With a lot more of us working from home, we thought we'd share 5 tips and tools that we've gathered over years of working from all over the world.
Science suggests that you take about a 15-minute break after 50 minutes of work. If those 50 minutes are completely focused on the task at hand, you're bound to be productive. Some employers may operate differently than others, but us pirates find that frequent breaks are very helpful.
Follow a Scheduled Routine
Clearly we think breaks and focused work time should play a role in this routine. We also find that a routine similar to a normal in-office day is about right for a successful work-from-home day. In a nutshell: Set an alarm for the same time every day, go through your normal morning routine (coffee is important here), work with breaks and make time for lunch, and make sure to set a time when you stop working each day.
Consider a Reward System
Different rewards work for different people, but we find that an afternoon coffee or sweet treat is sufficient. It's as simple as deciding to yourself that the reward for completing task XYZ is yours on the next break after completing the task.
Designate a Space for Work
Designation a workplace makes all the difference in the world. Even if your entire workday is on the computer, you will start to associate that place with work and it's familiarity will lead to productivity. It's also important to take your breaks outside of your workplace. Most of us pirates don't have access to an entire room to dedicate to this, but find that a corner is sufficient. The more natural light the better!
Assume Positive Intent
There's no perfect replacement for face-to-face communication, but a video call with a good internet connection can come close. Whether communication is via a call or written, it's important to always assume positive intent. This really applies to all work, but we feel that it's especially important where communication can be misconstrued. In short, it's always better to assume that colleagues intend to be helpful to you and the rest of the company and are doing the best with what they have at the moment of communication.