We may cheer not having to face the peak hour commute, but how on earth do we navigate our new workday? Well, without any clear answer as to when offices around the country will be fully functioning again, we may be working from the comfort of our own home – or couch – for some time. Let’s face it - our daily routines are out the window. No matter how strong our work ethic may be, one of the biggest concerns about working remotely, is accountability. It can be difficult to feel motivated when everything feels so uncertain. So, we’ve compiled some ideas which we hope will help you keep yourself accountable.
Work business hours
Wake up at the same time. Get to "work" at the same time and clock off at the same time. Have lunch at the same time and take breaks at the same time -just as you would at work. Routine is everything.
Separate your workplace from your home
There’s a danger that you will never turn on or never turn off unless you create clear boundaries between work and home. Avoid working in your bedroom if you can, as that should remain a place for relaxation.
Create a routine
If you’re asking yourself what you could be doing to make your workday a little easier, perhaps creating a routine will help you take control of your schedule. If you know you’re most productive at a certain time of the day, block out your calendar for tasks that take a little more brain power. Having a routine in place can ensure that you’ll be performing at your best and delivering on your promises.
There are pros and cons to working from home. The disadvantages are the distractions all around us – the television, a short stroll to the fridge, social media, a cosy couch or attention seeking children. It’s often easier said than done but try to eliminate all distractions to stay focused on the task at hand.
Set goals and deadlines
Set yourself a daily list and stick to it. Never underestimate the power of the ‘to-do list’. It might seem painfully simple but actually putting pen to paper to jot down the most pressing priorities of your day will help you set goals and remain focused. When a task lands on your to-do list, manage your time and plan your week by creating deadlines for each job. This way, you can effectively handle your workload and count on yourself to deliver the goods.
A helpful way to stay on track and keep on top of your goals is to have regular check-ins with your manager or direct report. Both one-on-one and team check-ins allow you and your colleagues to keep communication lines open and connect on work you’ve completed, discuss projects in the pipeline and examine the progress you’re making towards the goals and deadlines you’ve set.
Use tools to your advantage
Establish accountability – and credibility – by using tools to help you and your entire team. Tools such as Asana, Slack and Monday not only keep everyone organised and connected, they also assist in managing the workflow of larger projects while keeping remote teams closely aligned – no matter where you’re working from.
Examine your work
Take the time to step away from your computer, give yourself a break, and then reassess whether the work you’ve produced lives up to your standards. Taking accountability for your effort requires honesty and self-awareness, so ask yourself if you’re truly proud of what you’ve created. Whether you’re satisfied, or you aren’t, having an authentic opinion will solidify the quality of your work and prove if you’re really giving 100 per cent of your energy or just cruising along.
Remember we are all in this together and this may go on for a while. Most importantly, stay safe and follow all the instructions shared by the health experts.