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The allure of working from home continues to gain traction and for lots of good reasons. One of them being that remote work allows you to operate from your comfort zone.

Remote working is the new normal.

There has been a 159% increase in remote jobs between 2005 and 2017, and the number keeps rising. Today, 4.7 million US citizens work remotely: 3.4% of the population!

trends in remote work growth

Remote working conjures up images of people working in pajamas at whatever time. 

The truth of the matter is very different.

Remote working is a venture that needs the mastery of a work-life balance.

To maximize productivity and to keep that job you love, you must take your remote job seriously.

work from home guidelines

Let’s look at 8 little known tips that will help you sustain a career working from home:

1. Avoid Working in Your Pajamas

For a lot of people, the attraction of working from home is ‘working in your PJs.’

While that may be a possibility, it’s not always the best option. 

If you’ve worked in the corporate world, you’ve heard of the phrase ‘dress for success.’

This is not just a saying, but a proven theory.

Dressing up for work prepares you psychologically. 

Being in the right frame of mind enables you to be ready for the day’s tasks, whether it’s e a video chat, or meeting up with a colleague. 

Dressing up makes you feel upbeat and ready to get on with it. Before getting started with work, put on your ‘power suit’. 

Dressing up formally boosts your cognitive process and has a direct effect on your production. The more productive you are, the higher your chances of keeping your job. 

2. Set Ground Rules With Your Family and Friends

The main concern most employers have with working from home is being distracted from your job. Let’s be honest, family and friends can be difficult to work around.

As such, it is important to set ground rules with your family and friends. Let them know that they should not disturb you during work hours unless there is an emergency.

Set specific working hours that enable you to interact with family and friends when you are free. Be sure to communicate your work schedule and times when you have a break.

Working for certain blocks of time allows you to be more productive, which is what bosses look out for.

3. Change Your Environment

cheerful adult woman using computer
Image from Freepik by wayhomestudio

Remote working can make you feel cooped up in the same environment for days on end. There is also the likelihood of overworking, which is also not good for productivity.

To make your work more fun and exciting, occasionally step out of the house: find a new working environment. 

It doesn’t matter if it is a restaurant or cafe that you love, a co-working space, a library, or even a park. 

So long as the environment is conducive for work, get on with it. The break from the normal will be refreshing enough to give you new zeal and a kick of productivity.

4. Take up Training

Just because you bagged the position, it does not mean that you shouldn’t want to improve on your skills.

Indeed, one way to keep your job for longer is to improve on your existing knowledge. There are lots of online resources available to improve your skills.

Take up online courses from Small Revolution, an online learning platform that helps you develop skills for a long term career.

The courses are well designed to fit different career paths. They are easy to follow and are relevant to the current job market.

5. Remain Proactive

As a remote worker one can easily feel disconnected from the rest of the team. You may even feel uncomfortable clarifying important notes, or setting up meetings with colleagues.

Remote working requires you to be more proactive than you would normally be when working in an office. 

Remain proactive by sharing your current project’s progress, your achievements, and future goals. 

Visibility in a company is important in deciding who gets promoted or dropped. Remaining proactive in a stay at home job is a way of letting your superiors take notice of you, and see your value to the company.

Communicate with your colleagues and check in on them beyond work. Schedule meetings with your bosses if there is a need. Have proper working hours, a vision board, and a planner to guide you.

6. Stay Vigilant Against Security Threats

In this era of online living, hackers are also in a hunt for prey. They will do anything to get hold of important company documents.

You do not want to be the pathway through which hackers infiltrate the company as this may compromise your position.

It is your responsibility as a remote worker to protect your company from such criminals.

  • Beware of the company’s security policies and follow them. 
  • Use a business-grade Virtual Private Network for encryption.
  • Avoid disclosing sensitive information to family or friends.
  • Verify all documents sent to your email.
  • Know how to report security threats.

7. Ask for What You Need

For you to succeed in a home-based job, you need to be comfortable in your new home office.

Some organizations that support work from home will often have a budget set aside for what you may need.

As soon as you start working from home, do not hesitate to ask for what you need so long as it is within reason.

Some companies will provide equipment that allows you to work comfortably. This includes, but is not limited to, a monitor, a keyboard, software, or even a chair.

Having everything you need to set up a home office will help you get comfortable in your new environment.

8. Invest in Your Comfort

What you earn from your job should not go to waste. It should help you transform your life and working experience. 

Go and get that furniture that you feel will improve your working experience. Reward yourself with that new laptop that you have always wanted. Move into a new home with a separate office if you feel that is what you need.

As you pay your bills and spend money on shopping, be considerate of your working environment. After all, on average, you will spend more than half of your day on your work desk.

Transforming your workspace will boost your morale and help you keep that valued job.

Getting It Right

If you have worked from home for several years, you might fall into a slump and feel uninspired. 

Having a clear vision of your goals will help reverse this. Write down your goals and create timelines and a plan on how to achieve them. 

Track your career growth and improve your skills by learning the latest tips and techniques to excelling remotely. 

Take up resourceful training that will help you continue on the winning path.

Small Revolution provides training modules that are accessible, hands-on, and practical. These will help you keep your job and to build a pathway to the top. 

Start by enrolling in this Successful Behaviors and Habits course today.

Photo by Freepik / CC BY

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Small Revolution

I'm Katrina McKinnon, founder of CopySmiths and Small Revolution. I'm using my 20 years' experience in building and operating online businesses to create engaging educational materials that helps others become successful online workers. Find me on LinkedIn and Twitter.