Remote work is the future!
Do you see your personal and professional life getting mixed while working from home? It won’t after you read this guide.
As 100% of our employees have worked from home for the past five years, it was relatively easy to switch to remote work last year.
So, we decided to create a resource that consists of our learnings over the last few years working from home.
Below, you’ll find the 30 most practical work from home tips to make remote work effective, enjoyable, and sustainable. Let’s get started!
1- Have a Separate Office Space
A separate space for working is ideal. Apart from providing a similar environment to the office, it helps you disconnect from work at the end of the day. If you work and sleep in the same area, you’ll likely feel frustrated in a few weeks and will always be at work mentally.
2- Create a Schedule
Working from home can make managing personal and professional life difficult. Therefore, it is vital to set up boundaries. When creating a working schedule, you should choose hours when you’re the most productive. You can also consider having a no phone time if possible.
3- Be Aware of Your Team’s Schedule
If your team creates its own schedule, everyone must be aware of it. This is essential as you can ask for things during times that are convenient for everyone.
4- Eat Food on Time
While in the office, it’s easy to just look for the nearest food spot and have lunch. When working from home, this might not be an option. But you need to feed yourself on time. If you don’t have a proper daily care routine, it may affect your health (including slowing your metabolism).
5- Get Out As Much As Possible
The pandemic has made all of us stay at home 24/7. And most of us are frustrated. To make work from home sustainable, it is essential to get out for some fresh air.
You can go out for a morning or evening walk. Meet your neighbors, talk to people, even if it is just for 15 minutes. But, again, don’t forget to wear a mask and practice social distancing.
6- Communicate With Your Team Often
If your team lacks regular communication, it’s easy to get confused, affecting productivity and project delivery.
Therefore, it is crucial to invest in tools like Slack and iTeleCenter that make collaboration seamless. Slack allows you to engage with your team via chatting, while iTeleCenter offers phone communications.
If you’ve got teams, agents or reps in different locations, you can use NumberInventory, purchase numbers and market your business and sell your products in multiple countries.
7- Use Status Updates as Much as Possible
When working from the office, it is easy to check if someone is at their desk. Unfortunately, you can’t do that in a remote environment.
Status updates can help overcome this issue. Almost every productivity app allows you to update status (online, away, on a break, etc.). This will let your team members know what you’re up to.
8- Create a Technology Backup Plan
Make a backup plan to get your team online asap during an internet outage, or computer crashes to keep the work going. Don’t wait until that happens, have a plan in advance to get back up and running quickly.
9- Get Ready as If You’re Going to Office
While the world is working in pajamas, getting ready as if you’re going to the office can make a lot of difference. It will mentally prepare you for work, and when you change your clothes at the end of the day, it will make maintaining a work-life balance easier.
10- Reach Out If You’re Feeling Isolated
When working remotely, it’s easy to feel lonely and isolated. Leverage your company’s communication tools to reach out to your team and talk to your work friends. To make remote work enjoyable, you can also hold leisure meetings on off-days or virtual lunch meetings.
Depending on your fitness level and goals, grab basic home workout equipment (dumbbells, kettlebell, resistance bands, etc.) and fire up a 15-20 minute session every day. This will keep your mind fresh and improve productivity.
Apart from the workout, meditation can also help improve focus, enhance your mental health, and prevent frustration. A 10-20 meditation session in the morning will make you feel calm and give you a sense of peace that can benefit your emotional well-being and overall health.
13- Take Small Breaks
Working continuously for hours can affect your productivity and mental health. Take short (10-15 minutes) breaks to recharge yourself. Eat your preferred snack, listen to your favorite music, or just walk around your house. You’ll be surprised how these simple things can help you get extra hours of productivity every day.
14- Invest in Good Headphones
When working from home, you will find yourself attending zoom calls very often. Good noise-cancellation earphones can minimize distractions and enable you to focus on what’s important. And, if you listen to music while working, it can help you stay in the flow.
15- Turn Your Camera On During Meetings
Seeing your colleagues’ faces builds empathy and prevents feelings of isolation. So, the next time you’re in a meeting, turn your camera on and encourage others to do so. It will also enable you to share some light-hearted moments (remember watching video call gone wrong videos?) and enjoy the meeting.
