Working Remotely – how to succeed!

How do we work well remotely? (by Ash Botes)

A big proportion of the world’s workforce are now working from home, reaching record numbers. It’s now more important than ever for organisations to take advantage and optimise to create a virtual workplace for their employees. There are a plethora of tools on the market that will enable remote working. One of the biggest things for us here at Harmless is to keep our teams feeling connected and maintain their level of productivity as well as their health and wellbeing while being working so remotely from teams.

Here is something I found very interesting:

Working too much
One of the reasons many managers don’t approve of remote work is they fear employees will slack off without that physical, in-person oversight. But, in fact, the opposite tends to be the reality: remote workers are more likely to overwork. When your personal life and your work are both under the same roof, it’s harder to switch off.

How to avoid overworking
You might need to trick yourself to take breaks and set clear start and end times. Otherwise, you risk burnout.

A few things that can help:

Set appointments on your calendar for the end of the day
This will help you to get our of your home office. Maybe it’s an “appointment” to go to the gym or go grocery shopping or just take a walk around the block. Maybe it’s an appointment to read the next chapter of the book you’re currently into.

Similarly, set up reminders to take breaks
One member of our team has a recurring daily to-do list item to take a walk. Set a clock to announce the time every hour, which helps remind me to stretch and refill my water glass. In Windows, you can use Task Scheduler to set up a similar hourly reminder. Timing your day with the Pomodoro technique can help as well.

Be clear with your team on when you’re leaving
For example, make a quick announcement in Slack—and then actually shut down your computer. (I have a bad habit of saying “bye” and then sticking around for another hour.)

Create physical boundaries between you and your workspace
The best thing is if you have a dedicated office space so you can shut the office door–or even lock it, put a sign up that says Sorry, we’re closed. If you don’t have a dedicated office, even something as simple as putting your laptop out of sight when work has ended can help you avoid the temptation to log back on. Or you can try sectioning off part of a room for work so it feels like a separate space.

Turn off notifications on your phone and computer so you’re not pulled back into work after hours.

~ Ash Botes, e-Learning Service Manager


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