Work From Home Like a Boss

For some, working from home is an entirely new experience. An uncharted territory that seemingly knows no bounds (or boundaries), the spaces in your home are usually left for rest and relaxation. However, with the shelter-in-place still intact, it has left nearly all of Chicago with only that option.

Despite concerns over the unknown, there are and have been thousands of individuals who work from home every single day without despair. The secrets they harness for ensuring the balance of work/life while also managing to work from home like a boss is no longer a secret. In fact, there are myriads of digital platforms and adaptations one can make to ensure you work more efficiently and effectively wherever you are. And you might come to find some of these at-home lessons to be beneficial for managing your workflow and teams once back in-office!

Lesson No. 1: Utilize digital support to keep you on track. Create lists in Trello, Asana, EverNote or on your phone, set alerts and reminders in your calendar, communicate with your team! Best part, many of these services seamlessly integrate into your existing work-flow programs like G-Suite or Slack. 

Lesson No. 2: Set timers for productivity hacks. This ensures that you don’t waste time. Making a list and organizing your time with short breaks will keep you from sinking deep into a ‘temporary’ lull. You can also use the away mode to ensure your team knows you are not reachable during a given time. This is especially helpful if you would like to maintain office-hours while at home. Setting your status to away after 5pm supports the mental break that you would normally have when leaving the office and going home.

“A tip I learned years ago from my Dad, a master of highly productive working from home long before it was even a thing, is to schedule breaks to get yourself up, moving and outside. Fresh air and a quick walk around the block, provide an opportunity to reset, reenergize and refocus.”  

– Charlene McClendon, Vice Preisdent of Operations at Fulton Grace Realty

Lesson No. 3: Change your surroundings. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to tune out digital distractions and concentrate on your work, you just can’t seem to focus! In these cases, we recommend a change of scenery. Psychologists have found that putting yourself in a new environment, even if it’s the next room over, can help reset your brain and jumpstart creativity. You probably already take a few breaks throughout the day at the office, and that’s fine to do at home, too. Take walking meetings when you can and try standing up for a change.

Lesson No 4: Be honest with yourself. Although many of us may take the adjustment with ease, there are some of us with new, more challenging distractions like partners, roommates, kids, or the closet that really, really needs reorganizing. And while it’s ok to mix work and life especially with those quick breaks or family needs, knowing your distractions will help keep you on par! Communicate with your housemates about what times you cannot be interrupted, meal-prep, and set timers for your undivided attention. Limit your digital distractions by managing your tech bandwidth. Be results-driven: start with a goal then funnel what you have to do and personal guidelines you have to set to achieve that goal.



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