Many school professionals are trading in their brick and mortar positions for a work-from-home opportunity. Giving up the daily commute and doing their job from the comfort of their own home helps to reduce stress and better manage a balance between work and life. But can you stay efficient when working from home? Surprisingly, the answer is yes. In fact, a two-year study from Stanford showed that working from home helped improve employee productivity. For education professionals transitioning to the work-from-home platform, check out the following tips to help promote efficiency and productivity when working from home.
Create a Designated Workspace
When it comes to working from home, the most important thing is your workspace. The comforts of home, such as your couch, television, and a fully stocked kitchen, are great for relaxation but can provide distractions when it comes to clocking in. For this reason, creating a dedicated work area is essential. A small room, or even a section of the room, dedicated solely to work, is the perfect place to start. Set this area up so that you are comfortable and have everything you need. Be sure to minimize distractions, such as the television or family members. Having an office with a door allows you privacy to work during the day, but also allows you to close the door at the end of the day and leave work behind you.
As a teleservice education professional with Soliant, chances are your workplace will become your classroom. Keep this in mind when planning your workspace. Things that may not be distracting to you may be distracting to your students.
Stick to a Routine
Working from home allows you to give up your morning commute, but you shouldn’t give up your morning routine. While you may be able to get a few extra minutes of sleep in the morning, setting a regular alarm and getting up at the same time every workday is essential. Humans are creatures of habit and a regular morning routine can make all the difference. A routine that establishes set work hours and a set schedule helps you manage your time and stay efficient when working from home.
Plan Out Your Day
Creating a to-do list or a scheduled plan of action for your day helps to promote daily efficiency when working from home. Whether you simply create a list of tasks to do during a work session or create a structured daily schedule, this planned structure helps you stay on task and avoid possible distractions. You can choose to do this at the end of your day so that you start the following day with a plan or a schedule. In contrast, you can create your plan in the morning as you enjoy your coffee. While things will often come up that require a change in direction, such as an unplanned meeting or new deadline, having a plan for your day helps keep you on track and focused. This helps promote efficiency and helps you make your weekly deadlines and obligations.
For education professionals, a regular plan is not only essential for you, but also for your students. Having a set schedule for both classroom activities as well as one-on-one instruction sessions is essential for both your success and that of your students.
Maintaining Efficiency and Productivity
While an office space and daily routine are the key components to address when you start working from home, theses additional tips can help you stay productive and successful. They include:
Take Regular Breaks
When working at a traditional brick and mortar job, breaks are something most employees look forward to in order to break up the day. While they may not seem as important when working from home, the truth is, they are. Taking regular breaks throughout the day significantly improve productivity levels and help you maintain your focus. Whether it is a simple walk outside, an afternoon tea on the porch or a phone call with a friend, a regular break gives you time away from the screen and allows our brain and body time to relax.
When working from home, distractions such as televisions or your favorite hobby items can often tempt you. This can reduce your productivity and get in the way of your work-from-home success. When creating your office space, make sure to remove any possible distractions. This includes distractions for you, your clients, or your students.
Many of your family and friends may not understand that working from home means you are working, just the same as if you were at a traditional job. They may see the fact that you are home and assume you are available at any time. Set boundaries with friends and family so they know when your work hours are and that you are not available during these times. If you have children at home, make sure they understand that you are working or that you have help at home when needed.
Avoid Feelings of Isolation
While the Stanford study showed that working from home increases productivity, it also increases isolation. This isolation can be the main reason people don’t succeed when it comes to working from home. These tips can help to combat isolation and increase work-from-home productivity:
Leave Your Home Regularly
Working from home every day can become very self-isolating but getting out on a regular basis can help. Instead of making your own lunch at home, got out for lunch a few days a week. Take your laptop and spend your morning working from the local coffee shop for a change. If those options aren’t available, stepping outside for a walk, riding your bike, or playing with your pet can even help.
Socialize with Friends and Coworkers
Getting out on a regular basis with friends and coworkers is also a great way to combat any feelings of isolation. If you arent capable to meet with your colleagues and friends in person, consider using online meeting software. It’s also important that you avoid discussing work during online meetings so the chat feels more personable.
While working from home gives you more freedom and a better balance between work and life, it can be difficult to stay on task and reduce the feelings of isolation. Following these tips can help you increase your productivity and see success when working from home. To learn more about working from home or how Soliant can help you, contact us today.
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