It takes some practice to be effective when working remotely. I was well into my career before remote work became an option, and it took a good amount of trial and error before I got it right. Working from home, or away from the traditional office setting, can leave some of us feeling disconnected or lacking structure and routine; but it is possible to be just as productive while working remotely. Here are some of the things I’ve learned to get the most out of working remotely:
Dress for Work
I’ve found that mimicking my office-day routine puts me into the best frame of mind to work remotely. In my case, I get dressed in my office clothes before I get started working from home. I’m not saying that you need a suit and tie a suit to be productive, but comfortable clothes that are not pajamas may help you get into work mode faster. I wrote recently about how routines can help loan officers be more successful, here.
Have a Dedicated Workspace
The other thing that helps is giving yourself the right work environment. We don’t all have the luxury of a home office, but setting up a workspace with everything you’re going to need will keep you from being distracted. Pick a part of the house with enough space to remain on task. Use a desk with a comfortable chair if you can, and a window can make the experience more pleasant. A door you can close will allow you to shut out unwanted noise and other disruptions.
Find a Good Balance
It’s important when working from home to find a good balance between your work life and your personal life. When the house also becomes your office, it can be difficult to switch off when you’re done working. Set a schedule and stick to it, and when the day is over, sign off. Keeping the work separate from the personal will allow you to not get distracted by the things that need to be done around the house, and it will preserve your you-time, so you can reset and recharge for tomorrow.
Set Realistic Goals
Think about what you need to accomplish for the day or week, and then prioritize those things.
You may not be able to accomplish as much out of the office as you can in the office, so don’t set unrealistic goals for yourself that you can’t realistically meet. Pay attention to what you can do effectively, and then set goals around what you’ve learned about your at-home performance when you compare it to your in-office performance.
I can get a lot done at home, but still not quite as much as when I’m in the office. These tips may help you improve your effectiveness and get the most out of working remotely.
Good luck and let me know how any of these ideas may have helped you!
If you’re a loan officer, sales manager, or branch manager considering new opportunities, don’t hesitate to get in touch.