16- Work from Cafes or Coworking Spaces
Changing your working space once or twice a week can give you motivation and prevent cabin fever. The change in the work environment also eliminates the feeling of being stuck in one area forever. However, make sure it is safe to do so (owing to the pandemic).
17- Avoid Overworking
Since the lines between personal and professional life have become blurred, it is easy to overwork. Like scheduling your work, it is crucial to set up clear boundaries on when you leave at the end of the day.
For example, by making a quick announcement that you’re done for the day, shut down your computer immediately. Don’t wait to say bye to your colleagues or wait for them to respond.
18- Leverage Distraction Limiting Tools
It’s easy to binge-watch your favorite series on Netflix or watch funny videos on YouTube for hours. However, this can have a serious impact on your work.
19- Set Ground Rules for Family Members
Set clear ground rules for people at your home about your working space. For instance, if you have kids, they need to know what they can and cannot do near your work desk. If you share your workspace with another adult who’s working from home, negotiate quiet times, meeting areas, and any shared equipment like a charging socket.
20- Ask for What You Need
No one was prepared for this 100% remote work. And the chances are you might not have everything you need to work at your best. It could be as a mouse, comfortable chair, or software. However, if you’re working remotely short-term and are expected to return when everything’s normal, you must be willing to make compromises. For instance, a chair and desk won’t be a good investment for the company.
21- Improve Your Skills
While in the office, companies hold regular training and learning sessions to improve your skills. However, remote work has taken away this luxury. While many companies offer online courses, you can go beyond it and take other learning opportunities that you think will help boost your career.
22- Do What You’ve Always Wanted to Do
Working from home means you don’t have to spend hours commuting. Instead, use these extra hours to do what you’ve always wanted to do. It could be cooking, creating a YouTube channel, or learning a new skill.
23- Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself or Others
It is crucial to extend some kindness and have a forgiving attitude towards your colleagues, clients, and bosses in these unprecedented times. You might not know what the other person is going through. Cut them some slack.
24- Use a Task Management App
Having a clear list of tasks you need to complete the next day can make your work easier. You can easily break each task into different hours so you can accomplish all of them by the end of the day. You can also consider using a task management app, so you stay on top of the tasks at hand, and your team can track your progress.
25- Create a Rewards System for Yourself
This is a great way to complete tasks on time, even the things that you’ve been procrastinating. For example, once you complete one task, reward yourself with your favorite healthy snack or take a short break.
26- Go for Workation
While it’s difficult to go on vacations until everything settles down, working from home for months (or years) can become tedious. Instead, you can go for workation (work + vacation).
The idea is to relocate for a few weeks or months to a beautiful destination without affecting your work. Don’t worry; workation providers ensure you get everything you need to work (internet, charging sockets, etc.).
27- Create a Stress-free Zone
Working from home for months can be stressful. And too much stress can pose a mild threat to your mind and body. Therefore, it is essential to create a stress-free zone that helps reset you.
For example, if you have kids or pets, play with them when you feel stressed. You can also watch your favorite episode from your favorite series to relieve stress.
28- Don’t Take Responses Offensively
One of the biggest limitations of working from home is not being able to express ideas clearly. It is also easy to think that someone’s response was rude or even flippant. Remind yourself not to take responses offensively. Instead, focus on the message and take it positively not to create unnecessary stress.
29- Connect With Team Members Offline
If you have colleagues living in the same city as you, consider meeting them once a week or month (depending on the situation in your area). This will help build meaningful relationships with them and make your mind fresh.
Remote working is here to stay. You need to be prepared, so it doesn’t hurt your well-being, mental health, or productivity, for that matter. However, no one-tip fits all.
Experiment with the strategies mentioned in this article to determine what works best for you and continue implementing them. Happy Remote Working!
In a nutshell, Farooq is a proficient marketer at iTeleCenter with 11+ years of experience in Content Marketing. When he isn’t managing a team of marketing professionals, he watches edgy comedy on Netflix and explores the newest restaurants in town.