COVID-19 and the global pandemic to which it’s given rise have facilitated the need for many small businesses to go remote. In the interest of protecting employees and curbing the spread of the virus, even business owners who have disparaged telecommuting in the past have come to embrace the practice of working remotely. Needless to say, some business owners have adjusted to this arrangement better than others. If you’ve grown accustomed to reporting to an office every day, telecommuting is liable to represent a huge transition. Fortunately, with the following tips at your disposal, staying productive amidst the current pandemic should be well within your abilities.
Check in with Team Members on a Daily Basis
Some people disparage remote work because they think it makes employees feel fractured and disconnected. While it’s true that telecommuting makes in-person interactions difficult, there are numerous other ways to touch base with your team and make everyone feel like a cohesive unit. For example, holding a brief teleconference at the beginning of each workday can help ensure that everyone is on the same page and fully understands what’s expected of them. Additionally, if there are any team members with whom you work closely, make a point of checking in with them at various points throughout the workday and carefully monitoring their progress. Furthermore, make yourself accessible to your employees and encourage them to contact you with any queries or concerns.
Utilize Automated Business Analysis (ABA) Tools
Entrepreneurs looking for an effective way to monitor progress and productivity in real time should make use of dependable automated business analysis tools. The right ABA resources will help you analyze large amounts of data in a short span of time, enabling you to identify areas in which your enterprise is succeeding and areas in which you need to improve. With small business operations and consumer expectations changing on a near-constant basis, no company should be without reliable ABA.
Create Your Own Structure
Some business owners decry telecommuting because they believe it lacks structure. After all, when you work in a traditional office setting, most workdays follow a similar pattern. You know when to report to work, when it’s okay to take breaks and how much work to complete in a given day. To a large extent, this sense of structure is enforced by business owners and personnel managers. When these individuals see people acting in ways that run counter to the usual routine, they often admonish them in an effort to keep familiar patterns intact and maintain structure within a business.
While it’s true that some people are better at working without supervision than others, most remote workers operate according to a sense of structure. The only difference is that it’s a sense of structure that they create and enforce. Provided employees submit satisfactory work and meet deadlines, there’s nothing wrong with allowing them to set their own routine.
Business owners who have never had the freedom of working from home may run into problems when separated from the structure associated with traditional workplaces. However, creating one’s own structure isn’t nearly as daunting as fledgling remote workers may think. Creating a workable schedule and sticking to it can be a bit of an adjustment at first, but after a week or two of adhering to your new routine, the absence of outside structure shouldn’t prove problematic.
Remove Potential Distractions from Your Workspace
Distractions are among the most harrowing obstacles new remote workers need to overcome. When working from the comfort of home, distractions are everywhere, and without any employees around, you won’t have to worry about setting a bad example if you succumb to them. Since televisions, video games and other modern-day conveniences can hinder productivity, take care to purge your designated workspace of potential distractions. After a little bit of practice, overcoming the temptation to indulge in distractions will become second nature.
In a shockingly short span of time, the COVID-19 pandemic has upended the way many small businesses operate. With the aforementioned virus presenting a prominent threat for the foreseeable future, even business owners who were once vehemently opposed to telecommuting have come to recognize its many advantages. Unsurprisingly, individuals with little to no remote work experience are liable to need help adjusting to this new arrangement. Business owners looking to stay productive while working from home can benefit from taking the measures discussed above.