As the number of employees working remotely continues to increase, it is important to consider how to achieve a good work-life balance from home. Some regularly work a day or a few days from home, while others work from home all the time. Studies have shown that working from home can improve employee productivity, help boost workers’ morale, and even reduce office operating costs because fewer permanent workstations are needed.
In order to effectively work from home, however, the average employee requires a few considerations. You need a steady Internet connection, monitors and PCs, printers, phones and perhaps other equipment to do your job. With a majority of homeowners already having such equipment and the availability of video conferencing for remote meetings, working from home today is easier than ever.
What hasn’t changed with the availability of technology, however, is the ability of humans to separate their work and personal lives while working at home. The office is right there, so why not finish up some last-minute tasks? The laundry is calling, so why not throw in a load during work? Being unable to balance work and leisure activities is often cited as the most difficult aspect of working from home.
The accompanying infographic, How to Create a Home Office That Improves Work/Life Balance, tackles the issue of keeping your work and home lives separate when your office is in your home. It is understandable that while creating two lives in one physical environment is not that easy, it is possible. All it takes is a bit of planning.
A large house makes it easier to turn a spare room into an office or to set up or even build an office in a physically isolated part of the home, but there are ways to create a quiet, private home office even in a small home or apartment. The key is to choose a location that is at least somewhat apart from the main action — a corner of a room, the basement, outdoors or even an area set off from the rest of the house by a room divider.
Another key factor in establishing this balance is the mental separation of home and work. This means that the home worker must actually act as if he or she is at the office when working from home. Yes, there is a TV nearby, the mail needs sorting, groceries and meals require planning, the laundry must get done.
To succeed at working from home, however, you must be able to ignore your home chores and complete them only during off-hours, just as you would if you were working in the office. Of course, part of this means separating your office from the home so you are not in the same room as the TV or the laundry.
Sara Scimeca is Marketing Coordinator for Synergy Builders, a stress-free remodeling company. She has two years of experience in the industry and manages Synergy’s marketing plans including creation of content for newsletters, brochures, advertisements, videos and more.