Work-from-home (WFH) is the new normal for most employees, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. While it seems convenient and easy to adopt, one can get easily distracted by their children playing around, annoyed pets, or a simple doorbell. People with existing physical ailments are likely to suffer more because of this new sedentary lifestyle. Overall, WFH has both pros and cons. And in this article, we are trying to think of ideas that will offset the negative as much as possible, making WFH a more pleasant experience for rapid adjustment.
Please note that these suggestions are based on practical experiences. If there’s any health concern and think that conflicts with our advice, please consult with your physician for an alternative. Our objective is to make your work-from-home experience a great one.
Create a Stable Work Routine
Just like how you would organize your day and time in your office environment, organize your work-from-home routine in the same fashion. Clearly state your working hours, take a lunch, walk-around, or recharge break in between. Stick to this routine daily, and you’ll be surprised at how productive you can be even while working from home.
According to Nettie Owens, a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization and founder of Momentum Millionaire Network, consider the series of distractions you might encounter during your work hours and find a way to eliminate or work around them. For instance, if the flower pot on your work table will be a distraction, then place it somewhere else once it’s your work time.
Walk. Walk. Walk
According to Nilofer Merchant, a business innovator, if you Got a Meeting? Take a Walk.
In her TED Talk, Nilofer says, “What you’re doing, right now, at this very moment, is killing you. More than cars or the Internet or even that little mobile device we keep talking about, the technology you’re using the most almost every day is this, your tush. Nowadays people are sitting 9.3 hours a day, which is more than we’re sleeping, at 7.7 hours. Sitting is so incredibly prevalent, we don’t even question how much we’re doing it, and because everyone else is doing it, it doesn’t even occur to us that it’s not okay. In that way, sitting has become the smoking of our generation.”
So, just because you are working from home doesn’t mean you have to be in front of your computer from start to finish of your working hours.
Invest in Ergonomic Work-from-Home
In addition to the above suggestion, we recommend you get an ergonomically designed setup. Your usual office setup at home helps you sustain your productivity in good health. How you set up space and work has a significant impact on maintaining your body posture and reducing the chances of bone and tissue inflammation. The University of Berkley has some great suggestions for you to follow so that you invest in an ergonomic setup judiciously.
Streamline Technical Support
Working from home means you have to merge all your work apps on several devices to keep you connected on all ends. While some professionals can expertly handle everything via emails, having a project management system helps virtual teams organize documents and tasks so that collaboration gets streamlined.
Some of the best WFH tools are Slack for communication; Zoom for video conferencing; GitHub for software development; Canva for design; Google Drive for file management; and Asana for project management. Installing these apps is very simple, and for demonstration, you always have the organization provide you the necessary support.
Get in a ROWE for Work-from-Home
In ROWE, employees can work whenever and wherever they want as long as their work gets done. ROWE values delivering results over face time at work. “Job performance is evaluated solely on the basis of whether the necessary results are achieved by employees, not whether they’ve put in ‘face-time’ at the office” (Colquitt, LePine, & Wesson, 2015, p. 155).
The CEO of Precision Nutrition, online nutrition, and healthy lifestyle coaching and Certification Company, Tim Jones, advises that as a WFH employee, one must adopt the “results-only work environment” mindset (ROWE mindset). How you choose to organize your WFH schedule isn’t what concerns your employees. Just stay productive and drive in results, and you are good to go.
Set a Zero-based Calendar
WFH can be overwhelming because there is this interior guilt conscience, assuming what if the employer doubts my effectiveness? And we are continually trying to do more work in less time, overwhelming our health and compromising the quality of the work. Here’s a zero-based calendar that takes charge of this. A zero-based schedule is a reminder of activity time-slots within the working window to stay in control of the time we spend.
Allen Brouwer and Cathryn Lavery initiated this concept. It merely translates into strategically planning every second of your time for increased productivity in your endeavor. According to Melanie Deziel, a professional speaker and consultant, “a zero-based calendar helps you manage your tasks more efficiently because you understand how much time they will take.”
In conclusion, no matter how busy your work-from-home schedule gets, how much you love what you do, you must ensure you make time to balance other aspects of your life