4 Principles to Enable Effective Remote Working
While remote work has created perks and benefits such as allowing us to have flexibility, escape long commutes, and spend more time with family, it also exposes us to new distractions. It is becoming difficult to set healthy boundaries for tasks from work and family roles which greatly impacts productivity and health.
Here are some productivity principles that you can implement to efficiently organize your time, stay on task, and boost productivity.
1- Pareto Principle
The Pareto principle, also called the 80/20 rule, is a universal concept that states that 80% of outputs come from 20% of all inputs.
The Pareto principle can help you identify tasks that have the biggest effect on achieving your goals for the day or week. These are called high-impact tasks, and when you focus on completing them, your productivity will increase.
If you work remotely, the Pareto principle provides a useful system so you can prioritize tasks, optimize resources, and boost your overall efficiency. This principle doesn’t mean that you disregard the other tasks on your list. It just ensures you are doing things that you can realistically accomplish each day. You will not be stuck, and you will continuously move forward toward your goals.
Moreover, when used correctly, the Pareto principle will help you see how much time you have available to devote to your family, hobbies, mental health, self-care, and relationship-building activities.
2- Parkinson’s Law
“Work will expand to fill the time allotted for its completion.” This is the proverb known as Parkinson’s Law.
Do you put off assignments until the deadline to get started? Does it take days to complete a task that only takes a few hours if you just work on them right away? Are you waiting for the right time, or to be in the right mood to make an effort to start working on your goals? How to overcome Parkinson’s Law
We are all vulnerable to Parkinson’s Law because of psychological or environmental factors. Remote workers are especially exposed to it because there’s no face-to-face communication and there are interruptions at home.
1. Set a personal deadline much shorter than what’s given. Evaluate the task and estimate how much time is really needed to complete the task.
2. Try these productivity techniques:
b. Getting Things Done (GTD)
c. Pomodoro Technique
3. Use productivity and collaboration tools to manage your workflow, tasks, projects, files, and communication with your co-workers.
3- Automate Recurring Tasks
Recurring tasks are your day-to-day activities that occur on a regular basis. These are simple, repeated tasks that are essential to your role or your business. You need to get them done but if not automated, they will take so much of your valuable time and energy.
Automation happens when you use technology to make a process work automatically.
When you automate work processes, you can focus on responsibilities that really matter. Mistakes are prevented or reduced, and consistent results are ensured. Above all, you can be sure that things are done at any time of the day. Imagine how much time is freed up when you can systemize tasks that you do over and over again.
4-Tap Your Flow State
You are in a flow state when you are “in the zone” or when you are giving your complete and full attention to a task. Essentially, when you achieve your flow state you are fully engaged in what you’re doing, you are oblivious to distractions, and you somehow lose your ability to track time. Above all, you are making progress or you finish a task while being creative and fully enjoying the process. The flow state is where we are most present, happy, and productive.
Remote work and the gig economy are here to stay. Productivity will always be a challenge that has to be addressed by work-from-home (WFH) employees and freelancers.
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to becoming more productive. You have to figure out what’s best for your job, your team, or your business.
Start exploring your unique productivity requirements and once you find what works for you, you’ll be amazed at how these principles can get you closer to your goals.
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