How to work effectively from your home? Practitioner advice and tools.

2020 had been a weird year and made some long term changes in our lives. One of them is the fact, that many companies decided to let their employees fill their tasks from home. Even though it has many good sides, it also can make you feel distracted. The possibility to prepare dinner, put in the laundry and take care of your home in general might affect your efectiveness. How to avoid it?

work at home

1. Plan ahead

Make a plan for every upcoming day and make sure to fill it. If you will know, that you have five or fifteen tasks to make, it will help you fill them without hesitation. Working without actual plan lacks the uncertainty if you will make it on time and it has a negative effect on the pace of your work. Start every business day by making a list of tasks, that had to be done. You can make it on paper or on your PC - as long as you keep checking it and crossing out the finished tasks - the form doesn't matter.

2. Keep your everyday routine

Working from home makes you want to stay in your pajamas for most of the day, doesn't it? Many professional claim, that it affects your productivity in a negative way. Try to stick to your basic routine for most of the days: take a shower, dress up, put on make up, have a healthy breakfast. This way you will stay more productive most of the time. Of course, there might be some days, when you feel a bit down or just overslept. It can happen to everyone and those days - just focus on surviving and finishing the most crucial tasks.

3. Set rules with your family

Living and working at the same place might be overwhelming at times. While your family knows (in theory), that you're working, they still might feel tempted to come into your room (kids mostly). There is a simple solution, which can fix the issue.

Use a simple markup, which will help your family members find out, if it's okay to come in, or if you can't be disturbed. You can use the hotel room tags with "come in" and "do not disturb" messages. If you have younger kids, you can make a traffic lights with them. Red light means "don't come in", yellow can stand for "only come if it's really important" and green means "you can come in".

4. Try to prepare a good working space

If you know, that you will be working from home for at least a couple of weeks or even longer - it's really important to have a good working space. Among the things you should get is a comfortable chair, ergonomic desk, which will be able to fit all your belongings.

The advices are only examplary and most basic ones. Also, try to rember about keeping in touch with your co-workers, as it might help you stay focused. If you can afford it, make a working space, where you don't rest or spend time after working hours. And, most importantly, don't beat yourself if you think you can do better: adjusting to a new situation takes some time. Good luck!

These professions are now working remotely - a list of jobs

The COVID-19 pandemic changed many things in our lives, one of the being the way we work. While medical workers faced many problems concerning the amount of patients and serious condition, most of other kind of workers were facing quite a different kind of trouble: working remotely. What professions can be done remotely and what are the biggest issues they face?

work at home

1. Customer service

It's one of the easiest jobs to be performed remotely. Workers are supposed to solve issues of the caller via phone, chat or e-mail. It can be easily done in the safety of your own house, but it's not flawless. When working from the office, many less experienced workers consult with their colleagues - even during a phone call with the customer. Obviously, it's not an option while working remotely.

2. Computer programming

Many programmers were working remotely even before the pandemic, so working in this field hasn't changed a lot when the pandemic arouse. The personal contact between workers might have gotten even smaller than before, but other than that, working from home isn't something new for programmers.

3. Corporation workers

Many corporations (related to various industries) decided to start a long term home office for the workers. As many people state, it's been hard to adjust to this kind of work for quite a while, but right now - most of the employees are content with this solution. Firstly, it saves a lot of time (when you don't have to drive to your office and come back from it everyday), but also makes most of the people more efficient. No coffee breaks or colleagues to gossip with just makes you more focused on the task at hand.

Paradoxically, the biggest issue seems to be... the lack of contact with others. Just like in the customer service jobs, also all kinds of corporate specialists tend to consult their co-workers in many subjects. However, the contact is way easier in those companies, as most of the employees don't work with an external client directly and thus - they can contact between each other via online communicators provided by the employer.

4. Teachers

For quite a long period of time, teachers in many countries around the world were working remotely. The situation is changing dynamically for the school teachers, but more and more of language teachers and tutors decide to move online. This kind of work requires a bit of reorganization (both in the way you teach and think), but can be done relatively easily. The hardest part might be to get people to talk and respond to your questions - but let's face it, it was a challenge for decades, online lessons or not.

5. Freelancers

All kinds of freelancers are obviously working remotely. This term is usually used when speaking about someone, who is self-employed, but not only. Freelancer can write texts for clients, create graphics or set up pages - write texts for clients, create graphics or set up pages. This job can be done pretty much everywhere - at home or in a cafeteria.

6. Sales

Usually, sales positions offer a flexible working hours and a possibility to work from home. Between meetings with customers and preparing offers for them, sales employees can work from home. They meet the usual issue of working remotely - communication woth co-workers. Luckily, as the experience of both employees and employers is growing every month, new contacting techniques are being implemented. Currently, many companies have programms, that allow co-workers to contact between each other not only by phone, but also communicators in oral or written form.

General issue for every kind of remote job

Mentioned professions aren't the only ones working remotely, but they represent the biggest groups of online workers. Among with the communication problems, the employees are also facing two types of issues: slow internet and power cuts. There is no general rule on how to act (i.e. should the worker make up for the time when he could not work due to the emergency disconnection of electricity?) and it's still not 100% solved.

Despite the above difficulties, most of the workers are happy working from home. Not only they save time, but can also eat a nutritious, home made meal. Remote work is also helpful, when child gets sick: parents of older children don't have to take days off or ask family members for help. Although working remotely might seem hard at first, it's a great solution for many people.

Your comment:
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2021-05-25   Linda
In the office, relationships are established between employees that foster inspiration and motivation, and a sense of community is built. Creativity and efficiency in solving tasks depend on co-presence, on opportunities to meet and also to have informal conversations.
2021-05-24   Anthony
To @Caroline The popularization of the hybrid work model is very likely. For two reasons. First, companies have learned that remote work can be effectively organized, teams work efficiently, and projects do not fall apart like houses of cards. Second, there is an opportunity to reduce many fixed costs. And this means that the office can now become a permanent fixture in our homes.
2021-05-23   Caroline
I have been working from home for a year, this job has its pros and cons. I am at home all the time, I can cook dinner, I do not waste time commuting to work? However, I miss the face-to-face conversations with co-workers. And my new clothes are in the closet because I have no place to wear them.