
In our next blog post, we will provide a different perspective and offer tips to manage employees who work from home. Stay tuned!