How to remain productive when working from home

Posted: Sunday January 12 2020

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With 50% of the UK workforce set to work remotely this year, business owners have a perfect chance to offer employees the opportunity to take a break from the office – and keep them motivated to complete tasks. Working from home, or a café, or anywhere else, can provide huge health and wellbeing benefits to staff. As well as inspiring creativity – because they’re not staring at the same four walls every day – cracking on alone, in peace and quiet, can mean no distractions when, for example, finalising a big project.

 

By Katie Mallinson

Keeping people driven, and instilling trust to accomplish goals, is imperative for business owners to ensure a happy, dedicated workforce – and ideally the physical place for doing so should not be important.

 

“However, it’s always key to know that anyone working out of the office can operate at the same high-quality level, and ensure they remain productive. Here are my top four tips to help keep you on track…

 

Planning

If you’re anything like me, you’ll love having something in place that lets you know exactly what goals you need to focus on that day. Setting targets, and your next priority, allows you to be realistic in what you can achieve – and sets the tone for how your working from home day will take shape.

As well as having a list of tasks to complete, part of your preparation should include some simple elements too. For example, ensuring your space feels business-like, and your devices are connected with decent Wi-Fi, so that you’re ready to hit the ground running straight away!

 

Take regular breaks

This is a great way of ensuring you remain engaged throughout your day – and you can’t put a price on how important screen breaks can be for your health. Now, I’m not saying ignore your work completely and have an eight-hour time out, but make sure you take care of yourself and plot when you can next step away from your desk, laptop or mobile device.

Many people enjoy going for walks to get the creative juices flowing, stepping outdoors into the garden or just popping the kettle on. Whatever you need to ensure you come back motivated and ready to crack on with the next task – do it!

Communicate

Working remotely can often be isolating for many – depending on how you choose to spend your shift. So, it’s important to keep in touch with your colleagues, if you have them, or clients, should you work with them.

It’s not a case of checking in every hour because that’s no benefit to anyone, but it might be worth letting the relevant people know that you’ll be out of the office that day, and contactable via email – or your mobile phone.

 

Don’t always stick to 9-5 – but clock-off at a reasonable hour!

For many people working out of the office, they tend to work even longer days, in order to ‘prove’ that they’re being productive. Forget that!

Managers should have the trust in their colleagues to know that wherever they’re working, that they’ll be getting the job done. If they don’t – why are they hired in the first place?

Every colleague differs in when they’re most productive and how they achieve their goals each day. For some, that could be starting and finishing early so that they can go pick up the kids or log-off and enjoy their evening. For others, they might want to begin later and work into the wee hours because that’s when the creative juices really flow.

Whatever motivates staff and owners the most – and compliments the business commercially – do it that way. For bosses, if your organisation fits a flexible working model, put something in place to reflect that. It should go a long way to ensuring you’re getting the best out of your employees whose boats aren’t necessarily floated by a ‘9-5’.

The world of work is constantly changing, and employees require greater flexibility, trust and motivation, in order to feel fulfilled and inspired to do more. So, it’s important that they’re given the tools to enjoy what was once the ‘traditional working day’ and feel safe in the knowledge that they can successfully complete their priorities – regardless of where they might be.