By Alex Myers

August is a tough month. It’s the last hurrah of the summer before autumn comes rolling in and you want to make the most of it. Sometimes, that means staying home, taking your laptop and working outside. And doing so is great, but when you are enticed to put your feet up, work on your own schedule, and frequently visit a fully stocked kitchen on a whim, staying focused can be difficult.

With these six tips, you’ll be on your way to making working from home actually work.

  1. Communicate often: Checking in on your team will show them that you are just as engaged as they are even when you’re not in your office or at your desk. It will also give them the push they might need to fill you in on any problems or challenges they have in completing a project. Utilize the communication tools email, instant message, video chat  that will work best for the employee you are trying to reach.
  2. Try to minimize distractions: Being at home means you have everything right at your disposal. However, it also means there are more opportunities for you to get distracted. For example, we understand you might want to create your own working from home playlist, but if it takes more than 20 minutes, you might be better off putting it on shuffle. The best way to avoid these subtle interruptions is to try and go about your daily routine crate your pets or bring your child to day care or camp like you would if you were in the office.
  3. Stick to your schedule: It’s easy to get lost in your work sometimes. But when you are physically in the office, around others, you’ll know it’s time to break for lunch when you see everyone else leaving or eating. At home, you have to be your own time keeper and know when it’s time to get up, step away, have a bite to eat, and mentally relax. Pay close attention to the time (and your stomach) and try to stick to your regular schedule.
  4. Have the same morning routine: Whatever your before-work routine is, stick to it. Get dressed in work clothes, or clothes that could at least pass as business-casual, and kick start your mind into thinking you’re heading to work.
  5. Create a proper work space: We know this probably isn’t your first time working from home, but if you don’t have an in-home office, you may just choose any comfortable spot to set up shop. Our advice is simple: Just make sure it’s big enough and not a place that you associate with relaxation. If, for example, you start working in bed you might end up bringing work stress into a place meant for ease and comfort. And we say a space that’s big enough because if you have a laptop, a notebook, paperwork, documents, a tablet, and a cell phone you need to constantly have with you, a small coffee table probably won’t do the trick.
  6. Make sure you have everything you need: Prior to leaving your office the day before (if it’s a planned work from home day), you should make sure you have all files and documents that you will need to properly complete your work. Most importantly, double check you have all log ins and passwords, plus the information you need to access your company network. And at home, don’t skimp on materials. Have extra everything pens, printer ink, staplers, paper, etc.  in stock at home so you don’t waste time running errands.
    Enjoy the August sunshine while we have it, but don’t get too caught up to remember you have work to do!

Source: Direct Capital