Unprecedented times they say, well certainly more people are working at home than ever before and for an unclear future period. It’s worth taking some time to consider how to do this successfully, put some effort into planning and methods that can reaps rewards. Homeworking can be fruitful and fun but don’t forget you’ll have to return to work eventually so don’t get caught into bad habits.
Setting the environment
Getting this right is critical if deskbound for a long period. Set aside a place to work with space, good seating, good light and ventilation.
For work on the web: cable link rather than wi-fi works best; and wi-fi can be improved by shutting off other devices, placing your router away from electronics and walls, and seemingly avoiding use of microwave ovens!
Create a routine
Individual approaches to work can span the extremes; from hard to self-motivate, through to can’t switch off. Work needs to be approached with some discipline. Create a routine with a schedule, set goals, preferably small ones. Approach homeworking as you would your normal work-day activity: get up at a usual time, prepare as though leaving the house, maybe dress as you would at work.
Adapt tasks to fit to home or remote environment. It’s a good opportunity to clear stuff; sort that inbox, organise your folders.
Take breaks, (from computers at least 5 minutes every hour); move around and do some stretching exercises.
Avoid distractions but not at the expense of social interaction. If you have childcare, approach like you are flexible working; schedule time for no disruptions.
But don’t forget many work rules remain unchanged: keep confidentiality of information and follow GDPR rules.
Communication is the number one
Ensure you have regular and meaningful contact with your manager. Stay part of the team. Organise and participate in virtual team meetings, preferably each day.
Avoid isolation and demotivation this can lead to poor metal health. Connect often, utilise the variety of social media and especially video so contact is varied; but importantly re-read policies and rules to ensure good behaviour at all times.
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