Working from home doesn’t have to be a pain in the neck – for you or your employer.
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Here are 17 easy tips to make sure you both get the most of of your evolving relationship, making sure you feel good and enjoy it as well as getting the job done just as effectively – or more so!
I worked from home for an IT company for 5 years, and then ran my business for another 15 from home, so I’ve been there, done that.
Some simple rules and easy changes can be just what the doctor ordered!
17 do’s and don’ts to make Working from Home more enjoyable and effective.
Do: Make a real workspace to work from. The kitchen table is the default go-to, but slumping over a laptop at the wrong height is going to get painful. Try to carve out a place you can call ‘work’. The kitchen may be the hub of activity for other people, and micro-disturbances still detract from your productivity.
Don’t: Be afraid to raise technical issues that are stopping you from working effectively. Your company will want to help you be as happy and productive as possible.
Do: Be strong with other people at your home. A sign saying “I’M AT WORK” can really help stop unwanted interruptions. You can always step away ON YOUR OWN TERMS to show some affection to your pets or housemates.
Don’t: Be afraid to get a break – just like at work you may have walked up and down floors to meet colleagues. Go to lunch, or pop out. Your body needs to move! How about a nice lunchtime stroll? Or half an hour of you-tube yoga?
Do: Set clear times for office and for home. Just because you can check your emails at 11pm doesn’t mean you should! Working from Home doesn’t Mean Turning Your Home into your Work!
Don’t: Treat working from home as a chance to do less and get away with it!
Do: Be sure to have a good supply of tea, coffee, and healthy snacks like fruit and nuts to keep you going.
Don’t: Sit for too long. Sitting well when you do will help your stamina. Try setting an alarm to remind you to take frequent movement breaks.
Do: Try a makeshift standing desk for working at home – they are easy to make in a corner and can give your derriere a break for an hour or so.
Don’t: Be tempted to check your social media. It’s a massive time-destroyer and will savage your productivity.
Do: Step away from your workspace for eating. No-one needs noodles in their keyboard. No-one!
Don’t: Get dehydrated. Derek from accounts might not be offering you hot drinks, but there’s no reason you shouldn’t get up off that chair and make your own.
Do: Gaze out of the window and rest your eyes. If working from home means having less than a meter between you and a wall then it’s going to hurt your eyes. Take phone calls standing up, and take a nosy at your neighbours while you do ?
Don’t: Sit there in your dressing gown / underpants. Getting dressed for work helps you get into the mindset. And getting out of your work clothes are the end of your working day helps put a close to work-related thoughts.
Do: Call up co-workers and speak in person. They’ll be glad to hear from you and the companionship will stop you feeling lonely working from home
Don’t: Be afraid to set expectations. If a client or a boss is going to have to wait a little longer for some work, let them know. They would much rather have a correct expectation set. Don’t disappoint them with missed deadlines, or unanswered calls.
Do: Set a schedule and stick to it. Schedule breaks as well as tasks, and don’t be afraid to take them.
Do: Take an online training to have good posture at your home-office.
Your ergnomics assessor is unlikely to get you set up well at home, and you may not have the right computer setup to make work easy on your posture, neck, shoulders and back. My 5-star online video courses show you how to sit well, in just half an hour. Two ways to buy:
There’s one for you to get for yourself here.
Or this one for your company to buy for you here.
And what better time to take a course like this than when you’re at home!
If your posture is poor or getting worse, be sure to check out our 5 best ways to fix your posture working from home.