How to Achieve Success When Working From Home

In today’s world it is important to know that you have a team to back you up. From all of us at Command Prompt, we are here to help. It is our goal to help our clients, partners, and community succeed.

Originally posted at Command Prompt, Inc.

As a pioneer in building a successful employment from home culture we have moved through the trial and test phases of what does and doesn’t work when working without a central office. In an effort to help you transition with ease, we have put together a list of important things to take into consideration. 

How to achieve success when working from home: 

Set a routine and stick to it. 

  • Your work schedule shouldn’t change much. Though you theoretically have flexibility, it needs to be constrained. Your total hours working shouldn’t change.
  • Keep to a meal schedule.
  • Spend the time you would normally spend commuting with your family or doing something you enjoy in order to offset the time you are at home but in the office unavailable. 
  • When work is done, work is done. 
  • This includes a routine for your family/SO. 

Include self care within your daily routine.

  • Exercise is key to productivity. Don’t sit all day. Make sure to keep moving, whether it’s a walk (if you can), yoga, squats, etc.

Have appropriate boundaries.

  • Limit distractions.
  • Communicate clearly with your household members that from X time to X time, you are working and should not be interrupted. 
  • In the interest of family overall health it is important to be flexible and also be consistent in your expectations as you work from home. 

Try to achieve as close to your normal productive work environment as possible.

  • If you normally have face to face meetings, use technology to your advantage and continue to have them through software such as Zoom.

Be task oriented.

  • Working from home is, generally speaking, now about completing tasks efficiently and not just being in an office for 8 hours.
  • You should have actionable items, as well as an action item list for each task to help avoid getting overwhelmed. 
  • Set a to-do list of what you will accomplish with deadlines. 

Take appropriate breaks.

  • Leave the computer/house (if possible) for at least thirty minutes in the middle of the day. 
  • Don’t be afraid to take walks while on the phone (a hands free device is useful here).
  • Find someone to talk to that isn’t in your household (if possible).

Ignore your phone unless it is for work purposes. 

  • Don’t use your phone for personal reasons unless it is during scheduled breaks. 

Need help finding the right mindset? 

Dress for the part. 

  • Wear what you would wear to the office. If you wear a suit to the office, wear a suit to your home office.

Have a dedicated space.

  • Whether it’s a home office or a space at the dinner table, that space needs to be dedicated to you getting your work done. 
  • Do your best to make this comfortable. 
  • If sharing with a spouse or roommate, make sure you communicate your schedules before the work day starts and do your best to not interrupt each other.

Use a method of marking off your todo items.

  • Could be a notepad, spreadsheet, app, etc. Show yourself you are making progress.

Turn off the TV, the phone, and the news. 

  • Knowing what is going on at all times will restrict you from being able to successfully get work done.

Other helpful tips: 

Maintain healthy habits.

  • Meals, exercise, and sleep are essential for productivity, especially when stress is high and there is a lot of uncertainty. Make sure you are taking care of yourself. 
  • Go to bed at a normal time.  

Work with your team. 

  • Whether by way of project check ins, delegation, or a quick “water cooler” chat, keep in contact with those you normally work with. 
  • Communicate your tasks, plans, and roadblocks to your coworkers and managers frequently. 
  • Relying on your team is a great way to get work done in a successful way and keep you focused on your task at hand. 

When frustrated or trying to focus, remember that you have a job while many others are facing layoffs and furloughs.

  • Take a mental health break if you need one. Even 15 minutes playing with your pet or pulling weeds in the yard will unclutter your brain.