Everyone wants to work from home, surely? No more getting up at the crack of dawn, spending hours on the train or stuck in a traffic jam. No need to apply full make-up, wear smart clothes and be immaculately turned out. Instead, you can start and finish work when you want, wear your pyjamas and be hugely productive, because there are no office distractions and no meetings about meetings.
Well, the truth is, working from home does eliminate commuting time and it does give you flexibility. So you can do the school run, drop in your child’s reading book to school (because they forgot it AGAIN!) and take a break whenever you want or need to. There is no chit chat at the water cooler and no “can you just….” from colleagues and managers.
But, on the flip side, it can be quite lonely and is not always as productive as you might think. You suddenly find you miss that office banter and that 30 minutes of uninterrupted guilt-free reading time on the train.
So, how do you make working from home enjoyable and productive? Here’s a few of our top tips to get you started.
Create yourself a lovely space to work in. You may not have the space to have a dedicated office but even if it’s just a corner of a room, make it a pleasant place to be. Clear the clutter, organise, have a great chair, put flowers on your desk and make it somewhere you want to be.
Set A Routine
Routine is important; it helps us get in the right mind-set. Depending on what work you’re doing, your work routine might start at 7am or 10am. Whichever it is, set it and try to stick to it. If you don’t and end up working sporadically during the day and late into the night, you’ll go to bed shattered, feeling as though you’ve worked for 15 hours. Use online tools to stay organised such as Trello or Asana. Want to be even more organised, these tools allow for team collaboration too!
Change Of Scene
Take yourself off to a coffee shop regularly or even better, a co-working space. This gives you that all important change of scene and helps you to mix with other people. Look for co-working spaces online.
Ignore the dishwasher, the unmade beds and the piles of clean washing that need putting away. That can all wait until ‘after work’. Just because you’re not in the office doesn’t mean you’re not working. You wouldn’t be able to put the clean washing away at 11am if you were in the office – same rules apply.
You may also find you look at social media a LOT – it’s the biggest time-waster of all. Turn off notifications and set times each day when you allow yourself to look at it.
Keep up to date with what’s happening in your industry, join networking groups, go to events and keep in touch with old colleagues. Build yourself a network. Make sure you are familiar with whichever team collaboration tools your company use... and use it.
Take a break
It can be all too easy to stay indoors for 24 hours, so make sure you take breaks. Go for a walk or run (if that’s what you’re into) and get the endorphins going. Sometimes, there’s nothing like a bit of air to get the ideas going.
Make it work for you
The best thing about working from home, is that you can make it work for you. You can build your own environment and find the right routine that works for you.
Take a look at our latest working from home jobs.