The only things we can count on right now is change at home and at work. That is the current situation with working from home and working at the office. There is an evolving hybrid work plan in most companies with days at home and days in the office. As the uncertainty continues, start planning now for your organizing and productivity in hybrid work spaces.
Tools of the trade
Start with trusted tools for your work, at home, office or hybrid. Your access to these tools ensures your success regardless of the location. Good organization makes it easy to transition between work spaces.
- Pick a planner that works for you. You may choose digital as the way to go with planners and documents. Thanks to Microsoft we can access Outlook in the cloud and on multiple devices. It’s easy to access online wherever you are and have alerts pop up on your devices as reminders. With Google and gmail, there is a suite of options available to assist you with planning your time and managing your resources. If a paper planner is what is best for you, the Planner Pad gives you options for yearly, monthly, and weekly scheduling. There is space for notes and strategies for list making. You can add a TUL notebook for extra notes.
- Create multiple sets of organizing supplies needed for work. That includes cords, chargers, pencils or any other supply you use frequently. Having these in both work spaces eliminates frustration and helps you get started on your work. A well established set up helps you get started on work. If you need an additional set in your car that can help too!
- Choose a work bag with compartments. One compartment is dedicated to your device, another to supplies, another to cords and chargers. Keep it compact and easy to carry. Use your setting up time as a an initiation strategy for work. Be sure to pack you bag each night in preparation for your transition to the office.
If you have lists of lists, it is time to think about a project management tool. Whatever the tool, it has to be easy to capture and categorize tasks. There are strategies like Getting Things Done with categorized lists or Kanban with To Do, Doing and Done. Asana, Trello and Click Up are digital tools to create and categorize tasks. Whichever tool you choose, your frequency of use and agility with the tool make the difference.
Managing time and energy
The more you use your planner, the more productive you will be. It is your guide for work. Add every event consistently and use your Weekly Planning Time effectively. Use your weekly planning time to assess in what space you will be most productive given the work that week. The variety of spaces can be a bonus in productivity. Add a 30 minute recap time each evening to be sure you have added dates and information that came via email, text and other communication.
It seems like the amount of time we have and the speed at which things are happening are changing. This change feels unsettling. Have you notice how everything, from school drop off to meeting times, take longer? Take this information and add extra time for this and transition time into your schedule. Be sure you have accounted for the extra steps that we don’t remember like parking your car and walking to the office.
There is a greater need for empathy as hybrid work unfolds. Everyone is “going through something” right now and that empathy will help support you and those around you. Take extra steps to share how things are today, since every day is very different right now. Expect that some days you are going to need Plan B and C to feel productive.
Your home and office teams are going to need more support with general communication. Now is the time that family meetings are especially valuable. As things change so do responsibilities at home. Be sure your home team works well together by creating partnerships. Take extra steps to communicate goals and deadlines with easy to use visual tools such as charts. Be sure to include deliverables, responsible parties and deadlines. Share these frequently to help your colleagues manage deadlines and work in chunks.
Incorporating self care
Transitions create evolving self care. The bandwidth you have depends on the self care you do. Continued self care will help you through this transition and other changes that are coming daily. Be sure to calendar in the time you end the day and the days you will take off for vacation. If possible, give yourself the gift of one day to have no plan or time line.
Your mobility is a positive for energy and productivity. Your agility is an asset as you move between spaces to use the energy of that space to get work done. Being organized helps with high energy, positivity and productivity. It is all a work in progress as we transition, find patterns and look at new ways to be productive in multiple environments. Most importantly give yourself time to adjust and ample self care.