TechsPlace | The State of Remote Work annual report for 2019 presented by Buffer shows that 99% of respondents said they’ve liked to work outside the in-office setting at least some of the time for the remainder of their work years.
However, the thing is that remote work is not as easy to carry through as some think it is. For years, it’s been out of reach for many and was kind of romanticized. Since government units around the world are encouraging social distancing, most companies no longer have much of a choice about the matter. Remote work is not a thing of the future anymore. Many of us have been forced to face it right now due to the home quarantine regulations to keep citizens safe from the ongoing pandemic.
The change from an in-office to a remote position was sudden and unanticipated for most people. You might not have had time to learn about the challenges you’ll face and prepare for it.
Don’t worry. In this guide, we will share some useful insights that will help you take on remote work like a champ. You, too, can become a remote work ninja with our tips! Get your tasks done with ease, collaborate, and communicate effectively with your team, and make the most out of every workday.
What Is Remote Work?
Remote work is any part-time or full-time job or project you do without getting an office space in a company. This means that you can work from home, while traveling, in a coffee shop, or wherever else you like.
As long as you have your device (tablet, smartphone, desktop, or laptop), a good Internet connection, and a handful of the basic remote-working tools, such as Slack, DropBox, Traqq, and a few others, then you’re good to go.
Useful Tips for Efficient Remote Working
There are some habits and strategies you need to adopt if you want to be productive while working remotely:
- Adopt a Routine and Have a Clear Work Schedule
A daily routine and well-planned work schedule give your day structure and ensure you do things at the right time. You will never miss a deadline. Without a healthy routine and work schedule, you might keep your tasks up in the air. Worse, you might succumb to the other extreme, which is working too much and neglecting to take care of yourself.
- Create a Workspace
Setting up a workspace is advisable when working from home. Don’t work on the sitting room couch today and on the dining table tomorrow. A dedicated workspace helps you tune in and focus once it’s go-time.
Always stay in touch with your team. Do not hesitate to ask questions if there is something you don’t understand about your task. Make sure that you are easily reachable. Moreover, promptly respond to messages.
It also helps to engage in informal conversations with coworkers and managers. This way, you keep an ear on the ground about the goings-on in the firm and in your industry. You will know when an opportunity arises and easily take advantage of it.
- Block Out Distractions
Working online means you might constantly experience context switching, and that has a huge impact on your productivity. Put your phone on airplane mode or use certain tools to prevent you from visiting a website or opening an app that will constitute a distraction during work hours.
- Take Regular Breaks
To avoid getting stressed, take a few minutes every hour to stretch and relax a little. Have lunch at the right time, and maybe take a nap. You do your best work when you give your brain some rest.
- Have a Backup Plan Against Tech Difficulties
You might be in the middle of an important assignment or about to join a meeting on a virtual conferencing platform, such as Zoom or Google Meet when your Internet connection fails, or your computer suddenly hangs or reboots to install new updates. Remote work is dependent on technology and the Internet. When there is an issue with any of these, you won’t be able to work, communicate, or collaborate.
A good way to overcome such challenges is always to have a backup plan. Have another PC that you can use in case the other one malfunctions. Find a place that has steady Wi-Fi that you can go to when the need arises.
- Curb Distractions
When working remotely, there are a bunch of things that are more interesting than work that you would rather do. Since there’s nobody around to reprimand you when you use work hours to watch a movie, play games, go on Facebook, or browse videos on YouTube, you might fail to use your day productively.
A good way to overcome this would be to visit a cafe when you are not feeling particularly motivated to get things done. You could also join a coworking space.
Some managers use time tracking tools, such as Traqq, to monitor remote employee productivity during each workday. A time tracker with screenshots allows them to see the website or apps a remote worker is using a particular point of time, as well as what they are working on. So, you won’t have room to mismanage work hours. The increasing rate at which companies are adopting remote work has given rise to the creation and adoption of various useful technologies.
- Combat Loneliness
While in-office workers get to interact face-to-face, enjoy various team-building activities, and even get to hang out and have fun after the day is done, remote workers are often confronted with bouts of isolation and loneliness. You might never get to meet your co-workers in person.
For many people, especially introverts, their social life might take a big hit, and it could be a very long time before they ever have any meaningful in-person human interaction.
To combat this problem, leave the house as often as you can. Make a lunch or dinner date with a friend or family member now and then, take your bicycle out for a spin, join a yoga class, walk your dog – anything at all to ensure that you spend time with friends and family or meet new people.
Remote work can be challenging for first-timers. However, our tips can help you power through your tasks like a pro – or even better, like a ninja!