Did you know that working from home has resulted in 28 extra hours of monthly overtime since the lockdown started? That is roughly four days’ worth of work and time that you’ll never get back.
It seems that remote work is overworking everyone, bosses and employees alike. The truth is that the many advantages of working from home can only be experienced when you’re able to create a balance between household demands and the pressures of running a business. If you are a business owner exploring a work-from-home setup, you may need to build a few good habits to maximize the power of remote work.
Start with Your Own Workspace
In a world where a pandemic is crippling the economy and businesses are struggling to keep up, you can’t afford to work in poor conditions that can wreak havoc on your deadlines and goals. You need a workspace that can meet your level of professionalism, dedication, and leadership.
There is a wide range of home office design inspirations you can find online. They’re as diverse as various tastes and creativity allow, but the common variable is how these designs can contribute to your focus and productivity so that you can yield effective results. Here two essential tips you can use:
1. Opt for ergonomics
Start your home office setup by choosing ergonomic furniture, which is designed to sustain hours of work and support functionality and comfort. Imagine always having to get up from a bad chair, suffer from back pain, and lose focus on the task at hand.
2. Embrace natural light
Lighting plays an important role, too. Proper window installation can help bring in natural light that can boost the mood and energy, sync your circadian rhythm, protect your sight from eye strain, and improve the overall atmosphere of your home office. In addition, good lighting actually decreases errors up to 60 percent, according to research. If you need to work at night, selecting cool lighting fixtures that don’t hurt the eyes is also a smart way to go.
Whatever equipment and furniture you choose, don’t forget to keep clutter at bay so that you can have plenty of creative space to improve your work output. Remember that a happy boss can make a happy team. If you have a workspace you’re truly comfortable with, it will show.
Just because you can now access your office anytime doesn’t mean that you need to work all day. Work-life balance is always important for your physical, emotional, and mental well-being. If you find yourself working longer hours than necessary, you may need to take a long hard look at how you manage your time.
1. Create a clear schedule
According to a recent survey, 54 percent of parents are having a difficult time balancing demands in the household while working from home.
The truth is that with plenty of chores begging to be done at home, you may be multitasking more frequently than you should. However, multitasking doesn’t always work well. To avoid getting yourself into this situation, make a solid plan to work only during certain hours of the day.
For instance, if errands and chores often materialize at midday, it’s best to work a few hours in the early morning and in the afternoon. That way, you can focus on work without having to sacrifice time for essential household tasks.
2. Inform your family and coworkers
Now that you have set your schedule, let others know about it. Having a clear idea when you’re available or not can help your chances of others respecting your boundaries. That said, it may take some time for family members to adjust to the notion that although you’re physically present, they can’t bother you during your work hours. Similarly, coworkers and clients should also know when you can talk to them and arrange distraction-free meetings.
3. Stay away from your personal social media
More than anything else, don’t let social media get in the way of work. If other people are beginning to respect your boundaries, it’s only fair that you also proactively stay away from distractions.
It’s fine to check on your business page to keep tabs on how well your social media marketing strategy is working. But you need to avoid checking for personal messages during your work hours. Similarly, don’t work with your entertainment gadgets on. Instead, take a timed break.
The Bottom Line: Feeling Right at Home
Less commute, more flexibility. Working from home has endless perks, but it can also present new challenges, especially for business owners. Establishing a clutter-free, distraction-proof workspace and creating proper boundaries can help you enjoy better productivity and greater focus on your business growth without the risk of overfatigue. Remember that working harder and longer doesn’t always guarantee excellent results—working smart does.