If you’re like thousands of others, you may have found yourself in a permanent work from home situation after COVID-19 completely changed the business landscape. Working from home is a good option for many of us, and the more that we prepare, the easier this transition will be.
For instance, a dedicated workspace is ideal to help minimize distractions and improve productivity during the day. If you can, pick a room in your house and configure it so it acts as your permanent work from home office.
“Choosing a workspace takes planning,” wrote Tech Radar. If you have a spare room, that might be your best bet. “Take a day to empty or rearrange the spare room, leaving space for a desk. Also, ensure a power supply is in easy reach, and if not, ensure you have an extension cable with enough plug sockets available.”
Also, maintain a consistent working schedule and enforce that schedule with your family the best you can. For example, if you plan to work from 8 am to 5 pm with a one-hour lunch break, then be sure that your family respects those hours. Constant interruptions during the day kill productivity and distract us from getting our job done.
By the way, enforcing your work schedule also includes self-imposed distractions.
For example, working with the television on or a movie playing is easy when you are working from home, but the noise from those things can disrupt our concentration. Keep the TV and Netflix off during working hours. And, resist doing chores (cleaning the bathroom, vacuuming, etc) during your workday, too.
Pretend that you are at a traditional office (away from your home) as you work.
You will need a fast and consistent Internet connection for most work from home jobs. Your connection to the Internet will be used for video conferencing, webinars, and other remote forms of communication. As a result, reliability is a big considering factor. You may need to upgrade your Internet service to reliably stay in touch with your employer.
When in doubt, try it and see. If you can stream video from services like Netflix or YouTube TV at all times during the day, then you will probably be okay.
But again, experiment and go from there.
Pro tip: Get started working as early in the day as possible. Especially if your spouse or kids are still in bed, getting a jumpstart on your workday can spark a noticeable improvement in your productivity and will allow you to call it quits a bit earlier in the afternoon.
“Simply getting a project started first thing in the morning can be the key to making progress on it gradually throughout the day. Otherwise, you’ll prolong breakfast and let the morning sluggishness wear away your motivation,” writes HubSpot.