1. Establish Peace and Privacy
More than half of those working from home say that social media and smartphones affected their productivity during lockdowns. Others cited binge-watching, kids, pets, partners and gaming as their biggest distractions. Regardless of which situations and scenarios divert their attention, most could avoid unnecessary interruptions by simply establishing a place of peace and privacy at home.
Whether it be the dining room table, the spare bedroom or a corner of the living room, it’s important to dedicate and maintain a place for work. While it may be feasible to work on the couch for an hour or two, a comfortable, quiet space is crucial to optimizing flexible setups and achieving maximum productivity.
2. Use Multiple Monitors
Using multiple monitors is another great way to optimize a flexible work setup. Whether they’re working from home, the office or both, employees can see more and do more with two or three screens in front of them.
For instance, teachers could use one monitor to keep an eye on students in a Zoom classroom and another monitor to share presentations. A third might come in handy when they need to input data like grades and attendance while supervising a virtual class.
3. Invest In Portable Devices
Portable devices make it easy to switch between in-person and virtual work. Plus, with a laptop or tablet, employees can complete projects and easily check in with colleagues on the go. Aside from a smartphone, the following devices may prove useful in a flexible or hybrid setup:
- Laptop: Unlike desktop computers, laptops allow workers to complete projects on the go and easily transition from the home office to a traditional workspace—or the coffee shop down the street.
- iPad: Apple’s iPad is lighter and more portable than most laptops and comes with just as much storage. It also offers superior integration between other Apple devices.
- Tablet: This device is very similar to the iPad in that it features a touch screen and provides almost instant access to the internet. However, tablets are more suited for popular software like Adobe, and most allow users to employ multiple apps at once for maximum productivity.
- Wireless mouse and keyboard: All of the devices above lack a full-size mouse and keyboard. Luckily, there are wireless versions available to suit hybrid and flexible work setups.
4. Utilize Online Tools
Collaboration is the new normal, even in hybrid and flexible work environments. That’s why online tools like Slack, Asana and Trello have become so popular in recent years. These apps boast a number of features and integrations that make it easier to onboard and train new hires, manage daily tasks and attend online meetings. Many are also available on both mobile and desktop devices to support post-COVID work setups.
Striking a Positive Balance
As long-term flexibility and hybrid work become more desirable, it’s important to incorporate trusted tools and tips into the ever-changing workplace environment. Of course, it may take some trial and error—not to mention a lot of patience—to optimize a setup and strike a positive balance between personal and professional life. However, once an employee finds a tool or tactic that works for them, it’ll be easier to maintain a healthy routine, stay productive and prevent burnout.