Jane Santucci, owner of SANTUCCI Synthesized Communication, a home based Marketing, PR, Advertising business, has established a successful “Work from Home” model and has a few tips to share…
#1 Set your alarm, and stick to regular hours
The temptation is there to stay up later, and binge-watch a few episodes, but you’ll pay in productivity the next day.
#2 Get dressed
Even if it is night time sweats into day time sweats, show yourself the difference between the workday and you/family time.
#3 Set daily goals.
Anything from a Panda Planner to the back of an envelope, mark down what you want to accomplish. Ask yourself why you were not able to accomplish something you wrote down. Be honest with what you can do in an 8-hour workday. What you don’t finish on “Day 1” needs to be rewritten for “Day 2”. Goals can be professional and personal.
#4 Avoid snacking as a distraction
It is a hard rule to follow, so why not try and control your snacking habits. Portion out your chips/nuts/jelly beans in small 4-12 oz containers. If you’re dedicated, monitor your food consumption by using a free app like MyFitnessPal.com.
Consume lots of water. It is good for your mind and body but also breaks up the monotony of sitting/standing at a desk when you have to use the restroom every couple of hours. A bathroom break could also serve as a signal to switch from standing to sitting or sitting to standing at a desk.
Find a family member, friend, or neighbor to go for a walk/run with. During the COVID-19 pandemic, be sure to stay 6-feet from one another. Living without human “contact” during these times of isolation can be emotionally tough. Video conferencing is not the same as seeing a friend, even if it is from a distance in person.
If you don’t have a lot of time, you can play a workout on your tablet and do it outside (weather permitting). There are plenty of youtube channels for workouts for all abilities.
#6 Review your daily goals and set your goals for tomorrow
#7 You are not everyone’s assistant
This one applies even more when we are not dealing with a COVID-19 crisis. Just because you work from home, others think you can run errands or do odds and ends for them. Politely ask them to respect your workspace/time and explain you will see if you can help them out toward the end of your workday or the following day. “Sorry, I have a conference call at 10, 1, 3, and 4:30.”
#8 Get creative and make a designated workspace.
A spare bathroom, closet, anything with a door on it can work. Being out in the open with family and pets will give them multiple reasons to interrupt you.
#9 Say no to household chores during business hours.
This one we can debate. If you are indebted to billable hours conducting household chores eats into that time. 15-minutes turns into 30-minutes, and the next thing you know, you’re on the floor matching socks for an hour.
Note: Having small children home with you during the workday is tough. It cuts your workday down to about 4-hours if you a) wake up before them to sneak in an hour or two of work b) work while they nap, and c) put in a couple more hours after they go to bed. It forces you to see through any work that is not important and focus on what matters.
If my 2-year old son sees me on my phone, he will try and grab it out of my hand. I have been mildly successful with wearing earbuds and putting myself on mute during conference calls. I have found many conference calls can be a simple email. Let us all be more sensitive to the circumstances and more direct with goals, objectives, and responsibilities.