Telework - Being a Productive Team Member
- Avoid the temptation of social media. Social media is designed to make it easy for you to open and browse quickly. During the workday, though, this convenience can be a detriment to your productivity. To counteract your social networks' ease of use during work hours, remove them from your browser shortcuts and log out of your accounts on your work computer. You might even consider working primarily in a private or "Incognito" browser window. This ensures you stay signed out of all your accounts, and web searches won’t auto complete the word you're typing.
- Know yourself. We each have our own personal work style. Nobody sprints through their work from morning to evening – your motivation will naturally ebb and flow throughout the day. To capitalize on your most productive periods, save your harder tasks for when you know you'll be in the right headspace for them. Use slower points of the day to knock out the easier, logistical tasks that are also on your plate. Above all else, figure out what works best for you. Sometimes the answer is apparent, but other times you might need some inspiration. Don’t be afraid to try out different strategies until you find your groove.
- Discuss progress and expectations. It's wise to have a discussion with your boss about what can actually be accomplished from home. Ask your supervisor what the priorities are and discuss how tasks will get done. How are teams going to track projects they're working on? How will they meet to discuss this? Will there be standing meetings at a certain time to get everyone coordinated? This should be an ongoing conversation. Set up a video call with your team at least once a week to check in. Remember, teleworking is a new experience for many KSU employees. Be honest about what isn't working or can't get done in these circumstances.
- Overcommunicate. Working remotely requires you to overcommunicate. Tell everyone who needs to know about your schedule and availability often. When you finish a project or important task, say so. Overcommunicating doesn't necessarily mean you have to write a five-paragraph essay to explain your every move, but it does mean repeating yourself. It might also mean repeating back what you heard another person say, to make sure you interpreted their meaning correctly. Make your presence known, and don’t be afraid to ask for what you need from your supervisor and coworkers.
- Be positive. It can be more difficult to identify tone through virtual communication. When you work remotely, you must be positive, sometimes to the point where it may feel like you're being overly positive. Otherwise, you risk sounding like a jerk. This is also an uncertain time, which can be stressful for many. Being that source of positivity may just brighten the day of those around you. So, embrace the exclamation point! And find your favorite emoji or GIF. You're going to need them.