Working from home isn’t a new thing at all. It is gradually becoming common nowadays. And with the ongoing COVID-19 infection and lockdown situation, everyone is currently working from home.
Working from home has many benefits, so more and more people and companies are adopting remote work philosophies.
But it can be really troublesome if you can’t manage it well.
You need to focus on your work and give time to your family at the same time as well.
So, here are some of the effective ways to increase productivity while working from home.
Get Yourself a Space First
The first thing you need to do when working from home is to find yourself a personal space for work. You might be working from home, but anywhere isn’t a good idea.
You can’t be productive while working from a living room where your wife is watching your favourite show on Netflix and your child are playing.
You will need to find a good working space where you will feel comfortable and commit to work every day. Working from the same place every time will help you get into your productive zone faster.
Set up Your Workplace
The next thing you need to do is, set up your workplace. Depending upon the working space, you might need a good lighting condition, set up furniture, and have things around you that you feel comfortable about.
Everything that is necessary, that you need, place it well in your working space. Place everything within your reach so that every time you need them, you can use them without wasting much of your time searching for them. This will also prevent you from getting distracted and you can continuously focus on your work.
Set a Schedule and Follow it
You need to plan your daily working activities and make a schedule and follow it regularly. Identify when you will be more productive, more energetic, and more focused and accordingly set your work schedule.
Break your work into smaller tasks and focus on those tasks. This will help you save time and complete your tasks more easily. This way you can organize your time well. There is a perfect technique known as the Pomodoro Technique which is a time management technique. It says to break down your work into smaller tasks and take regular short breaks between the tasks.
You need to focus on smaller goals and give your best to achieve those goals. This will give you time to plan what technique and tools to use, plan about the process, and so on. Set your working schedule before the day begins, so that you will be more focused on what you will be doing today. And set time for each task you do.
Once you set a schedule, you now need to set priorities. Not every task you do need your attention and might not be important. Why waste your time and effort on less important tasks?
There might be more important tasks that are more important and need your attention immediately. So you need to identify high priority tasks and low priority tasks. So when you start your work, set priorities for the day and stick to it. Make a To-Do list and set priorities.
Inform Your Family Members
You need to inform your family members that you are working from home so that they don’t disturb you for each and everything. Tell them not to disturb you when you are working. Most of the time you used to be in your office, but now you are working remotely, so they might want to spend quality time with you. So, set boundaries and set time to spend on your work and with your family.
While working from home, separate your personal life and professional life in order to maintain productivity.
Get Rid of Distractions
Even a small change, a small distraction might affect your productivity. So, get rid of everything that might distract you. Sometimes, you feel like watching TV, take your dog out, play with your children, spend time with your family members, and many more when you are working from home. So, separate time for each task and set priorities.
One can easily get distracted and affect productivity. So, stay off from social media, YouTube, and other online platforms. Limit the use of mobiles unless it is an emergency. Stay away from your family members as well when working.
Use Project Management and Communication Tools
Even if you are working remotely, you still need to report everything to your client, to your superior regularly. You still need to communicate with your team members. You still need updates about the projects. So, what can you do here?
You need to use project management tools and communication tools to communicate and collaborate with your team members easily and track the project progress. With the help of these tools, you will know what your team members are working on and vice versa. This reduces confusion and misunderstandings and reduces rework. Thus saving your time and effort and increases yours as well as your teams’ productivity.
Track Your Time and Tasks
You need to track your time so that you don’t spend too much of your time on one task only. You need to work in blocks of time giving time for each task. Spending too much time on one task might hamper the other tasks and hamper the deadlines. So, you need to realize the importance of deadlines and you need to complete the tasks within the allocated period.
On the other hand, you need to track your tasks so as not to lose the main goals and motive of completing the tasks. Tracking your tasks not only helps you but also helps your team members to know how much time is needed and how much work is left to complete the tasks in order to continue the other task because sometimes some tasks are interdependent.
I would recommend you to use Top Tracker as it is free and maintained by a famous company Toptal and is quite reliable. It also has desktop apps and that can take screenshots and reminds you frequently if you want to change activity(task you are wokring on)
You don’t have to commute to the office for daily standups. Since you are working remotely, you and your team member can use a project management tool or a communication tool for reporting daily standups.
For example, you can create a separate channel on Slack for daily standups. So, everyone can post their work of the day and work they will be doing tomorrow. Everyone can see the daily standups. This helps to prevent misunderstandings and reduce rework.
You and your team members can focus on your work without interrupting the workflow and without interrupting each other.
Take Short Breaks
Taking short breaks between the intervals helps you to be more productive since your body and mind will be refreshed. Working continuously depletes your energy and you might not be as focused as you felt in the morning. This means that your body and mind need some rest. So, taking short breaks helps to refill energy in you.
You can also take a power nap of 10 minutes to refresh yourself.
Your health is most important. If you have good mental and physical balance, then you can be more productive.
If you have just started to work remotely, then you may feel uncomfortable working because you are not accustomed to working from home. You have to work in a different environment. If you follow the above-listed ways, then you will be more productive when working from home. Hope this article helps you.
If you have any suggestions regarding the article or if you have any productivity tips, then please comment below.