5 Keys to Remote Productivity
Are you struggling with productivity working from home? Here's how to change that.
If you're a business or an employee who has gone fully remote, you're probably well aware of some of the challenges that come with that. Whether it's time management, or noise in the background of your video call or a glitch in the system that sends your work spiraling down the drain, the challenges are boundless and real productivity can seem elusive. Setting aside personal employee struggles with time management for a moment, let's focus on the five keys of building a business model that can be fully remote but also reasonably productive.
Time Zone Wrangling
Going remote means that the whole world is your office now, and that means that you will probably, at some point, end up working across more than one time zone. A GPS time clock for everyone is a great place to start, as well as pre scheduled meetings that take into account a difference in time zones, but you may need to accommodate asynchronous work as well. In order to do that, you'll need a few more things.
First of all, you need a stable connection to your employees and your clients. This is partially outside your control. Do your best to make sure that your employees have stable connections; be clear about connection requirements and offer assistance where you can. After all, you may have access to resources that they alone do not. When it comes to customers and clients, you have even less control over their end of the connection, but you do have some control over what your system's requirements are.
The platform where your employees interact and where you work with clients needs to be rock-solid in terms of stability. Obviously you want it to be user-friendly and ideally it will look friendly and accessible, but the truly important thing is for it to be stable. more than a slick, pretty interface and a lot of flashy features, you need the platform where you do business to be a reliable place for employees to interact with each other and with clients.
Collaboration is, in many ways, easier when you're not in an office. Instead of having to walk down the hall to talk to someone, you can just drop a message in their inbox. Collaborative spaces are the backbone of every workspace. You need to allow for both synchronous communication via digital face to face meetings and messaging as well as asynchronous collaboration in, say, the notes on a project brief or the documents you're editing. It's also important for these spaces to be distinct from one another. Having every employee in one big room may be good for some things, but it's also a recipe for chaos. One-on-one collaboration in private rooms and small group areas are also important, so people can focus and get work done efficiently. In this way, in digital collaboration spaces you can recreate the office building you've outgrown, right down to the water cooler and the board room.
Above all things, clear communication is key. When you're not in an office building, your employees can't look up and see that you're in your office, working just as hard as they are. Not enough communication to and from management, and you may find your employees losing focus or failing to meet deadlines for lack of leadership. Too many check-ins and suddenly you've become the roadblock you were trying to remove. By all means you want to be clear, concise and accessible, but don't cross the line into harrying. If your emails devolve into background noise, important details and information can get overlooked or ignored.
These five challenges, if you fail to ruse to them, can be substantial barriers to productivity. You can think of them as roadblocks to overcoming, but you can equally think of them as keys to success. With these five basic skills mastered, you can unlock remote productivity and open your business to a whole new world of productivity.
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