5 work habits for greater productivity when working from home and in the office
The pandemic has become the reason why offices in many places are operating in a limited fashion. Lower productivity among employees working from home are a chief concern both for the company's management and for the employees themselves. There are many more potential distractions at home than in the office. So how do you keep productivity high? We bring you tips based on proven techniques. They are appreciated by every employee who works from home, but also after they return to the office.
How efficiently do people work from the kitchen table, for example? Anti-pandemic restrictions have put work from home in the sights of many researchers. According to one of the latest studies, it seems that teleworking cannot perfectly replace the office yet. Managers from various fields report that their employees show, on average, only 68.3% of the productivity they can achieve in a traditional office environment.
The main reasons include administrative tasks that cannot be performed from home, either due to insufficient facilities or regulatory restrictions. Productivity is also limited by the inability to meet the team and important clients face to face. But the tendency to greater procrastination when working from home also plays a big role.
So let's take a look at a few tips to ensure that you can achieve a lot more than 68% of your normal productivity when you work from home.
1) Harder tasks first
How do you spend the first few hours of the workday? Most likely, your morning is full of e-mails and other annoying tasks that you want to cross off your list as soon as possible. But that's a mistake! Our brains work best two to four-and-a-half hours after waking up. This is an ideal time to generate creative ideas and take important steps on big tasks. So treat yourself to a healthy breakfast and then, instead of your e-mail inbox, throw yourself into the hardest work task of the day. Otherwise, you are depriving yourself of perhaps the most productive phase of the day.
2) Try Deep Work Wednesday
Does every day have to be equally productive and consist of the same activities? If you want to achieve the best results, forget about this approach. Deep Work Wednesday is the name for an easy way to redistribute work across the week for maximum productivity. Set aside one day, preferably Wednesday, right in the middle of the work week, when you limit any meetings or small tasks.
On this day, you will only focus on a big assignment that requires your full concentration for a few hours. E-mail, Slack or other ways to communicate with colleagues should remain closed most of the time. Check them only two to three times a day. This principle works best if the whole team or the whole company agrees on it.
3) Focus on the most important tasks
The Pareto Principle states that 20% of our work is responsible for 80% of the value we bring to our employer. Logically, therefore, we should pay the most attention and the greatest amount of time to this fifth of tasks. Try to find the true core of your work and drop unnecessary ballast. Among other things, it will teach you to say no to requests from colleagues that you do not have to do and do not bring you anything of value.
4) Let your mind relax
The mindfulness meditation technique is currently being studied as a tool that has the potential to reduce stress and increase happiness. It is even recommended to combat clinical depression. No wonder, then, that people who engage in mindfulness meditation also show higher productivity at work.
During the mindfulness session, you do not try to move your mind away from the reality of your body. On the contrary, the goal is to experience the current moment as much as possible. If you don't know where to start with mindfulness, try some of the videos from experts on YouTube or find an activity that you can get completely lost in for a while. Colouring books for adults work great, for example. In this way, you only need to meditate for 10 minutes a day and your mind will be much more resilient to the stress of work.
The environment in which we work has a major impact on our productivity. Properly arranged furniture, greenery and decorative elements can awaken and calm our minds. We aren't talking about feng shui magic, but about the results of professional studies, which point to the positive influence of a well-chosen office environment on employee productivity. In your home office setup, therefore, ensure at least that there is plenty of natural light, try to keep things orderly, and do not forget about natural elements (even a cactus on the desk has an effect).
Your productivity will improve, but most likely you will not be able to create the same beneficial conditions as you would in an office designed exactly according to the requirements of employees and employers.
If you are interested in learning more about what a proper modern office should look like, please contact CAPEXUS. We can design and implement a space for you created from the ground up, based on the latest information on productivity and on a thorough knowledge of your unique corporate culture.
Photos Author: Unsplash
Published: May 7, 2021