Be the best from anywhere: Three tips for remote working success

In May 2018, CNBC reported that 70 percent of people around the globe work remotely at least one day a week. Statistics like that don’t indicate a passing trend – they’re highlighting a new model in the workforce. Like working in an office, remote working has its positive and negative aspects. You may find it easier to focus without distractions at home – unless the ladies from The View start to call your name. Remote working is a great benefit that keeps employee satisfaction high, and that doesn’t have to come at the expense of productivity. Below are a few tips to impart to your employees (or remember yourself!) to create the best remote work experience possible:

  1. Find your designated “work place”: If you know you’ll be working remotely on a regular basis, it is always a good best practice to have your own work area in your home. The kitchen or dining room is an okay place to start, but once it’s time to eat, it will be difficult to continuously pack and repack your work materials. And the siren song of the refrigerator will be tough to tune out when the afternoon slump hits. Consider converting a spare bedroom to an office or taking over the family computer desk as your workspace. You’ll instantly get into the right mindset when you walk in the door: When you’re here, you are working.

Other great work places can be found outside of your home, too, especially if you need a change in scenery or don’t want to be cooped inside all day. Forget the basic coffee shop you normally go to and choose the library, museum or even a hotel lobby. No matter where you are, just know that a good work space involves somewhere quiet where you can connect to the internet and get work done.

  1. Embrace collaboration with new tech: Sometimes when you get into the groove of working remotely, you might feel a bit disconnected from your colleagues (and even a little lonely). Loneliness can impact your productivity and motivation to work. Although it is easier to have casual conversations in-person with your co-workers, don’t forget to reach out throughout the day and stay connected with your team, even when you’re remote.

Using instant messaging tools like Slack or Skype for Business can make for quick and easy conversations throughout the day. These tools can also be used for brainstorms and collaborations across different locations to bring new strategies and different ideas to the table. When you aren’t physically with your team, it is more important than ever to show you’re being a team player and staying involved in the everyday when you’re not there.

  1. Remember to take breaks: Transitioning to and from your office and remote work schedule can be tough. A common struggle is learning to have a healthy work-life balance. Usually when people work remotely, it is easier to get an earlier start to the day, but taking breaks and ending right at the close of business might be more of a struggle. Many remote workers are guilty of working longer hours. When you’re in the office, it is easier for you to visually see when your co-workers would grab lunch, take a small break to start up a conversation or head home for the day. When these things occur, it reminds you that you should probably eat lunch or go on a quick walk to relax. Taking breaks throughout the day can help better your thinking process and keep your mind refreshed. Lunch breaks are important and small breaks throughout the day will keep you relaxed, avoid becoming distracted and help break up the day a little easier.

 Try setting a timer that goes off every few hours to remind you to take a break, even if it means getting up and stretching or grabbing a cup of coffee. You can also block off time on your calendar and go to the gym during your lunch break if you need a change of scenery and need a quick energy pick me up.

Another common remote work struggle is mixing your work with home life. When you’re working at home, it can be easy to think, “I can work on this all night” because you’re already set up, in the mode and ready to go. While it can be stressful knowing you might not finish a certain task at the end of the day – and working late every now and then is great – it’s very easy to make longer hours a bad habit when you’re home.

If you’re worried about not finishing all your tasks by the end of the day, consider creating a to-do list and reorganizing your tasks by priority. The timer on your phone can help you keep track of how long you’ve been working on a specific project and when it might be time to shift gears and work on something else to get through all your tasks.

CTA: Looking for more tips about blending your personal and professional live? Check out our blog on maintaining a healthy work-life balance in the PR world