Now that we’re over a year into the pandemic, it’s safe to say that we’re all familiar with the flow of working from home. For better or for worse, we’ve become somewhat accustomed to our new daily routine. As new COVID cases, hospitalizations, and deaths continue to decline in the United States, true normalcy almost seems within reach. However, until then, we need to make sure that we’re optimizing our work-from-home experience and staying focused. Like we said, we’re all used to our new accommodations, but here are some suggestions you can try to really make the most out of your at-home work day as an HR manager & employee!
Perhaps the biggest downside to remote work is that it often feels like we’re living at work instead of working from home. Making sure that we carve out enough time for ourselves and non-work related activities is crucial to making the time we do spend working as productive as possible. Burnout is at an all-time high due to the lack of separation of professional and personal lives on top of the current state of the world and everything that that entails. We have other resources available on how to cope with stress and even pandemic-induced stress, if you’re looking for something more specific. All in all, the key with this one is maintaining balance within the chaos, however that may look for each and every one of us.
To prevent the day from getting away from you, set a solid routine in place so that you can hit your mark every single day! Design a routine that works best for you, from your wake up time to your morning coffee to when you sit down for work and everything up until you log off for the night. If you start getting bored with your routine, don’t be afraid to switch it up! Take breaks at new times, work in a different spot, just do something to keep things interesting. This suggestion varies depending on the person, so however this may look for you, make sure you’re optimizing productivity and discipline while also avoiding burning yourself out!
It can seem that work nowadays consists of a million different tasks, systems to utilize, and no time to organize all of the mess. Finding ways to automate tedious tasks and clerical work eliminates the extra headache while allowing you more time and mental capacity to focus on what’s important. This is where having a system that can handle the outlining of forms and workflows is key. Check out this article on the GoCo Workflows Feature! The integration of this feature has been crucial to our successful transition to remote work. It can handle practically any HR task, employee surveys and inputs, and more!
Starting your day by looking at the seemingly endless list of tasks ahead of you can be extremely daunting. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by thinking of how many things are on your agenda, so try organizing your day through prioritization instead. Take a minute to organize your tasks by urgency so that you tackle the most pressing obligations first and then you can get some leeway towards the end of your day! Obviously, timelines and deadlines factor into this, so be sure not to overlook the things you think you have a lot of time for – those deadlines sneak up on you!
Whether we’re sitting in an office or at home, spending 8+ hours fenced in can be a real downer. Try stepping out onto your patio, balcony, or an outdoor coffee place for a fresh change of scenery! Like we said before, this is a great way to switch up your work-from-home routine while being able to take in the great outdoors! All you need is a cool beverage and a stable WiFi connection!
This old trick has been around forever, but it really does work. Somehow, dressing up as if you’re going into the office and feeling good about how you look just sets the tone for a productive day. We know this is probably one of the harder suggestions since it’s so tempting to just lay in bed in your sweat pants and try to work from there, but getting properly ready and putting on an office-worthy outfit will definitely boost your proficiency while working from home! You wouldn’t want that look to go to waste, would you?
A given with working from home is that the environment is not going to be as focused and geared for work as an actual office would be. We have family, pets, sometimes friends, and other distractions. The key to working around this is finding a workplace that provides you with a distraction-free oasis to focus on what you need to get done and having the discipline to actually sit there and do what you need to do! We mentioned setting up adequate time boundaries earlier on, so be sure to take breaks and down time when you need to. That being said, make sure that the time you do spend working is optimized for maximum efficiency and productivity. Making the most out of your work time allows you to make the most out of your fun time as well.
If you’re anything like me, a messy desk leads to a messy mind. It gets hard to focus when your workspace is cluttered with other things that either aren’t relevant or could end up being distracting. Keeping your workspace clean and clutter free is a great way to set the foundation for a productive day. We recommend decluttering and making preparations for your workday the night before so that you can jump right in and optimize your time during the workday! This small extra step can go a long way in saving you some time and making you feel a little better while charging through your daily work agenda!
Working from home definitely has its pros and cons. The largest con is arguably staying motivated and keeping productivity up when there’s a million other things you could be doing. Try implementing some of these suggestions into your work-from-home experience and see how helpful they are! They’ve for sure helped us to keep going, and we hope they work just as well for you.