Work from home / Remote work

Remote Work Best Practices

Spent the last week watching the horror show of your now remote work business unraveling right before your eyes? We get it. It’s a lot to take in and a lot to work on. We know it’s hard to excel in a new work dynamic, especially when the transition was quite unexpected. But don’t fret. If you’re new in the work from home game and haven’t quite mastered the ropes yet, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of the top rated best practices other businesses have observed that can work for you too.

Align the tech stack.

Sure, your age old systems might have worked with the office set up you’ve worked with for years, but that might not work as much now. It’s 2020 and you’re starting to explore the world of working remotely. While that means new opportunities and possible growth, that might also mean that not everyone will have access to the same software and subscriptions at home and not everyone might have been trained to perform in this new terrain. Your best bet to making this adjustment successful is to make sure that the tools you are using to perform your best work are what’s best for your setup and your new venture too.

We suggest plotting your daily tasks in a map and finding out the most efficient and convenient tools that will help you achieve your daily goals without breaking a sweat. Equip yourself with a tech stack that’s suited for your setup. Otherwise, you’re just risking gearing up for the wrong battlefield.

Follow a schedule.

Sure, we’ve all got more time; no more time wasted on long lines waiting for the bus, on commute, or on all the distractions you encounter on your way home or to work. But don’t underestimate how many things and distractions can consume you within the walls of your own home. To avoid losing track of time and potentially spending you and your colleague’s supposed work days on those shows you’ve been meaning to catch up on or on the laundry you haven’t washed for weeks, it’s important to create a schedule and stick to it.

Creating a weekly team schedule wherein tasks, deadlines, and meetings are laid out and set for everyone to access is your best bet to make the most out of the time you’ve been given. Simply using Google Calendar for your team will make a difference. With the right consistency and discipline, you’ll find that making a habit out of scheduling not only allows you to manage your time wisely, it’ll also give you that sense of control you’ve been looking for since you’ve let your social media consume you.

Continue training and briefings.

You’ve just transitioned. Remember that you’re on uncharted territory. That said, it’s important to equip your people with the right gear and the right mindset. You’re all still just getting a hang of things – maybe not yet, and you all need to grow into the environment. There’s no better way to do that than to do so with the right training and guidance.

Orient your employees about the new terrain your entering. Inform them about the landscape, the dynamics you’re expecting, and how you propose to achieve your goals and with what new tools you’ll be doing such with. Then, you can hold demos and sessions on working with your new process and test them on applications. Your employees are most open and teachable in this stage and it’s the best time to help them grow, don’t let this opportunity go to waste.

Check up on each other.

Be careful not to dehumanize your colleagues now that you only interact behind a computer screen. I know you probably think you interact with Sally no more and no less than you’ve been doing at the office, but that doesn’t mean you get a free pass at letting the work week go by with you just bombarding her with new tasks without even a proper greeting or asking how she’s been.

Losing your connection with the people you work with is cultivating a culture of apathy, distance, dehumanization, and poor teamwork. Not only will your workplace turn into a pit of empty robots, your people will be quick to lose passion in their work and trust in each other. Practice socialization, empathy, and treating each other like the humans you are. Call your colleagues on Zoom or Google Hangouts. A simple “how are you” can mean everything to your employees. It will also manifest vividly in their performance – especially if you help resolve their struggles once they’ve opened up.

Track your productivity.

It’s easy to think you’ve maximized your day and are satisfied with your work when you don’t actually know how much work you’ve done – especially when no one else is getting on your back for it or checking your progress. But, you should know better than to let your days waste away and to let your work pile up until you finally recognize how much you’ve been putting off.

Tracking and supervising the tasks you’ve successfully accomplished will not only allow you to stick to your schedule. It will also help you manage your time better and see how much you can work on on a day and push your limits further. Download apps for task and team management like Todoist – a multi-platform planner, and 24me – a more individual-oriented app that doubles as your personal assistant. At any given point, these are readily available to help you make sense out of your work. 

You might have mastered working at the office but there’s still so much to learn and try, especially now that you’ve entered a whole new environment. There are so many possibilities and there’s so much growth you can have. Start with these practices and see the improvements a few adjustments can make. Just like they said, the littlest pebble can reach the ocean floor though thousands of feet away.

Contributor:

Andrea Nalupa
Marketing Associate


Read Next: Employees on Remote Work


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