As the threat of COVID-19 continues, companies around the world are being encouraged to implement a work-from-home (WFH) policy to protect their employees and help contain the spread of the virus.
Working from home is not a new concept. But only a few companies have implemented such an arrangement. A survey conducted by the Employers Confederation of the Philippines shows that only 28% of Philippine-based companies have a work-from-home policy. It’s safe to say that many domestic firms and companies are adopting a remote work setup for the first time due to the recent events.
And everything feels uncertain.
This can be a tricky period for everyone—whether your company is a WFH newbie or veteran. So, to help you stay productive, here are some tips.
1. Prepare for the day like you would if you’re going to your officeSet a ‘morning ritual.’ Get your caffeine fix. Take a shower. Check your e-mail. Whatever you do to prepare for work, do it even at home.
The best way to stay productive when you’re telecommuting is to be mentally prepared to work, no matter where you are.
2. Declutter and keep a dedicated workspace
Clean your work area. Stay away from the temptation of doing your chores (and most especially, the distraction of Netflix!)
Find a spot in your home where you are comfortable enough to work.
3. Create a task list
Work-from-home or not, keeping a list of your deliverables helps you stay focused and productive.
Having a list will also keep you on track of your productivity levels. You’ll be surprised at how much you can accomplish in a day.
4. Set a regular schedule (and stick to it)
If it’s possible to maintain your regular working hours, go for it. Do more when you’re most productive. Take mid-day breaks. And know what time you’ll clock out for the day. It’s easy to forget to stop working when you’re telecommuting. But that will only exhaust you and make you unproductive for the following days.
A work-from-home setup takes a whole lot of discipline.
5. Maximize productivity tools to stay connected
Technology makes it possible for us to do a lot of things that were impossible before. Use them! There are a lot of productivity tools available right now for free, like Trello and Slack. These tools will help you track each other’s tasks and remain connected as if you’re working face-to-face.
For work-from-home newbies, it’s essential that you remain engaged and accessible to your colleagues and managers, especially in the first week of transition.
6. “Show up” and actively participate in meetings
Video conferences are unavoidable, now that you’re working from home. Make your presence known by speaking up when you need to and contributing to the conversation. You will not be seeing your colleagues for a month or so; be present—even virtually.
7. And finally, know what works best for you
By now, you should be able to figure out your WFH strengths and weaknesses. Not every item in this list will universally work for everyone, so it’s important that you know what keeps you productive even at home.
Read Related Article: The Pros and Cons of Work-from-Home Careers