Virtual assistants are in demand by online businesses and organizations. Business owners benefit significantly from the help and support they receive from VAs all over the world. They offer administrative services, answer phone calls, provide customer support, and so much more.
However, some virtual assistants face the challenge of maintaining a productive routine while staying at home. Aside from the blurring line between work and home life, there’s a ton of distractions that makes it difficult to work effectively.
Luckily, there are several ways for virtual assistants to improve their performance and increase their productivity. Just a couple of productivity hacks, tips, and tricks can significantly reduce distractions and improve their focus at work.
Are you a virtual assistant struggling to focus while working from home? Here are some helpful tips that can help increase your productivity.
Helpful Tips To Boost Work Productivity At Home
List your tasks
Remote employees such as virtual assistants are busy people. They handle a bunch of tasks and responsibilities on a daily basis.
At times, too many tasks make it difficult to keep track of what needs to be done urgently, which ones are important, and which ones could be scheduled later in the day. A mix-up like this can affect your productivity as you wouldn’t have a good and clear picture of what your day should look like.
Listing your tasks is one easy way to fix this. Whether it’s on a piece of paper, notebook, or stick pad, create a list of tasks and set goals you have for the day, week, or month. This will give you a more tangible image of what needs to be done. This will also allow you to focus on the task at hand, knowing what you are going to do next.
Have something to eat before working
Work-from-home schedules can be spontaneous. While some remote employees have a fixed schedule, some depend on their work hours on the availability of their clients. Despite this, one productivity hack to keep you focused on your work is to always have something to eat before you start working. Food can not only give you the energy to start your work day, but an empty stomach can only distract you and prevent you from focusing.
Deal with tasks depending on their difficulty
There are two sides to this hack. Some believe that working on the toughest tasks at first can help dictate the way the rest of your day would go. Starting your day with the most important tasks makes the remaining smaller assignments feel like a breeze.
On the other hand, some say that working on minute tasks first gives your mind a good warm-up and the momentum to deal with your more demanding projects. Find what works for you and stick with this setup.
Take several small breaks
Although you’re working from home, you are still entitled to take some breaks. Aside from the allotted food breaks in your schedule, taking quick breaks in between tasks gives your mind time to rest and recover. Time management strategies such as the Pomodoro technique incorporates this productivity hack by adding quick 5 to 10-minute breaks after a long period of intense focus.
Keep your breaks productive
While taking regular breaks while working is essential, it is important to keep yourself from getting too distracted. As much as possible, make your breaks productive.
You can use your 5-minute break to meditate, stretch your legs, or make a nice cup of coffee to power you through. Avoid distractions like social media even when on your break to keep your mind conditioned to work.
Get rid of distractions
Working from home typically comes with a ton of distractions. The lack of in-person supervision and monitoring makes it easy for remote employees to be distracted from work.
You could have family members moving around, a noisy neighbor, or a demanding pet. In addition to this, remote work setups make it so easy for employees to get stuck browsing social media on their mobile phones.
To avoid this, get rid of any possible distractions when you’re working. Stay in a spot in your house where your family can stay out of your way, buy noise-canceling headphones, or keep your pet out of your home office.
If your phone is not needed for work, keep it as far away from you as possible to stop you from the temptation of checking your notifications and using your phone during work hours.
Many believe that working on multiple tasks at once allows them to be more productive. While this can be true for some people, it is generally not the case for most. Instead, multitasking generally makes it difficult for people to focus on a task. In turn, it takes much longer to finish.
Instead of juggling several tasks all at once, focus on one thing at a time. This gives your mind time to focus to be more creative, innovative, and productive.
Build an ergonomic workspace
Working from home allows you to work anywhere. Whether you’re lying on your bed, slouched on your dining table, or head backward on your couch. While any of these is considered comfortable, it may not be the best for your productivity. If you get too comfortable on your bed or your couch, you can easily fall asleep at a time when you’re supposed to be working.
While working from home is designed to be flexible in terms of work setups, it is recommended to have a designated work area in your home for the utmost productivity. Whether it’s a spare room or just a nook, dedicated a space where you can sit and focus on work.
But aside from the space itself, it is important to design it in a way to be efficient and ergonomic. Keep important work paraphernalia within arm’s reach so that you don’t have to get up every time you need a specific document or device. More importantly, you don’t need a bed or couch to be comfortable. Instead, it all boils down to ergonomics.
Ergonomic workspaces are designed to keep your body comfortable by minimizing stress. Find an ergonomic chair and keep your table at a suitable height to prevent stress caused by awkward posture.
Invest in good lighting
Another important element of a good home office is good lighting. Did you notice how corporate offices are always bright? This is because the quality of lighting can affect your productivity. If your home office doesn’t let in a ton of natural light, then you have to create good lighting for your space with lamps, spotlights, and the like.
Ideally, keep your office lights indirect from your work table. Harsh and direct lighting can produce glare, contrast, and shadows that can be harmful to your eyes. Instead, use desk lamps and ambient lighting to keep your home office bright while also having a direct light source for specific tasks.
Productivity has always been a grey area in the topic of remote work setups. While some believe that working from home poses a danger to employees’ productivity, some say that the elements of flexibility and autonomy bring positive results instead.
For virtual assistants working from home, it is your responsibility to create a productive work environment to stay focused, effective, and efficient for your clients.
Productivity hacks can effectively improve your work-at-home setup and boost your performance at work. With these, you can enjoy the benefits of working remotely without sacrificing your work efficiency, effectiveness, and productivity.
Want to know more about effective strategies to boost productivity? Sidekicks is an on-demand virtual company and we’re eager to help visionaries and entrepreneurs like you. Get a free ebook and learn more about how we can help you by signing up for our newsletter. We also offer a free 30-minute consultation if you prefer something more personal.