You’re looking over your new desk (it may be the dining table, but it never looked so professional), you’re rocking your best work attire (shirt and jacket up top, tartan pyjamas down below) and you’re ready to sit down and get to it.
But those productivity gains you promised your manager won’t magically materialise, so how can you make your flexible working arrangement work best for you? Turns out it has a lot to do with technology and creating the right headspace as well as work space.
FIND THE RIGHT SPACE
Find a space that gives you room to move, allows you to spread out bits of paper so you can visualise problems, and has places for the tech that’ll make life easier.
IT’S ALL ABOUT STORAGE
If it’s one thing renovation shows teach us, it’s that storage matters – and it’s no different in the digital world. So equip yourself with a filing cabinet, devise a system that helps you find things instead of hindering it and explore your options online. Cloud storage will allow you to access your files on the go – whether you’re in the office, at home or down at the local café enjoying the sunshine.
LIGHT UP YOUR LIFE
Plenty of people complain about the lighting in their office, but now that you’re the office manager and worker, you can do something about it. Natural light is good for the soul, improves productivity and cuts down on the cost of energy. It’s a win-win-win.
MAKE THE SPACE YOUR OWN
Having things like pictures, plants and other knick-knacks in your space is fundamental. In fact, a 2014 study stated that removing a workspace of these things makes it “the most toxic space” you can put someone in. By adding in plants to a sparse office, the researchers found that workers’ memory improved, along with performance.
Taking a break to get more done can seem counterintuitive, but it’s beneficial on a number of fronts: taking your mind off things can help you think more creatively, it can stop us from becoming bored and unfocused, and helps to reprioritise what we’re working on. It may be one of the reasons why tech such as wearables can help you set goals and give you friendly reminders to get moving when you’ve been sitting still for too long.
There’s a bunch of different methods – the Pomodoro method and the 52-17 method are both worth looking at – but the moral of the story is simple: all work and no play makes Jack an unproductive worker (less catchy than the original, we know).
How have you set up your home office?
This post was originally published on Telstra Exchange.