Telework Like a Pro: How to Keep Serving Those Who Serve While Working from Home

Like many Exchange headquarters associates, Social Media Designer Emily Zarsk is working from home until May 20 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Zarsk uses a dedicated workspace separate from the common areas of her home to maximize productivity while teleworking.

With workers all over the world taking steps to minimize their exposure to COVID-19, an increasing number of Exchange associates are now working from home.

Surely, the times they are a changin’—but working from home doesn’t have to mean a decline in productivity.

In fact, according to a 2019 Airtasker survey, remote employees worked an average of 1.4 days more than their in-office counterparts each month!

Here are five hot tips to help you stay in the groove while working from home:

Keep a to-do list

Keeping a to-do list can help you keep your thoughts together and set the course for what your workday will look like.

In fact, 30% of Airtasker survey respondents said this was an essential part of staying productive while teleworking. Not to mention you get to experience the satisfaction of scratching off each task as you complete it and get to feel a tangible sense of progress as you go about your workday.

Set aside a dedicated work space in your home

While it may be tempting to crack open your laptop in bed or on your couch, that’s not exactly conducive to productivity (it won’t do anything for your posture, either!)

According to the survey, 25 percent of teleworkers stay productive by working in the same location every day. Start each day in a space you mentally associate with work—ideally an office chair and desk situated in a room other than your bedroom or common areas. This will give you the mindset that the work day has officially begun and help keep your eyes on the prize throughout the day.

Communicate, communicate, communicate

The kind of quick communication that comes easy in an office environment can be difficult when your team is spread out across multiple locations—but a few simple tricks can make keeping up with each other a breeze.

When you first log on, check in with your supervisors to let them know what you plan to work on. At the end of the day, follow-up with what you were able to accomplish.

Keep your office phone forwarded to a number you can reach from home, and be sure you have instant messaging capabilities on the computer you are remoting in to. Don’t be afraid to check in with your team members throughout the day to see how they’re doing and if they need help with anything—remember, we’re not in this alone!

Minimize distractions—they’re everywhere!

Home is where we go to get away from the stresses of the outside world and recharge for the next workday. But having all the trappings of your favorite R&R activities close by can make it hard to get things done when teleworking—it should go without saying that one should resist flipping on the TV!

Working while other members of your household are home can also introduce an element of distraction—make sure they know that you are on the clock when teleworking and nicely ask that they limit any interruptions to emergencies or during scheduled breaks.

Be mindful of your health

COVID-19 is no joke, so it’s critically important to make your health a priority during this time. Wash your hands often, use hand sanitizers with at least 60 percent alcohol and avoid touching your face.

You should also avoid contact with people who are sick and socially distance if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. For more information on COVID-19, including what to do if you think you are sick, visit the CDC’s coronavirus website.

Remember, there’s no need to panic—we are in this together!

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