As the coronavirus continues to cause havoc for workers across Ireland, Moira Dunne gives her tips on how to remain productive while working from home during these difficult times.
We’ve all been taken by surprise by the events of the last week in relation to Covid-19, and it looks like most of you will be working from home over the coming weeks.
My usual tips for Working from Home don’t really apply now, so I want to share some pointers that could help people have some productive hours amid this uncertainty.
It may not be possible to work traditional 9 to 5 hours. Try working for a few hours early in the morning before everyone wakes up or later in the evening. Find the best solution for you, your work colleagues and those at home who need you.
My mantra is usually about eliminating distractions but now is a time for accepting that your house may be busy and noisy. Family members will want your attention. And they may need it too to keep their spirits up. Don’t let it become a stress. Figure out ways to work around this challenge.
Use time blocking
This technique increases your ability to focus when you do get time to work. Instead of doing a bit of everything all the time, dedicate each block of time to a specific task. Use a timer to avoid becoming engrossed in one task. Keep moving through your plan.
This technique is maximised by setting clear priorities in advance. Identify tasks you need to get done and tasks that aren’t important. You have less chance of getting sucked into those lower priority things once you have identified them. Some people call this a ‘To Don’t’ list.
Skype has long been the tool of choice for business online calls. Recently, I have been using Zoom very successfully for online coaching sessions and find it very easy to use. Here’s what you need to do:
- Login to Zoom
- Create an account (the free version does for most meetings)
- Create a meeting
- Copy the meeting link
- Send it to your participants
Your participants don’t need to have a Zoom account or even have the software on their phone or laptop. Once they click the link they can connect to your meeting. You can easily share a file which everyone can see on the screen.
Set clear priorities for others
If you are managing others remotely be clear about what they should prioritise. Set daily and weekly targets to help them focus. This will also give them a sense of accountability and achievement.
I hope you and yours stay well. If you need any specific productivity tips, you can contact Moira at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also check the resource centre on BeProductive for templates and tools.
By Moira Dunne
Published: 16 March, 2020