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Remote productivity 101

The global pandemic saw the uptake of remote working skyrocket as more people were forced to stay at home due to lockdown protocols. Though some thought it great and easily adapted to working from home. Many struggle to work from home and have more distractions than they had in the office. But how can you make your remote work productive?

1. Keep to your schedule

It is important to keep to the same schedule you had when you went into the office. This routine helped you to get your mind into gear for work. You could maybe wake up a little bit later but try to keep the schedule the same as to when you went to work. You should also change into work clothes as this will help you to move from your home environment to your work environment.

2. Block out time on your shared calendar to do deep work

It is important that you block out time on your schedule where you can do solid blocks of work without interruption. This time should be distraction-free. It is good to set blocks of no more than 90 minutes where you focused on your task at hand and nothing else. You should also let others in your space know that you are doing this by hanging a “don’t disturb” sign outside your door.

3. Set daily goals

It is important to look at the tasks you need to have done and set daily goals which you want to achieve. This will help you keep focused when the distractions come. By setting goals, you can also know that when you have achieved them you could stop working for the day. By working at home, people sometimes forget to log off at 17:00 and work until late into the night. It is important to have a cut off time for your work even if you haven’t managed to complete your goals for the day so that you don’t burn out from overwork.

4. Make use of team-building apps

Slack and Microsoft Teams are great apps that can help to build team rapport. You can have water cooler channels in Slack where people can go to have a chat with   colleagues. These apps also help to keep all communication with teams in one place. You can also upload important documents which need to be shared within your team in these apps. Even if you have a distributed team it is important to make sure all information is shared via these platforms so that no one feels like they were not present for the information shared.

5. Plan meetings well

Zoom fatigue is real because people have to always be present and focused during a Zoom meeting. You can’t look away in a Zoom meeting otherwise people might think you aren’t listening. Therefore you need to have a clear agenda set for the meeting and also ensure that you have supplied all the necessary documentation to the team before the meeting. You should also consider if a meeting is the best way to share the information. If the information could be shared via an email then do that. If people are unable to attend a meeting it is important to record it so that you can share it with them at a later stage. But on that note, you should also let people know that you are recording the meeting so that they are aware and can take the necessary steps to protect themselves.

6. Make a comfortable work environment

Make sure you have a comfortable chair which supports you while you sit. You should also ensure that you have a laptop stand to help with wrist injuries. If you are able, you should subsidise some of the equipment to help your employees to have a comfortable workstation at home.

7. Take productive breaks

It is important to take breaks during your work day to help you to remain sane. You should go for a walk or get a cup of tea or coffee. You could also do some meditation during this time. The break should help you to relax and recharge. Another idea for your breaks would be to call a friend or family member during this time.

By following these seven steps you will be well on your way to being more productive at home.

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