I have worked from home for many years and, I've always been adamant that workers can give significantly more output without some common interruptions from the modern day workplace. Meetings about meetings, water-cooler chats - not to mention the dreaded office politics can make time-wasting, for whatever reason, have a significant impact on work output. I have worked in many offices throughout my career, and felt that time has been wasted a lot of time on such things. Now I know (and have proven) there's a better way to work, for those that are able. With the rise of the internet, I see no reason at all not to work remotely. And, since I've worked this way, I've been more successful. My focus is high, I have no interruptions, and I get stuff done. However, there are issues, of course. How can you trust staff to actually work? Why they work for you if you don't trust them is perhaps a better question...With the lure of Netfilx and the fridge just a step away, how can you ensure that you will actually work? Here's my top tips to ensure that you work effectively from home:
1. Get up and Get Dressed
It would be easy to lay around in a onesie, laptop resting on your tummy. However, I've always been a believer that what you wear can impact on your mindset - getting up and getting ready as if you're going to be seen by clients or colleagues is a must if you want to get into work mode.
2. Make a Space
Creating an inspiring workplace with all your equipment in is a must. It is an extension of number 1. If your space is professional and personalised and you associate it with work, it will help you with your mindset when you enter it. Also, consider your ergonomics.
Are you comfortable in your chair? Is your screen at the right height?
3. Keep Warm
One bit of house-keeping that I had to consider when setting up my home office - what if I'm cold in the winter months? Further to this, what's the point of heating the entire house just for one room? So, I got myself an economy heater, a work fleece (branded, naturally) and a hot water bottle. Sorted.
4. Take a Break
Have regular breaks at the same time if possible - especially important for those with screen-heavy work. This is obviously good for your well-being, and I've found that it instills the same sense of routine as if working in a traditional office environment.
5. Consider Communication
Very important, this one. How will you communicate with your clients and colleagues? Whatsapp groups, Skype and Facetime are all good ideas. Making my clients aware that I am accessible is of key importance to me. Even if you're involved in other tasks, acknowledging their communication and giving them timelines in invaluable and respectful - not to mention reassuring.