Tips & Tricks to Stay Productive While Working from Home

Apr 01, 2020

By Lea Cherchia, Director of Member Services, MassBio

The rise of “social distancing” has led to unprecedented levels of working from home (or WFH), and while remote work is commonplace for some, others are left struggling to stay productive. To help you get through these few weeks (or months!) without sacrificing work ethic, we’ve compiled some best practices to make you feel like you’re back at the office.

  • Get Up & Get Ready: Act like you are going into the office or will be having face-to-face meetings. While you don’t need to wear a suit, getting out of your pajamas and even putting on some light makeup can help change your mindset for the day.
  • Schedule your Day: Without the same cadence of calls or impromptu meetings it can be very easy to lose track of the day. Familiarize yourself with your to-do list, identify the top 3-5 things you will get done that day, and schedule time in your calendar to work on them.
  • Move Around: When you’re at the office you’ll walk to the kitchen, or bathroom, or go grab lunch. We quickly lose that luxury when at home and often forget to move around. Set aside some time in the morning or afternoon to go for a 10 to 20-minute walk and get some fresh air. Better yet, every hour or two, plan to do some combination of pushups, planks, or sit ups, or even join in on MassBio’s virtual workouts to get you up and off your computer.
  • Pre-Plan Meals and Snack Times: Don’t fall into the trap of snacking constantly throughout the day or forgetting to eat altogether. Most of your coworkers and teammates are likely on different schedules making lunchtime more fluid. Decide at the beginning of the day what you’ll eat and when to stay healthy.
  • Embrace your Phone: WFH is very new for some people, and a challenge for those who prefer face-to-face meetings. But, don’t get trapped in a never-ending email chain. Communication is more important now than ever, so if you have any questions be sure to pick up the phone and call someone, rather than waiting for an email back.
  • Find a Space Best for You: Not everyone has a home office but finding a space where you can be productive is critical – and it doesn’t always have to be the same spot! Locate somewhere that is quiet, clean/organized, has enough light, and is far enough away from your bed or the couch.
  • Log Off: Just because you have 24/7 access to your work, doesn’t mean you are required to be on-call all hours of the day. Determine when you are most productive (early in the morning vs. later in the afternoon) and make a schedule that works best for you. And, once you’ve finished your work for the day, shut off your computer.

Working from home can be a challenge for many, but right now it’s critical to stay at home and protect the health and wellbeing of yourself and those around you. Life sciences companies in Massachusetts and beyond are working tirelessly to develop vaccines, treatments, tests, and supplies to fight the outbreak of COVID-19, but in the meantime, we can do our part by staying at home and helping to flatten the curve.

To learn more about MassBio and the larger life sciences efforts, check out our Virtual Benefits.

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