Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) are proud advocates for agile working and activity based working (ABW). As we’ve highlighted in other articles (see below), alternate ways of working like agile working commonly adopt flexible working practices that help enable teams to work anywhere and at any time. This working style is increasingly being utilised in workplaces around the world, with some companies hiring purely flexible workers. As these practices become more common, it’s important to provide support to your employees to help them get the most from working this way. Having flexibility to work in different places is great for many people, but not everyone finds it easy. For example, when working from home, some people find it difficult to concentrate. With these kinds of difficulties in mind, AWA have put together some helpful tips for flexible workers to work efficiently in their home environment.
Working from home is a popular idea that enables employees to avoid the early commute and work in a comfortable environment. However, some people may find it quite distracting and find it difficult to focus on the tasks at hand if there are children at home or even pets to play with. A good way to avoid getting distracted is to treat your day like a normal working day. Start and finish at reasonable hours that work for you, and then enjoy the extra time you have gained by avoiding that nasty commute to and from work. Without a formal structure, it is easy to find yourself avoiding work and coming to the end of the day without accomplishing what you needed to accomplish. The idea behind this way of working is to help people be just as productive, if not more than when in the office.
The great thing about agile and activity based working is that you have the ability to work from anywhere that works best for you. For example, the workplace management consultants at Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) commonly find themselves working in cafes and restaurants when in-between client meetings and this can be fine for particular tasks (but not others!). However, as agile workplace consultants, we advise people to ensure as far as possible that their home workplace minimises distractions and is comfortable (i.e. in terms of an ergonomically suitable workstation, temperature and lighting) – all factors that are important to good “Cognitive performance“! If your home has noisy neighbors, young children or insufficient space to work, then it’s unlikely to be a productive workplace experience.
As we know, knowledge workers (People who think for a living) require a significant amount of concentration in order to achieve their daily tasks. It is important to set boundaries with neighbours and friends to make sure you achieve your daily objectives. It’s also important to remain socially cohesive with your team even though you’re now distance working. A cohesive team is one that can maintain good communication even when working away from each other for some or all of the time.
Flexible working practices require planning, communication and flexibility. Take an opportunity to strategically think about it before jumping on the bandwagon. For more information, contact Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) on +44 207 743 7110 or email your inquiry to email@example.com.