Monday, December 08, 2014

The Secret Sauce for Working from Home Successfully

No matter if you are a freelancer or a remote worker - there are some steps you have to take to be productive!

1. Be Connected

You need a computer (desktop and/or laptop) with a fast Internet connection. You also need a smartphone to be able to receive and sent text messages and to get alerts. Make sure you have a professional background when you are skyping. (Hint: a bookcase is always appropriate)

2. Create a Pleasant Environment

Make sure you have a quiet and pleasant environment for working. The less distractions, the better you can focus on the job to be done. Sounds, smells and objects create the optimal atmosphere for you to be productive. If you are more productive without music, make sure you have peace and quiet. If you are a fan of feng sui, organize your workspace accordingly.

3. Stick To Your Schedule

Being boss of your own time also means that you have to set your own schedule and time manage yourself. Plan your day ahead, including your activities, deadlines and breaks. As a remote worker, you need to work as if you were in-house.

4. Your Home Office

Your home office is a place of work, so you need to stock it with office equipment (printer, copier) and office supplies (toners, cartridges, paper, pens, paperclips, notepads, envelopes, stamps, etc.). Don’t forget coffee and mineral water!

5. Dress for Success

Even when working from home, dress for success. You can dress casually, but make the effort that your outfit will not be embarrassing when a business acquaintance will visit you unannounced or your boss contacts you via Skype. It will make you feel more business-like and in control.

6. The Human Factor

It is important that freelancers and remote workers meet their clients and coworkers once in a while. Although a lot can be done remotely and in the cloud, there is still no alternative for making a personal (face-to-face) connection.

6. Be Your Own Manager/Boss

To be truly effective and successful, you need to be your own manger and boss yourself around. This might sound funny, but it’s the secret ingredient for success. If you are not tough with yourself, you will be distracted; only do fun stuff and basically waste time. Needless to say, you will pay for that down the road.

7. Keep in Shape
Being glued to your computer screen comes with a price. For many reasons, it’s important that you keep your health (and posture). Allocate time to do sports – walking the dog, working out in a fitness center, running or swimming…whatever fits your lifestyle! Remember: the Romans made a valid point with their “mens sana in corpore sano”!

Do you have more tips and tricks for freelancers and remote workers? Please share them!

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