The coronavirus has accelerated the rate at which companies have embraced working from home and productivity has become an issue. More and more organisations are taking the bold decision of permanently making employees work from their homes. As much as work from home has been shown to increase productivity by up to 13%, efforts need to be taken to make sure productivity is maintained and eventually increased.
Working from home comes with many issues such as exposure to Distraction, unchecked freedom and having to trust yourself to deliver.
On a good side, it saves time and cost of commuting to and from work. The average person spends close to 4 hours commuting to work if you find yourself in Accra and other busy towns and cities in Ghana. Work from home also provides a flexible working schedule for you.
Contrary to popular belief, research shows that working from home could actually give a boost to your productivity, earning you promotions and praise. However, this doesn’t come easy or naturally. You have to work it out first. Here are our findings on how to boost your productivity while working at the comfort of your home.
8 Strategies To Grow Productivity Levels While Working from Home
1. Know Your KPIs and Set Priorities Accordingly
Whether you work for yourself or you work for an organization, there are certain key tasks that show your productivity levels. Normally, these key tasks or milestones will be used to appraise your work.
That said, you need to know exactly what you are supposed to. Deep knowledge of your key deliverables will help you to plan out your days, map out deadlines and to be able to meet them right away.
- Know Your KPIs
- Plan with your KPIs
- Plan Out How You Will Achieve Them
2. Have a Plan for Each Day Based on Deadlines and Priorities
Planning is such an important part of any work schedule. Working from home particularly adds more need for planning since the home environment can easily become chaotic and full of distractions.
You need to draw a plan out for your days, weeks and months. Factor in your personal needs, other family members, kids if you have any and break sessions. Without a plan, You might end up working all day which wouldn’t be good for your mental and overall health.
- Set Deadlines
- Assign Priorities
- Learn to Delegate
3. Create a Distraction-Free Work Space (Well equipped as well)
Distraction is one of the factors that make working from home difficult. This can be attributed to the fact that most people haven’t configured their homes for work. A switch to work from home could easily become a nightmare of distractions all over.
Make sure to work out the best combination of solutions to help you be at the top of your game. Make sure to have a setup ready to do all you may be required to do so you don’t have to leave home in the middle of work to get a new piece of equipment. Take note of the following;
Some equipment needed for working from home.
- Video & Audio/Microphone Equipment for calls
- Reliable and Good Internet Connection
4. Show Up as You Would Show To Your Normal Office
Work from home fantasies such as waking up at the time you want, showing up for work in anything you feel like wearing or the famous pyjamas, having poor time management aren’t exactly the best practices for high-level productivity while living where you also work.
Experts advise you shower, dress up in the right and usual attire, brush your hair, and if you’re a lady, have moderate makeup. This adds up to psyching up your mind for work and makes you professional in how you approach your work.
- Dress Up
- Brush Up
5. Take (Scheduled) Breaks
You may have noticed that working from home could easily turn an 8 – 5 job to a 24/7 job. Discipline should be exercised while working from home if you are to maintain a good balance between work and other personal and family commitments.
It is advisable to work in chunks of time such as 90 minutes after which you take a 15-minute break. This allows you to relax and avoid burnout.
It helps to factor in all of your breaks and working times to your plan. This way, you would be able to determine the time you would take to perform and complete tasks and meet deadlines.
- Have Breaks
- Don’t work 24/7
- Plan your time
6. Communicate Often With Team Members And Managers
tend to, in an attempt to engage team members, have more meetings. According to experts, this is wrong as an estimated 31 hours of employees time is typically spent on meetings that don’t help.
Managers should however have more one on one sessions to coach and lead their teams on a personal level. Team members should also avoid typing up all communications via online platforms. Pick the phone and find that out.
- Have less lengthy meetings.
- Have more frequent one on ones and check-ups.
- Schedule meetings with only very key persons. All others should be left out.
7. Psych up for the shift. Learn to manage the freedom
Switching to a work from the home routine involves as much planning as it does with psyching up for what lies ahead of each day. Treat it as a regular job. Have a routine for work which will become second nature. Try to move quite a bit and not stay stationary for long periods.
8. Get Your Family In The Plan
If you stay with your family, it is right to inform them of your new schedule and have some form of arrangement with them. Schedule time for things so that they know when you are available and when you are not. If you have a door, you can put a nice notice there.
As research has proven, working from home has its advantages in increasing productivity. However, it is up to you to make the necessary changes and to take action to make it possible. Our strategies and tips should be your starting point.