Studies have shown that for certain people working from home during the pandemic, work productivity has gone markedly down. Working from home can make it difficult to concentrate; distractions are everywhere, and it can feel a bit isolating. Fortunately, your home offers many opportunities for success provided you set the stage for and bring structure to your workday.
Our Artizen Staffing team has been working from home for the past 3 months and have gathered a list of tips that have helped us stay on track. By utilizing these tips, you can improve your productivity levels while getting used to the new normal.
Tip #1: Have a Dedicated Workspace
Getting into the groove of work can be hard when your workspace and living space are one and the same. The temptation of domestic activities can be very strong when you’re in your home all day. This is why it’s best to dedicate part of your house specifically to work. Whether a home office, or a corner of your bedroom, an area set up exclusively for work can make all the difference.
Dedicating one section of your house to work seems easy, but we suggest you take it a step further and push yourself to eat outside of this space as well. While eating at your desk might have been a normal part of your every day, it’s better to further reinforce the distinction between your home and your workspace so that when you go back to work after lunch it’s easier to focus only on work.
Tip #2: Avoid Social Media
Social Media for personal use can be extremely addictive—it’s fun and entertaining and it helps people connect to people they may be physically distant from and want to catch up with. However, when it’s time to work, distractions from these platforms can negatively impact productivity.
Since social media and other non-work-related parts of the internet can be a serious detriment to your at-home focus, we recommend keeping all non-work-related tabs on a separate window of your browser or closing them all together. The only open programs and documents viewable on your computer when working should be those related to getting your work accomplished. If you have difficulty keeping distractions off your computer, we suggest reading this article on a host of apps that can deactivate certain parts of the internet for you.
Tip #3: Look and Dress the Part
Feeling good about the way you look will help get you in the mood for work before you start. Any separation you can make between work and home helps create an important distinction in your mind about the level of your success. Looking and dressing like you’re going to have an important face-to-face meeting each day can change the way your mind thinks about you and your relationship to your work. While doing work in your pajamas can feel oh-so-comfortable, it can leave you feeling less than your A-level best. Think about it. Just as you’d never take an important “winning” meeting with untidy hair while wearing your pajamas, how you look and dress while working in your home office can reinforce feeling good about yourself and the work you do.
Even if you don’t dress in business attire every day, getting dressed in your normal work clothes for the day can also help reinforce the separation between your work and home life. While setting up a home office helps in separating home and work space, getting dressed for work can help in making the distinction between home and work time.
Tip #4: Take Small Breaks
Staying organized can be one of the biggest hurdles when working from home. Ways to add structure—such as structured breaks and work periods—can be part of that. Studies have shown that taking a small break between work sessions can improve creativity and increase your capacity for work. Trying to push through all your work at once can over-extend your brain and leave you feeling exhausted. When you do take a break, spend it away from your at-home work desk.
Tip #5: Set Regular Check-Ins
Having regular check-ins set with co-workers and your direct superior(s) will help you be a great deal more productive. Having them will make your deadlines for tasks feel more urgent and will also help with feelings of loneliness or isolation that can come from working from home. Regular video-enabled check-ins with people from your office gives you a degree of social interaction with people you know. Regular check-ins are a tangible means by which you can inject more structure into your day.
With all the changes in today’s work environment, it’s important to keep yourself consistently delivering the highest level of work possible. When working from home, our five tips can ensure you remain just as productive or even more so at home as you were in the office.
-The Artizen Staffing Team
written by Nina Medernach
As always, we welcome your feedback on this unprecedented journey and look forward to hearing what works for you, your friends, and your family!
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