Whether you’re in a position that allows you to work from home all the time or just one or two days a week, use these tips to make a day at home the most productive one you have all week.
Tips for Working from Home
Create a designated work space
If you work from home often, consider creating a space to be used specifically for working. Sure, checking tasks off your to-do list from your bed or the couch sounds great in theory, but to minimize distractions, set up a home ‘office.’ Something as simple as a small desk and a comfortable chair work perfectly.
Forward your office phone to your cell phone
Talk with your company to see if you have call forwarding capabilities. This phone functionality will allow you to forward all calls you receive at the office to your cell phone so you don’t miss any important calls you would receive at the office.
Treat it like a day in the office
If you normally work a 9am-5pm schedule at the office, do the same at home. Try to take your lunch break and any other breaks at the same time as you would in the office. Though it can be tempting to do some errands during the day and work later at night, you’ll be benefiting yourself and maintaining the quality of your work if you make a schedule and stick to it.
Change out of what you slept in
We aren’t advising you to put on your normal office attire for a day at home (wearing comfortable clothing is one of the many perks of working at home, of course!) but we are advising you to at least change out of the pajamas you slept in the night before.
Take advantage of video and conference call technology
Just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you have to sit faceless behind your computer all day. Take advantage of video and conference call technology to meet face-to-face (or at least voice-to-voice) with coworkers or clients.
Post up at a coffee shop
When you feel the urge to throw in another load of laundry or start on that night’s dinner, try relocating to a nearby library, coffee shop or bookstore. Not only will it provide for a nice change of pace but working with people around may encourage you to be more productive.
It’s important to maintain some social connection by continuing to communicate with your coworkers and your boss throughout the day. If your company has instant messaging capabilities, make sure to remain signed on all day so you are easily accessible. If not, check in with a short email or phone call.
Set boundaries with friends and family
Make sure your friends and family know that even though you are at home, you are still working. Set clear boundaries and let them know your hours so they don’t call or stop over when you’re trying to be productive.
Go into the office
If you work from home every day, make sure to make time to stop in to the office and attend company outings as often as you can. Nothing helps you bond more with your coworkers than face-to-face interaction!