Many businesses are now faced with no other option than to allow employees to work from home. Some haven’t done this before as they are concerned that people wont work as well as they should (there’s less visibility and no trust) and others just haven’t done it as their business set up hasn’t allowed it.
However, with no other option and homeworking a reality to ensure the business and employees safely get through the current crisis it is important to ensure that you do it safely and successfully. You never know it might be the push the business needs to bring this in permanently!
Either way, for whatever reason it has been introduced it can be daunting but follow our top 5 tips to ensure it is a success – in the interim or longer term.
Have a dedicated workspace
When I first started working at home I just used to sit in the lounge or at the kitchen table and I used to achieve very little! Make sure you set yourself up for success – no distractions, everything that you need nearby (as if you were in the office) and no interruptions.
I appreciate not everyone has access to a dedicated home office but ensuring you have a dedicated space (even if it is at the kitchen table for now) will help you be more productive.
Discover your high productivity periods
We’re all different. My husband loves to get up and get on with his jobs early doors – I tend to work way into the night!
Work out when you are most productive and ensure you do your work during those times – obviously bearing in mind the need to meet business requirements!
Some people think working at home is a reason to not get dressed and maybe even not bother to shower!
Wrong! You have been trusted to work from home and therefore should show everyone the grown up professional that you are! Get yourself into the right mindset by following a normal routine as if you’re going out the door. It’ll help you focus and achieve more.
Plus you never know when someone may catch you out on a Skype call!
Although taking breaks might seem counterproductive, research has shown that taking short breaks can actually increase productivity and creativity levels. If you don’t have a work-life balance, then you won’t last too long working at home.
Follow the normal working time restrictions as you would in an office.
Check-in with each other
It often feels great being able to work from home but if it is happening on a long term basis a lot of people can start to feel isolated and alone.
If people are working at home they are still valuable members of the team. Ensure you check in regularly – not just by email. Pick up the phone, arrange virtual lunch time get togethers, team meetings online etc. There are many free tools out there that can support this.
Keep the communication alive and ensure everyone is supported. Just because you’re alright and loving life it doesn’t mean everyone at home is feeling the same.
I hope the above helps and gives you some things to think about and help to ensure any homeworking is a success.
I have put together a couple of documents that will hopefully also support any homeworking – please contact me if you would like a free homeworking policy, home working questionnaire and homeworking checklist – no obligation for future support! Some of the information stated will not be applicable due to the speed at which homeworking has had to be arranged in this current time but hopefully it will give you some areas to consider and help you to implement successfully.
Contact me if you have any further questions and/or would like support implementing, confirming or changing any homeworking practices.