More and more businesses are allowing and encouraging their team members to work remotely. With the ever-increasing costs of office space and brick and mortar facilities and the explosion of new technologies to keep teams connected, it is often an advantage to work from home rather than commute to the office.
But that doesn’t mean that there has been a relaxation in the expectations or demands placed on remote workers. In fact, it could be argued that with the added flexibility, there is an expectation that MORE would be accomplished by those who work remotely. So how can someone maximize their efficiency and productivity while not being under the watchful eye of their employer? Here are three (3) simple tips that you can use:
Schedule Weekly Video Conference Check Ins
While there are real benefits to working remotely, there are also greater risks. One significant risk is the notion of being “out of sight – out of mind”. In many cases, your leader or boss won’t put the demand or expectation on you to “check in” regularly, but if you want to appear more engaged and truly be more engaged in the business, you will request and set up a weekly check in routine.
I highly recommend that you make this a set day/time so that you can build your schedule around it. Don’t allow it to be flexible or it is very likely that it will be missed more often than held. You don’t want that to happen!
There are two specific benefits from requesting a weekly videoconference with your boss. 1) You will be more tuned into any changes in strategy or shifts in priorities occurring in the business. By staying connected on a regular basis, you will be informed as if you were working in the office, and 2) You will be able to demonstrate your value on an ongoing basis and set yourself apart from fellow co-workers who may not be checking in as often. By sharing your progress with your boss regularly you will be viewed as being more productive and engaged.
Work in 60 – 90 Minute Sprints
This tip works whether you are working remotely or in an office, but it is a powerful way to accomplish far more than you can imagine. Think about “sprinting” several times each day rather than just slogging it out trying to get work done.
Set a timer for 60-90 minutes (not longer), turn off your distractions (phone, email, social media, etc.) and work on one specific assignment or task for that sprint period. Don’t multi-task. Focus! One task. One priority. One deliverable.
At the end of the sprint period, get up from your work area, and go for a walk. Take a break. Get outdoors. Shake it off. Clear your head and spend 15-20 minutes not thinking about your work.
Then if you do need to check in on voicemails or emails or whatever, do it – but limit your time to 30 minutes or so. Once you’ve cleared the decks of urgent calls or messages, repeat the spring process again.
I’ve found that working this way you can complete 4 or 5 sprint session each day and you will be amazed at the amount of work you can accomplish when you focus and sprint!
Tackle the Biggest Challenge First
Often times we try to accomplish many of the smaller items on our do-to list just so that we have the sense of removing them from the list. But often we avoid doing the BIG things until we get late in the day and then we just don’t have the motivation to get started.
So, because the assignment is so big, we tell ourselves we’ll get started tomorrow. But then tomorrow comes and we get seduced into knocking off several more small items to get some “quick wins” and we fall into the same trap day after day.
That’s why you need to start with the biggest, most difficult challenge early in the day when you have the most determination and will power. Will power fades as we go through the day. It’s been proven time and time again. So work in such a way as to take advantage of your highest will power time, which is normally in the morning when we are more fresh and ready for anything!
Start with these three tips in mind and you’ll be on the path to being the most productive and efficient remote employee your boss have ever known! Have fun, enjoy the ride! Let me know if I can help!
Originally published on September 15, 2017 by SpeakerMatch Speakers Bureau