Working remotely because of the COVID-19 pandemic? While remote work is not a brand new concept, with social distancing and temporary travel bans, workers all over the world have to learn a new way of working.
How will I be productive working from home during this season?
What do I do about kids who are home?
How will I communicate with my team while working remotely?
Won’t I be tempted to eat all the snacks in my house?
How will this affect our company/team?
Is my job safe?
These types of questions may be running through your head right now. While we don’t have an absolute answer for that last one, we do have an answer for how to work well remotely. Change is hard. But this change doesn’t need to be as hard as you think. You can stay productive in this era of lock-downs and quarantines. In today’s post, we’ll cover ten strategies that will help you be productive as you work remotely during the current pandemic. Here we go.
Strategies For Working Remotely During The Current Pandemic
- Set an alarm for waking and sleeping. When you’re running your regular routine, it is likely you try to stick to a bedtime and waking up time. This should not change just because you are working remotely. Get as much rest as you can so you can wake up at a good hour to start working. Resting up will also strengthen your immune system.
- Get ready when you wake up. Brush your teeth, take a shower, brush your hair and get dressed. Even if you are not going outside of your home, you will be in a “home office” where you’ll be conducting business. Treat this as seriously as you would treat going to your work office somewhere in your city.
- Use timers to stay productive. Because we want to stay productive during this time, it will be important to find strategies that keep you productive. One suggestion is to use a timer. There are several tools to help you do this. For instance, Forest is a simple app you can get for $1.99 in the Apple Store and for free on your Google Chrome Browser. When you activate a timer on Forest, it will block out your access to social media websites and your email for the period of time you set. You will save yourself from the inevitable YouTube vortex and constant scrolling of social media news feeds. Other tools like Forest include Focus, Flora (smartphone apps) and Eggtimer (an online application).
- Use background noise. Some people can work in absolute silence. Other people cannot. If you’re in the latter group and you live alone at home, there are a few things you can do.
- Turn on your favorite music and let it play in the background as you work.
- You can turn on your favorite day time TV show and lower the volume while you work.
- There are several apps and YouTube channels that offer “white noises” like rain falling, waterfalls, the ocean waves crashing or chimes swinging in the wind. You can use these to set up background noise as well.
- Don’t give up on your dietary goals. Being indoors could make you give up on your dietary goals. But don’t give up! Continue to make healthy choices. If you find that you constantly want to snack but you’re not hungry, you’ll want to replace that with something else like completing small tasks that take less than 5 minutes per task.
- Give yourself a break – just like you’d get at work. After two to three hours of intense activity, it is fine for you to take a break to recover and reboot. So give yourself the chance to do that!
- Get familiar with popular teleconferencing software. Depending on where you work, you may already be using teleconferencing software like Zoom, Skype or GoToMeeting. Regardless of which software your company uses, it’s best to familiarize yourself with the software as much as you can. This way you won’t miss crucial communication with your managers and team members. The IT departments of certain corporations are offering their employees free versions of teleconferencing software. So ask your company about it, if this is something they do as well.
- Even though email can be a big distraction, during this season, your email is an essential link to the outside world. You cannot allow it to control your life. However, you may want to check once an hour so you don’t miss crucial information.
- Indoor exercise will keep you healthy and keep your stress levels down.
- Don’t forget the kids! If you have children at home who are now home because of school closures, work with them to set up schedules that will work for the whole family. Kids can still learn from resources like ABC Mouse, Khan Academy, YouTube and Udemy.
There is no doubt that working remotely is new for the average American. However, this will be a great lesson on adapting quickly to changes in the midst of a crisis. Having an employee wellness portal will help promote your health and wellness.
We can only offer to do our best in those circumstances and these tips will help you do that.