Looking forward to stepping up your work from anywhere game? Keep reading to uncover 15 tips that will help you do so.
If you already work remotely, you know you can’t depend on office space and co-workers to keep you focused. Instead, you have to rely on yourself and the tools at your disposal — and in return, you can make anywhere your office.
Need some inspiration for perfecting your remote work routine? Take advantage of some of these tips and resources to help you work from anywhere.
- Top Resources for Remote Workers
- Top Tools for Remote Workers
- Top Tips for Remote Workers
Top Resources for Remote Workers
You don’t have to go it alone when you work from home. Instead, take the time to invest in some of these free and low-cost resources.
Try to find a city that caters to your remote work lifestyle if you want to thrive. If you check out Nomad List, for example, you can search for cities that are the best for at-home jobs. The search tool allows you to filter results by features like internet speed, cost of living, free Wi-Fi, public transportation, and more.
If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, search cities selected explicitly as ideal for remote workers. Some of the top contenders in the U.S. include Austin, Texas; Portland, Oregon; and New York City. While you might not be able to relocate immediately, you can make it a goal to move to a place that’s conducive to success.
As a remote worker, it can get tedious being stuck in your home all the time. If you want to liven things up, it can be helpful to find a public space where you can complete tasks. That’s where Workfrom.co comes in. Simply enter a city, state, or zip code, and you can find cafes, parks, and more that are reviewed by other workers.
Look at photos of the space, so you know where you’re going. Be sure you won’t run into common nuisances, such as noisy patrons or live music. You can also use the site to connect with other people working nearby. Who says you can’t have a remote work buddy?
If you want to learn more about working from anywhere or listen to relatable stories, consider trying a new podcast.
Some top-of-chart selections include:
- Yonder: Interviews with remote work advocates and experts
- Modern Work: Shows about how people achieved remote work success
- Outside the Valley: Stories, insights, and strategies from remote company leaders
- The Remote Show: Tips, tools, management concepts, applications and more
- 21st Century Work Life: Shows covering topics like communication, team management and more
- Collaboration Superpowers: Stories about remote teams doing exciting things
What better way to learn about successful remote work than to study the experts? You can find plenty of books that cover a variety of topics, including communication, productivity, technology, management, and more. If you don’t want to purchase a copy, head to your local library.
For example, “Remote: Office Not Required” by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson covers advantages that come with working from home, such as increased talent pool and reduced turnover. “Work Together Anywhere: A Handbook on Working Remotely — Successfully — for Individuals, Teams and Managers” is another popular choice.
If you want to enhance your remote work skills, consider taking an online course on a topic like productivity or time management. You can find plenty of free and low-cost options on websites like Udemy, edX, Coursera, Alison, Lynda, Khan Academy, and more.
The Rochester Institute of Technology offers a Best Practices for Project Management Success course, for instance. The class runs for 11 weeks, and you can request a verified certificate upon completion. On Coursera, you can take Business Foundations through the University of Pennsylvania.
There are endless options right now. Whether you are a graphic designer that wants to upgrade his script fonts game and try some crazy stuff such as a graffiti font in his new project or a customer service rep looking forward to stepping up his conflict resolution skills; it was never easier to find the right online knowledge to suit your needs.
Top Tools for Remote Workers
If you’re looking for the best tools for remote work, you’ve come to the right place. The options below will ensure success in any at-home environment.
1. Mobile Hotspot
If you work remotely, you know the woes of wireless internet. When your connection goes out, you may not be able to complete tasks. For added security, invest in a mobile hotspot. This device will become commonplace for 70% of internet users accessing the web through a smartphone within the next five years.
When choosing a hotspot, factors you should consider include battery life, weight, and whether it uses both 2.4 and 5GHz bands of Wi-Fi. You can also think about special features, such as a file storage area and a built-in firewall.
2. Video Conferencing
If you need to brainstorm and talk with co-workers, management, or clients, video conferencing software is a must. Some of the most popular contenders include Zoom, Google Meet, and Skype. If you’re considering a paid program, test it out before you buy to ensure it offers all the features you require.
