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Last month, we shared some best practices for marketers working from home amid COVID-19. The work-from-home process isn’t something that everyone will be used to, which is why we’ve found it helpful to brush up on some helpful guidelines and practices. Here are some additional best practices for your marketing team working remotely during COVID-19.
Schedule your day to filter out potential work distractions
Some of the biggest obstacles remote workers face are distractions. In an era of technology at every turn—such as phones, TV, internet browsing, and even your own refrigerator—there are dozens of potential interruptions to your workflow. This also includes regular check-ins via email from clients and marketing team members as well.
It’s important to understand that response times will inevitably be delayed during COVID-19. You aren't expected to immediately respond to every email you receive as soon as it appears. In fact, this may even cause additional distractions. Consider what your thought process may be when seeing a notification in your inbox, reading it, and then typing out a response; this is a small deviation away from your current task. It might seem small, but when this becomes a habit, other distractions can easily follow.
Some people have a natural tendency to seek distractions that cause them to procrastinate. If you are a former student, you may be familiar with the inconvenient desire to put off work until the last minute (we've all been there before!) Here are a few ways you can schedule your workday to avoid this:
- Limit yourself to the number of emails you respond to within an hour of time. Naturally, there may be an urgent message you need to look into right away, but if a response can wait, try to limit yourself to around 3 emails per hour if possible.
- Focus on one task at a time. When you separate your day into time blocks for each task, it helps build a structure around your schedule. This also allows you to keep better track of what you’ve accomplished during the day as opposed to bits and pieces of multiple tasks you’ve chipped away at.
- Reward yourself after work hours. Yes, that’s right! Give yourself some credit; working from home can be difficult. When you’ve had the time to accomplish your daily tasks and truly given it your all, take some time after work to indulge in some hobbies. Whether you enjoy baking, playing music, crafting, or drawing, be sure you have something to look forward to at the end of the day.
Set up a proper office space, but don’t be afraid to move around as needed!
Not everyone has a dedicated office in their home or apartment to use for their work. There are many who may find themselves struggling to set up a proper location to use while they work throughout the day. The key to a successful workspace isn't just about convenience or what feels most like an “office;” it’s about what feels comfortable from a physical and mental perspective. No, this doesn’t mean working on your laptop from bed all day (as cozy as that may sound!) Rather, you want your workspace to be somewhere that has regular access to sunlight from outside, an acceptable temperature, and comfortable seating.
Marketing teams—especially those in smaller agencies—may be used to working within a single room with their team members at their own cubicles or desks. It’s a location we’ve all gotten used to having as our dedicated “work” station—and for some, leaving the office means leaving work behind for the day. However, working from within your own home can cause some challenges with your work-life balance. This can be seen when specific rooms in your house become full-time work stations; a strict deadline or complex marketing project can cause certain rooms to feel like negative spaces.
You want to be sure that the room you are dedicating as your workspace isn’t somewhere you’ll also be spending a lot of time in after-hours. In other words, your bedroom or living room may not be the best place to dedicate as a work station. Likewise, you also have the ability to move to different rooms throughout the day for a change of atmosphere. While you don't want to move around too much (for fear of getting back into those distractions we mentioned), it does provide a different setting to help break up repetition and ensure your creative mind stays active.
With these best practices, your marketing team will be able to get the most out of their workday and build a strong work-life balance. This a difficult time, but we’re in this together! If you would like to reach out to thinkdm2 about how we’re handling business and communication during COVID-19, please feel free to contact us. For additional marketing insights and stats from some of the industry’s top experts, please click below to view our infographic.