COVID-19 may have pushed the issue, but working from home has always been a feasible option for certain careers. At RevJet, we’ve found that, while there are drawbacks to working remotely, it also affords the opportunity to develop important soft skills for professionals at any stage in their careers.
The key to effectively working from home is in creating a space for yourself where you can focus and buckle down to your daily tasks. We’ve gathered a few useful tips from our team to help you bring focus to your workspace.
Our Team’s Tips and Tricks
The RevJet team is no stranger to remote work. Between our committed contractors, global team members, and traveling executives, working outside the office has always been a part of our culture. Here are just a few of our shortcuts to a more productive remote day.
Block out your working hours
In some ways, you can call this creating a temporal workspace. It can feel difficult to adjust to your new surroundings as a professional. Your brain has likely associated home with relaxation, running errands, eating meals, and socializing with family members. Making the switch to working in this environment can be difficult.
By creating a schedule for yourself, you can bring some of the structure of the office to your home office. Whether you plan to work a traditional eight to five, or you’d prefer to block out sections of time throughout the day, creating a personal schedule or routine can help you shut out distracting tasks and focus on your work.
It’s also important to recognize that the flow of events working remotely may be a little different. Try to avoid feeling frustrated or disappointed with yourself if plans go awry. You may feel less productive on some days and more productive on others. Just because you’re outside the office doesn’t mean that time spent considering a problem while brewing your coffee isn’t valuable to your process.
Cut Out Distractions
This tip may seem obvious. Working from home means you may have many more distractions. From family members to competing zoom calls to the neighbor’s leaf blower, it may feel like every time you sit down to work, a distraction pops up.
Our team uses a variety of simple strategies to avoid distractions. Sometimes a bulky headset offers both peace of mind and a visual cue to household members that you’re focusing on your work.
Listening to music can also be helpful, particularly if you engage in a little bit of behavioral conditioning. Listening to a specific style of music only while working can help you build a habit, so that the music itself acts like an aural office. Your taste in music may dictate what you listen to: our team listens to anything from classical music to film soundtracks to video game ambience.
Physical separation from distractions can also be helpful. Whether you have a separate room you can go to, an exterior building, or decide to invest in a curtain around your desk, physical separation can sometimes help you tune out everyday distractions.
Customize Your Resources
Working from home means that your resources may be a little different. Whether you’re working on a desktop, laptop, or with your hands, setting up your resources and workflow is key to staying organized and on-task.
Set up your devices with custom alerts, reminders, and site blockers to stay on task. You can set up your email and messaging apps to only alert you on certain senders, accounts, or during specific tasks.
Classifying certain applications as “gaming” on some computers can allow you to silence all notifications while in-task, a useful tool for activities that require intense concentration. Plug-ins like Cold Turkey Blocker or Block Site can also help you keep off of social media and news sites.
Invest in your workspace
With luck, we’ll all be returning to the office in the coming months, but for the time being, don’t be afraid to stock up on supplies and organizational aids. Desk customizations range from the simple addition of a better mousepad to structural add-ons to make your workday more comfortable.
If your day-to-day responsibilities involve large quantities of paper, purchasing a 10” x 12” basket can help you keep your loose notes in one place. Adding a bright floor lamp can bring an office ambience to your workspace. For restless workers, a small set of desk pedals or a standing desk can help you stay on task.
These customizations can help you keep your desk clean and organized, as well as helping you feel more focused and comfortable in your workday.
Working from home has also proven to be an effective option for many, who may hope to continue at least partial remote work for the foreseeable future. If you plan to make your home office your primary office going forward, these customizations are more than just a stop-gap solution, and are a real investment in your career.
Communicate with your peers
Working from home can sometimes feel isolating. Your coworkers used to be just a few steps away, but now you have to send an email or a text, call them up, or schedule a Teams Meet. Not only can this feel a little lonely, but it adds several steps to your workflow, making previously routine tasks feel more drawn out.
Staying in contact with your team members is the key to feeling connected and bringing a piece of the office with you. Apps like Slack, Microsoft Teams, Signal, Discord, and GroupMe are useful tools for creating a virtual workspace. With the capability to create different channels or chat rooms, you can set up a breakroom chat, troubleshooting chat, or set up project-specific conversations so that you and your team can be just a few clicks away.
Staying in contact is also vital to preserving your company culture. Once we’re all back in the office, we may feel a little rusty, but by staying connected, we can keep a sense of camaraderie, ease the transition back to in-person work, and continue building our professional networks and connections.
Last, but not least, do your best not to let your frustrations get the best of you. Working from home requires different skills and will have a host of new and different problems. Remember that no one expects you to function exactly as you would in the office. Be flexible and adapt to the needs of your new workspace as they come up and give yourself and your team the benefit of the doubt when you encounter the stumbling block.
Don’t be afraid to change up the structure of your day to include a brisk walk or a few more coffee breaks if that helps you reset your mood and stay focused. It’s normal to have technical difficulties, crossed wires, or days where you feel more or less productive. We had many similar issues while working in-person, they likely just felt a little bit less personal. Sometimes solutions are less than ideal, but other times we discover new skills and tactics we never expected.
Let’s do this!
Working remotely has its own challenges, benefits, and drawbacks. As we navigate this virtual landscape, try to give yourself grace and stay focused on your successes and discoveries. Working from home can be stressful, but it also affords the chance to learn, innovate, and explore.
RevJet is a Delaware-based software solutions company providing applications to airport and aviation professionals. We offer competitive solutions for airport management and provide services in software development and maintenance, quality assurance, contracting, and geographic information systems (GIS).
Our team of innovative developers, engineers, and contractors build high-quality, cost-effective resources to resolve your needs and streamline your workflow. We work with our clients to build the right application for you and create effective, long-term solutions. If you’re looking for a responsive, experienced team to design, build, and implement software for your team, reach out to us today.
RevJet is always looking for opportunities to expand and interact with peers and colleagues. For openings, refer to our Careers portal. To collaborate with us or discuss industry events, reach out to us at (302) 533-7913 or with our contact form.