For individuals used to heading to the office every day, adjusting to a remote job can take effort. Time management may be a struggle, as it’s easy to get distracted in familiar surroundings. However, there are ways to improve. Just like you can learn how to set virtual background in Teams, you can boost productivity with the following time management tips.
Your single greatest tool when working from home is routine. Routines help you clearly separate working hours and recreation time, establishing a healthy work-life balance.
One of the best ways to create a routine is to make a schedule. Block scheduling is particularly effective, as it ensures you devote an appropriate amount of time to each of your responsibilities. You can write your schedule in a physical planner or set timers in a digital calendar.
While creating your schedule, don’t forget to include breaks. Your brain and body need time to recover after focusing on a task for an extended amount of time. To optimize your productivity, work for hour-long blocks broken up with 15-minute breaks.
Distractions abound no matter where you are (especially if you have constant access to the internet), but they can be especially problematic at home. To limit distractions, create a quiet place where you can work undisturbed. A home office with a door is ideal, but you can also use a kitchen nook or the living room corner if you have to.
If you live in a noisy space, consider getting noise-canceling headphones. These eliminate background sounds that can get under your skin, such as buzzing lights and traffic noise.
While some forms of technology can distract you, others can help you stay on task. Just like you use a Google Meet background to keep your presentation professional, you can utilize programs to increase efficiency and track progress.
Project management software is one of the most useful programs for remote workers, especially those on a team. This software allows everyone to see the following:
- Who is responsible for which tasks
- Upcoming deadlines
- Information about the project
Since everything is in one place, you don’t have to waste time looking through multiple programs for updates.
You can also use time management programs to track how long you spend on various tasks. Doing so lets you identify areas of waste and come up with solutions. For example, if it takes you half an hour to clear your inbox, a virtual assistant or automatic sorting program may save you time.
Create a Plan
To get the most done each day, create a to-do list. Place top-priority items at the top to ensure you meet deadlines and include long-term projects at the bottom. You may also want to put harder tasks near the top of your list to avoid procrastinating.
Good time management means more time for important projects and even little details that improve your work. For example, you can spare 10 minutes to look through the best Microsoft Teams backgrounds and find something that brings you joy. With your new habits set, you can expect greater productivity and benefits.