Working remotely is a fast growing trend among companies and solopreneurs. In 2016, it was reported that 43% of employed Americans spent at least some time working remotely. With flexible scheduling and work hours, many are opting for the beneficial option as apposed to the traditional 9-5 workday in office. Here are 10 tips for working remotely so you can stay on task.
1. Have a designated workspace
It is very important that you have a specific place where you only do your work. It could be a spare room you turned into a home office, or you can book a coworking space. The idea is that you have space to spread out all of your work materials and were you can keep distractions at a minimum.
2. Make sure it is easy for clients to find you
Working remotely, whether from home or from a coworking space, means that people don’t always know how or where to reach you. By setting up a virtual office you can have an impressive address that makes you look professional, but more importantly that will make it easy for clients and vendors to find and contact you.
3. Have the right work materials
Make sure you have the materials you need to get your work done, no matter where you are in the world. Everything from monitors and laptops to office supplies such as pens and paper should be in your office. Depending on your line of work you might also consider about having a printer, envelopes, software, etc.
4. Plan ahead
Having a schedule is very important when working remotely. It ensures you get things done and helps to minimize distractions. Set small goals and deadlines to keep you motivated and prevent you from procrastinating.
5. Stay in touch with your colleagues
Sometimes, working remotely means that you’ll be keeping company to yourself. In order to not let loneliness affect your work, consider joining a coworking space and make sure you schedule in person meetings with colleagues, supervisors and clients. To make the most of your meeting time, make sure you book a meeting room.
6. Dress for the office
If you work from home you might be tempted to stay in your pajamas or lounge clothes all day. However, we recommend against it. Having designated work clothes and wearing them can help you get into the right mindset to be more productive.
7. Focus on your work
Just because you are working remotely doesn’t mean you have to manage your own mini office. You will probably be tempted to be your own receptionist or mailing room employee, but you would be wasting your time. Instead you can hire a virtual assistant and focus completely on your work.
8. Determine the end of the workday
An important part of planning ahead is to determine when your workday ends. It can be very tempting to keep checking emails even after you’ve “logged off”, but this can easily lead to burnout. Set your own schedule and stick to it.
9. Maximize your peak hours
Figure out when you feel and are your most productive, and use that time lapse to your benefit. Some people like to start working early in the morning, others prefer the late afternoon. Everybody has different times when they are most productive, it is important that you find out which one is yours.
10. Take regular breaks
You can only be focused for so long before you get exhausted. This can lead to your energy being drained, which in turn can make you more impulsive and less helpful. To prevent exhaustion it is important that you take short breaks throughout the day. Use these breaks to to stretch your legs, rest your eyes and have a glass of water.