Tips for Working More Productively From Home
Working from home is becoming ever-more popular in the American workplace. 43% of American workers said they worked from their home at some point in their professional career. Among this group of workers is an exclusive niche that operates solely from their homes, especially entrepreneurs and those managing new startups.
Employees are drawn to working at home because it is convenient to avoid commuting long distances and provides comfort only one’s home can offer. The home is also the center of our entertainment, sleep, and virtually every other distraction we encounter. With so many distractions easily accessible in the home, it is easy to creep into unproductive uses of precious time.
It’s impossible to be completely efficient even if you have become a master of time management. These five tips will help you feel more in control of your workday at home and help you become more efficient and effective in your profession, as they have helped me while running my Kyani business from home.
Decide which hours are most productive for your work
Some people feel more capable and productive in the morning while others feel so at night. By identifying when you are the most productive you can focus on completing your most important assignments and tasks during those powerhouse hours. Recognizing this minor change in the way you work at different times during the day will ensure you use your time wisely and focus your energy where it is most needed and most effective.
Make a list of small, simple tasks to complete throughout the day
Compile a list of small tasks that will take you no more than 15 minutes to complete and keep them in mind throughout the day. Whenever you have a few minutes to spare in the workday, be sure to complete these tasks to build confidence and use the time that would otherwise be wasted. If you find yourself with an extra 15 minutes before a conference call, take advantage of the time you have and tackle an assignment on the list. Making use of every minute of the day will make you far more effective than you would be otherwise.
Understand how long each of your tasks will take
Accurately approximating the time it will take to complete each of your tasks is key to mastering time management. As you accomplish each of your routine tasks, be sure to take note of how long each of them takes. For instance, let’s say you tell a client Task A and Task B will take 24 hours to complete. You estimate it will take 5 hours to complete Task A and Task B will take 1 hour. Turns out Task A takes 7 hours to complete. Because of this underestimation, you will have to work longer than you had anticipated, throwing off your work schedule. This is all easily avoidable if you understand how long each of your tasks will take. Moral of the story: Always give yourself a little extra time to complete your tasks.
Use the available time-management apps
Smartphones and tablets have simple, often-times free, access to time-management apps. If you have a procrastination problem, be sure to disable alerts and easy access to Facebook, Instagram, and any other social media or news sites that may pull your attention away from your work.
Compile to-do lists in preparation for the workday
The great majority of successful people who work from home will start of their days by putting together an all-encompassing list of things that need to be accomplished. Make lists of things that need to be done for work and also things that need to be done around the home. Separate these tasks from your work assignments so you don’t bounce back and forth between work and chores. Some might say this conserves time, but more often than not it keeps you from getting into the work groove.