The coronavirus has captivated everyone. It is recommended to work from home to prevent further spread of the virus. This became clear again during Prime Minister Rutte's speech on March 16. Prime Minister Rutte and RIVM advise working from home as much as possible if possible. In the coming weeks, we also expect more and more people to work from home than usual. If working from home is completely new to you or you’re just curious how you can work more productively at home? If that’s the case, we have some tips on how you can work from home efficiently and how you can create a pleasant home work experience.
1. Follow your routine
Sleeping in sounds nice, but working from home is not the same as being off. With a good, regular morning routine you can increase your productivity and improve your energy level immensely. Just set your alarm every day and get up early. Dress like normal, have a nice cup of coffee and eat a good breakfast. After a morning routine, your working day can start off right. Open the laptop and go!
2. Create a workplace
Your home is of course much different from your office. Working from home is a lot easier if you have a workplace. Of course, you have a permanent workplace at your office, but that doesn't always work at home. Not everyone has enough space in the house, but still try to make a permanent workplace for yourself. A workplace increases your productivity.
3. Write a to-do list
Make a list of issues your want to pick up that day. Make sure your list is available. Start with the high priority tasks and divide larger projects into multiple small tasks. Research shows people are more productive in the morning. Therefore, start with your important tasks, and because your concentration weakens during the day, you can end the day with less important tasks or tasks that you can easily handle.
4. Work in blocks of up to an hour.
No one can concentrate on work all day. Yet people regularly try to power through. This is actually counterproductive and as a result the quality of your work deteriorates. One cannot concentrate on 1 task for more than 1 hour at a time, research shows. So try to take that fact into account, and take a short break of 10 minutes between blocks of concentration. This way you keep yourself sharp and you can start your next task with a clear mind.
5. Start early, stop early
Every business opens and closes at certain times. If you want to start earlier, that means you can take a longer break, or go home an hour earlier in the afternoon. Of course this should be discussed beforehand with your manager. Because if everyone decides to work at different times, things like meetings will no longer be as easy. But if both parties agree, you can start extra early and therefore relax earlier!
6. Making an appointment with your partner or roommate
Working from home with your partner sounds like a dream! Yet this can be a pitfall to your productivity. So make clear agreements about working from home. Make sure that you don't distract each other, if at all. Use headphones while working so that you are less easily distracted. If you have children, it is smart to discuss with your partner how you can take care of this. For example, work in half-days so that you can relieve each other.
7. Take breaks and set alarm clocks
We have a fixed time for lunch at the office, so also do this at home. Eat your lunch at set times, have a good cup of coffee in the morning and take a walk in the afternoon so you can get back to work fresh.
8. Keep communicating with your colleagues
Working from home en masse is a temporary solution for many jobs. But it is still important to keep communicating with your colleagues. If you normally consult a lot with your colleagues, you should continue to do so. Work with an internal chat such as Slack, call each other for an explanation of tasks or use Google Hangouts. This way everyone is informed and the whole company can continue their work without taking up too much time. Unfortunately we do not know how long we have to stay at home because of the coronavirus, but if we do our best together we can continue our work like normal.
9. Discuss your expectations with each other
Employees have many responsibilities when working from home, which requires a lot of trust from the employer. To meet each other well and meet each other's expectations, our advice is to communicate well with each other. Agree what you expect from each other. Which tasks have priority? What do you have on your to-do today? Which tasks have already been done? This is all important to have clear, because this creates trust between both parties and there are no wrong expectations.
10. When you are done, you are really done.
Do not get stuck in your work. It is tempting to continue for an hour longer, to finish something quickly. But it is important not to do this. As soon as your working day is over, you can close the laptop and continue tomorrow. This way you keep work and private life well separated.
A structure, good planning and clear communication is key.
Do you also work at home (compulsory) for a longer time because of the virus? Then structure is really indispensable at this time. It helps you be productive, keep you energized and motivated. Of course, you sometimes have a day when you have less work to do, but still ensure routine. Divide your day into blocks, take enough breaks at the right times and set daily goals. The key to success is good planning, structure and clear communication. And if working from home is something you do permanently, we at WehaveAnyspace have good Virtual Office options for you!