In the search for a better work-life balance, teleworking is becoming more and more popular. High-speed Internet, video conferencing tools and cloud-based apps have made working from home a reality for many people; employees can be as productive from their living room as at the office. But how can you make sure to get the most out of teleworking, and how can you prevent your work life and home life from blurring when your workplace is in your home? Read on for Saro Recruitment’s guide to getting the best out teleworking!
Separate Home from Work
You may be delighted to give up the commute, but without it some workers find it hard to leave the home office and keep to strict working hours. You may find yourself checking work emails or spending time on urgent projects when you should be winding down. Or your productivity might suffer because of repeated family interruptions or by prioritising personal chores over your professional to-do list. To be as productive as possible, you need to treat your home office as if it’s a ‘real’ one – establish work hours, set boundaries for yourself and your family, keep to strict work times where you are not disturbed by personal tasks, and organise childcare if necessary.
Designate a Workspace
As important as establishing ‘office’ hours is establishing an office environment in your home. It’s preferable to have a spare room with a desk, where you can close the door to any noise and can switch to work mode. Avoid using the kitchen table – it’s too distracting when family are around and it’s harder to switch off during dinner time. If you don’t have a separate room and you’re working in a shared space, just make sure to pack everything away when you finish your work, so that you’re not tempted to check your emails when you’re supposed to be enjoying down-time.
Have a Dress Code
Just because you’re not in an office doesn’t mean that wearing pyjamas will work for you. Changing into ‘outside’ clothes can help you make the mental transition to work mode. Even if you stick to casual wear, just showering and getting dressed can make all the difference to your productivity. You may also need to video conference with colleagues and clients, sometimes last-minute, so make sure you are presentable. After work, changing into more comfortable clothes could also help you switch off.
Make a Plan and Stick to It
You may find that it’s harder to keep focused on your to-do list when you’re not in a traditional office, at arm’s reach of your team and manager. Even the best multitaskers can struggle when the line between home and work tasks become blurred. It’s essential that you make a list of daily tasks and stick to them, so that it doesn’t matter if you are interrupted, you can get it done by the end of the day.
Schedule Breaks in Your Day
You may be tempted to sit down first thing and then work non-stop until your family come home, keeping one eye on your computer screen while you eat your lunch, but this is a sure path to burnout. Just because your job is done from home doesn’t mean that you should never stop working – it can be detrimental to your health and productivity. Instead, make sure to schedule breaks into your ‘office’ hours for breakfast, lunch, exercise and then family time. This means you’re not ‘on’ all day and will give your brain a break.
Avoid Cabin Fever
Many home workers find that they miss interacting with colleagues in an office and are climbing the walls by the end of the week. To prevent this, make sure to get out of the house from time to time – meet a friend for lunch, work remotely from a library or cafe – anything to give you that social kick. Also, keep the lines of communication open with your co-workers by having face-to-face meetings whenever possible.
With a huge amount of computer applications available where you can store and share documents in a cloud with your colleagues and/or clients, it’s never been easier to work on the go. Upload your work materials to a cloud storage service and you can access them from any location. There are countless tools available for keeping in contact with your team, ensuring that you can check in regularly regardless of the location.
Are you looking for a new job with a better lifestyle fit? Contact Saro Recruitment today to get your work-life balance on track!
12 June 2018