With one of these tools, you can meet people face-to-face, no matter where you are in the world. Integrate your calendar to ensure you never miss a meeting or webinar. You can also share your screen with others, ideal for presentations and slideshows.
3. File Management
You may already use Google Drive to store your photos and documents. However, this software has much more to offer. When you lack internet access, you can work on documents and spreadsheets with offline syncing. You can also share your files with others to promote remote collaboration.
If you use invoices, work orders, or other standard files, you can choose from hundreds of free templates within the program. Plus, if you manage a team, you can assign tasks directly to other Google users, complete with comments.
4. Team Communication
Don’t feel like talking to team members and management face-to-face? That’s where Slack comes in. In its most basic form, this tool allows you to instant message others in your group. You can also send direct messages if you don’t want the whole office to see your communications.
When you work remotely, effective communication is crucial. Slack makes it easy to stay connected. Even if you’re not paying attention to your feed, this program will send you a notification to alert you of new messages. You’ll also get an alert if another team member mentions you in a post.
5. Project Management
Do you have a to-do list that spans pages? Do your projects have tons of moving parts that are hard to track? Don’t rely on pen and paper to get the job done. Instead, use a smart tool that’s as dedicated to success as you are, such as Trello. This is a project management program that makes it easy to visualize your tasks and track progress.
This app is extremely flexible in what it can do. You can create daily goals, track meetings with colleagues, plan each step of a project, organize your personal life, and more. Plus, it offers a seamless experience between your desktop and smartphone.
Top Tips for Remote Workers
You have the resources and tools. What else do you need to maximize your success while working remotely? Consider the expert advice below.
1. The Pomodoro Technique
If you work eight hours straight, you’re apt to feel tired and burned out by the end. To maximize your productivity, try a strategy called the Pomodoro Technique, which encourages you to break your workday into 25-minute sessions separated by five-minute breaks.
These sessions are called pomodoros. After four, you should take an extended break of 15 to 20 minutes. Use a timer to stay on track, which will lend a sense of urgency and help you stay focused. Plus, it reminds you when you need to rest, something that’s easy to forget when sitting in front of a screen.
2. A Designated Workspace
If you’re new to working from home, you might think about sitting at the kitchen table or on your living room couch. At the end of the day, however, you’ll need to clean up your workspace if you want to eat dinner or relax with a movie. To improve your focus, create a designated place to work within your home.
The ideal solution is a home office where you can shut out the rest of the world. At the very least, get a desk that you use only for work. When you sit down in the mornings, you’ll feel ready to tackle your to-do list.
3. A Standard Routine
When you work remotely, you often don’t have to punch in at a specific time. However, it still helps to have a schedule and stick to it. This way, you — and your team — know what to expect each day. You’ll also know precisely when to call it quits at the end of the day.
Do you like to wake up early? If so, try getting up at 7 a.m and clocking in an hour later. If you’re a night owl, you can wait to start work until 10 a.m. Set your schedule around when you’re most productive.
4. Work-Life Balance
It can easily feel like you work all the time when stationed at home. Beyond maintaining a routine, you should also pay attention to your work-life balance. Once you clock out for the day, switch off the computer, and disable email alerts. If you have a home office, keep the door closed during off-hours.
You should also plan social time into your days. Add evenings out to your schedule, or midday lunch dates. If you can’t get out of the house, ask a friend to play video games online, or meet via video call. Social time will ensure you don’t burn out.
5. A Community Connection
You may not work in an office and see your co-workers, but that doesn’t mean you can’t interact with them. In fact, it’s beneficial to engage with your team every day. Send an email when you have a question or constructive feedback. Add a note in Slack if you love a project someone completed.
Remember, not all communications have to be work-related. You can use your digital tools to get to know your colleagues, too. Send a funny GIF to make the team laugh, or ask everyone to share photos of their pets.
You Can Work From Anywhere Successfully
Whether you’re new to remote work or a seasoned pro, you can benefit from the resources, tools, and tips above. Use whatever is at your disposal to ensure you stay productive and achieve success — and you’ll enjoy a freer, more flexible lifestyle anywhere.