Telecommuting Tips to Boost Productivity
Telecommuting, or working remotely for an employer, offers great benefits for both you and the company you work for. If you telecommute, use these tips for the getting the most out of your flexible work arrangement.
Create the Right Setting
- Designate a workspace. Joining and working at The Guild a few days a week at a hot desk or full time at a dedicated desk will provide a sense of place so that you can focus and leave work at work.
- Select office furniture. An ergonomic chair is your most important investment. Try to get an adjustable model with adequate back support. You’ll also need a desk that enables you to keep your wrists straight when using a keyboard.
- Optimize your lighting. Lighting is important for performance and your mood. If you have a window in your work area, position your computer monitor at a right angle to the natural light. Layers of artificial light are also a great option. The Guild has ample natural light and many of our members work outside on nice days!
- Keep you and your equipment safe. Use surge protectors and dust covers, and tuck cables away safely. Take regular exercise breaks to avoid repetitive injuries and eyestrain.
Stay in Touch
- Set up a regular meeting schedule with your supervisor. You may be concerned that working remotely can be a barrier to advancement if you’re less visible to your supervisor. Actually, this is becoming less true as millions of information workers take up telecommuting.Weekly meetings can give you a chance to set goals and review progress.
- Let colleagues know the best way to reach you. Circulate your contact information to everyone at the office. Try to stick to similar hours each day, including starting and ending times. In case of emergencies, advise people whether it’s best to reach you by email or your cell phone. Check all messages frequently.
- Make outside parties aware of your arrangement. It’s usually easiest to let clients and other callers know that you’re working from The Guild. This helps you convey a professional demeanor and provide high quality service so they’re likely to feel comfortable with the arrangement.
- Attend staff meetings. Strive to remain part of the team. Make it a priority to attend staff meetings in person. Video calls can be a valuable backup for those times when it’s impossible to get to the office.
- Social interactions are an important part of relationships at work. Take advantage of The Guild’s happy hours, Wine Down Wednesdays, Taco Tuesdays, member lunches, summer concerts, as well as your company’s parties and outings. Use breakfast and lunch dates to keep up with your old office mates and get to know new employees.
- Participate in the local chapter of your professional association. Stay on the lookout for continuing educational opportunities and speaking engagements. Better yet, invite them to use The Guild for their next meeting. With our conference rooms and community room, we’ve got space for groups! Networking activities can nurture and expand your connections, increase your knowledge and skills, and reduce any feelings of isolation.
- Negotiate cost sharing. Clarify which expenses your office will cover and which items you’ll pay for. Many companies buy one workstation per employee, whether you use it at home or at the office, so your Guild membership may be paid for by your employer.
- Keep track of your hours. It’s easy to lose track of how much time you’re spending on work. Aim for a schedule you can sustain over the long-term. You may want to start off small and gradually increase the days you work remotely until you find the right balance for you.
- Seek support from your family. Having your family on board is essential to your success. Invite them into The Guild to see where you work and to meet your coworkers.
Telecommuting can reduce stress and help you achieve a better work-life balance. When working remotely for your employer, take steps to maintain your morale, stay productive, and keep in touch. You’ll both enjoy the results!
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