The UK has been in Covid-19 lockdown for over a week now, and millions of businesses have enforced remote working for their employees. Given the current climate, its realistic to assume that working from home will be the new ‘norm’ for a while. And, many companies still need their staff on top form despite the global disruption. So, how do you create the right space to achieve productivity?
- Start the day right
While it’s always a good idea to eat a balanced breakfast, that’s not what we mean by starting the day right. Working from home is typically accompanied with distractions – children, needy pets or the glowing light of the fridge – and productivity is often compromised.
By structuring your whole working day at the start of it, you are more likely to stay on track. Using a notepad, segment your day into morning and afternoon (and evening, if that suits you), include your lunch and coffees breaks and meals, and any personal tasks you need to tick off. Keep the pad next to you and check it regularly to maintain discipline and stay on track!
- Equip yourself
Working from home can be very frustrating if you’re not set up right, and the right equipment can make or break productivity. The BBC quotes Sara Sutton (CEO of FlexJobs), who explains that: “not having a well-equipped home office space when people begin remote working can cause a temporary decrease in productivity”.
We can advise you on equipment for specific requirements, but there are a few essentials come to mind – the best chair you’ve got (trust us on this one), the right cable set-up, easily accessible charging points, a good headset and a second monitor. A well-organised and well-equipped ‘home office’ will give you higher levels of efficiency and lower levels of stress.
- Give everything a home
It’s easy for those important meeting notes to end up in the recycling when you work from home. Re-purpose a drawer set or even a few folders to organise any documents and give cold and hot beverages a designated space and a coaster so they are secure and out of the way: a coffee-soaked laptop will ruin your day before it has even started!
- Light up the room
Working from home offers two benefits that being office-based normally does not: having control of the light and temperature. Set up your workspace in a naturally lit area of your home: you won’t regret it. The Financial Times’ Edwin Heathcote advises that you should never rely entirely on artificial light, but when you need to, get a good, adjustable desk lamp.
- Different mindset, different space
As the pandemic continues, there are an increasing number of sources offering advice on working from home. A common tip is to pick one dedicated space in your home and stick to it. This may work for many, but for those employees who wear different hats, it could be necessary to change your workspace when you change pace.
If you have back to back meetings, a space where you can walk around with your headset is ideal. If you need to get that important customer document written, a quiet and more isolated space is required. Choosing workspaces that suit the type of work you’re doing will make you more comfortable and help your brain adapt more quickly.
Our bonus tip? Try not to set up in the kitchen. Being so close to the fridge and coffee machine could be dangerous!