LAST YEAR, WE BECAME A REMOTE WORKFORCE PRACTICALLY OVERNIGHT. WHILST THE MOVE WAS AN ADJUSTMENT FOR SOME, 94% OF EMPLOYERS SAID PRODUCTIVITY WAS THE SAME AS OR HIGHER THAN IT WAS BEFORE THE PANDEMIC, ACCORDING TO A STUDY BY MERCER.
In order to truly operationalise a productive, hybrid workforce (spreading work hours between the office and home), it’s important to be intentional about how we approach both in-person and remote work.
3 TIPS FOR MAKING THE MOST OF REMOTE WORK
FOCUS ON OBJECTIVES
The amount of time you spend on a task is not an indicator of output, work quality, and effectiveness. Establish your goals as outcomes and objectives, not hours. Shift the way you organise work to focus on delivering on the key priorities.
To ensure that you’ve got top-down alignment on that approach, articulate trade-offs, outline outcomes, and talk through prioritisation with your stakeholders.
REDUCE THE VOLUME OF MEETINGS
Our meeting-centric culture emerged before the information age, when in-person meetings beat paper
memos as the most efficient way to collaborate. Now, modern technology makes it possible to get stuff done even when employees aren’t physically in the same conference room.
Whilst there’s significant value in meeting in one place so you can check your colleagues on bottlenecks or brainstorm, we need to get away from meetings as a default method. This is where an intentional approach to remote versus in-office work is crucial.
AVOID INFORMATION OVERLOAD
People have been complaining about email overload for a long time, and remote work has given us the burning need to solve the problem. We struggle with prioritisation due to the volume of emails, chats, and calls we receive, which can often result in important things getting buried in it all.
You can’t address everything that’s coming at you — decide the time you want to spend on email each week, and scale your email responses to that time. Use mail filters, rules, and alternative inboxes to sift through the clutter. Only check your chat during working hours, and even configure business hours on your calendar so people know when to contact you.
And remember to always take the occasional step back — connect with those who inspire you, go for a walk, and take care of yourself.
An intentional approach to remote work doesn’t just transform our productivity, but our relationship with work overall. It allows you to tailor your day according to when and how you work best, helping redefine your relationship with purpose.
Your motivation is ultimately your own sense of commitment, passion, and purpose. Remote work brings our work into alignment with our potential for making a difference — a driver that will help make a hybrid workforce a sustainable reality rather than a novel concept.