Being more productive at home or the office is a challenge. In the digital age, everything from Facebook to Trump Tweets can be a major distraction. While the world is on lockdown, we’ve seen a shift with more workers being encouraged to live the dream of the work from home lifestyle.
Working from home or the office presents unique challenges to what can be achieved in any day. Working out of the office, your co-workers, meetings and long lunches. While we may miss personal contact with people, in the age of social distancing, there are plenty of distractions that get in the way of productivity.
The office inhibitions go out the window at the home office. There’s no pressure for the co-workers to deliver on deadlines. You don’t even have to get out of your pyjamas.
Here are a few tips to help you stay on top of your workload and stay productive:
If you are working from home, then avoid the temptation to stay in your pyjamas. Getting stuck working from home doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice getting ready for work. You’re going to be more productive in clothes you would wear to work rather than your sweats.
Write a To-Don’t List
Everyone has a to-do list, but a list of things you are not going to do will give you a sense of purpose in your priorities. Writing down a list of distractions that you want to avoid will give a reminder of the things that you need to focus on before you switch a task.
Designate A Workspace
At the office, you have your desk and some clear boundaries of your workspace. If you’re in a situation that has forced you to work from home then take the time to set some boundaries. Avoid the kitchen and look for a quiet space that can you allow you to focus.
Build Transition in and out of work
The commute is an important part of the office routine, it gives you the time to mentally prepare for the office. Some listen to music on the way to work, a podcast while others will read the paper or a book. The moments you have before work and after work are similar to the preparation of a football game and that downtime before and after work can set you up for a productive work week.
Don’t get sucked in by the news
It’s difficult to avoid but the news is one of the biggest time consumers of the week. Digital news across social media, email and websites have plenty of distractions at the office and home. The lunch hour at home and the little breaks in the morning for reading the news all add up during the day and can put some serious holes in your work progress. Blocking out news websites on your phone and desktop can help the focus on work.
Track your progress
Take the time to celebrate the wins throughout the day by ticking off the accomplishments of your to-do list. Any win big or small should be celebrated as it gives you a chance to track your progress.
Avoid social media
Social media should be avoided at all costs either at home or at the office. From Facebook to Twitter it’s difficult to resist the urge to communicate or exhaust the news feeds. Social media is one of the biggest distractions to a productive work week.
Communication is key for any workplace either at home or in the office. If you have to go full remote then tools like zoom or teams will become essential. If it’s your first time working from home then there are always some issues. Talking with your colleagues over the phone or through video chat gives you a great chance to set the expectations like you would in the office.
Don’t forget to socialise
Team building is an important part of any positive culture. A happy team is generally a more productive team. Coffees, lunches are all part of the office culture in building a successful team and building a productive workplace.
Look to take a break
Whether you are in the office or working from home, you can’t work all day in front of the computer. A quick ten-minute break to stretch your legs or get a coffee is the perfect way to help you re-energise. No healthy workplace expects you to be a robot.