Checklist: How to Maximize Your Remote Work Environment

One study states that 77% of workers assert that they have improved productivity while working from home. So how does a team member ensure a remote situation will be successful and contribute to advancing a career?  Just check off this list. 

 

  • Define your remote workspace. What does the perfect workspace look like for you? The answer varies from person to person. Perhaps you like low lighting or some fresh air. Maybe you need a standing desk or double monitors. No matter where you are working, it is important to identify a space where you can get to business. If this place is your own home, then be sure to create a separate space that reflects your ideal work environment. This will help you focus and get you plugged into work mode. 
  • Communicate your remote needs to your superiors. If you don’t have screens or specific tools that you need, speak to your manager or the right department to see if you can borrow them. They want you to be productive from home and should be open to fulfilling your needs. 
  • Be as organized as possible. Being organized in a remote work environment means ensuring everything you could possibly need to assist with productivity is at your fingertips. 
  • Know how to easily contact your team members. Create a list with everyone’s work hours and personal cell phones to be able to easily connect with them when emergencies arise.
  • Actively participate in the company. We live in the age of tech connectivity and there is no better way to take advantage than with remote work. Join training, lunch and learns, webinars, and anything else that offers the ability for you to dial-in. Set up remote team building activities to help. 
  • Keep track of projects and time. Have a project management tool set in place to make sure all work stays on track. Make use of a time-tracking tool if your company monitors time for employees or clients. If your manager checks in, you’ll be able to easily deliver what you’ve been working long, how much time you’ve spent, and what’s in the pipeline.  
  • Check-in with managers and teammates. Consistently touch base with managers/supervisors to ensure your presence is still felt and that lack of facetime is not inhibiting contributions to the team. The same goes for your teammates — it’s easy to be the helping hand when you hear the person next to you say they can’t figure something out, yet much harder from afar. To that end, try to shoot a quick message here and there to check on workloads and see if anyone needs something they haven’t thought to ask you about.
  • Set up weekly meetings to touch base. If you don’t have weekly meetings with your coworkers to go over responsibilities and status, start setting those up so you’re on the same page and are properly scheduling assignments. 
  • Communicate any changes in schedule. Remind team members about any scheduling changes so people know where and when to find you, and make yourself fully available via phone, Skype, or instant message. Update your calendar accordingly. 

 

Make Room for Self-Care

Working remotely is ultimately what you make of it. You decide what setup works best for you and place your health and needs at the top. What can you do to maintain a professional work life from home? Here’s our take. 

 

  • Be mindful of ergonomics. A lot of employee handbooks have a section on the importance of maintaining good posture at the desk. The same goes for your work setup at home. Ensure you have a comfortable chair, standing desk if needed, and the proper height for your desk and distance of monitors. 
  • Dress the part. Numerous studies have shown that having a strong routine helps boost productivity and psychological health. Kick-off your mornings the way you would if you were to get in your car and go to work. Take a shower, do your makeup, brush your hair, shave your beard. Put on a nice outfit and dress for success. 
  • Take time for yourself. Remember to fit in a break or two! At times, because you do work remotely, you could forget to take a break or be prone to a guilty conscience and opt-out of taking lunch and breaks. Remind yourself that you are doing the work and are a vital part of the team. As long as you put in the hours and deliver the expected results, there’s plenty of room for self-care.

 

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