A little over a week ago, I posted a question in the #u30pro Facebook group regarding what people’s ideal job would be. Would it be working from home or do you need the office setting? I’ve always had an ambition to work from the comforts of my home, but I have no issues with the office. The answers from the group were mixed, which is actually a good thing.
For some, the office brings a chance for structure, collaboration, and face time with co-workers. The home side? You can (most times) work at your own pace and are very mobile.
Thanks to the snowstorm that hit a good portion of the U.S. on Feb. 2, I needed to work from home. It was an opportunity to put things I have heard and read to the test. The day was productive beyond my expectations. If you find yourself working from home or end up running your own consultancy, here are some tips that I found helpful.
1. Have a plan- This is probably the most obvious because, as with any project/job, you need a plan. Maybe you have white board or a legal pad, but write down all the tasks you need to complete.
2. Stay Focused- Just as there are distractions in the office, the same can be said by working at home. It may be kids, the dogs, whatever. The better you can focus on your work, the more productive you’ll be. Which leads to…
3. Location. Location. Location- You need to have a spot in your home where you can avoid the distractions. If your house isn’t a good spot, hit the local library or coffee shop. But keep in mind those around you, too. They may not want to listen to your business pitch while sipping their mocha.
4. Be prepared- If you don’t normally work from home, you may not bring anything with you from the office. In all honesty, though, you just never know when something may pop up. Make it a habit to carry a USB drive or forward any documents you think you should always have with you to a BlackBerry or iPhone.
5. Relax- You have created the environment, now enjoy it. Even if you are working hard, relaxing is an integral part of making this work. Grab a coffee, put on some good music, and be productive!
How do you stay productive when working from home? What would you add to this list? Drop a comment!