Collaboration & Motivation While WFH

Tuesday, August 4th, 2020|

As we continue to navigate the ‘work from home’ sphere, one that might be new for many of us, we must maintain clear communication with other members of our team. Although it may feel impersonal to communicate through a screen, the technology at our fingertips and the resources it provides allows us to communicate intuitively and efficiently, avoiding any misunderstandings that arise when we cannot meet in person. 

Open communication: As is often the problem with technologically-mediated communication, the meaning of something can be lost or misconstrued. Therefore, open communication is now more important than ever. This can mean anything from being clear about expectations for a certain project to outlining deadlines and expressing obstacles that crop up along the way. Knowing what your team needs from you, and being honest about your ability to fulfill that need allows for more effective collaboration.  Collaboration tools such as Trello, Jira, or Basecamp come in handy to review progress and set expectations.  

Keep in touch with team members: There are many efficient ways to keep your team accountable when managing a WFH group. For example, programs like Slack or Monday.com help communicate with teams at-large, manage tasks, and organize multiple projects occurring at once. Slack, for example, allows you to communicate with single members of your team or specific groups of people working on certain tasks. It also allows you to create ‘channels’ for certain projects, where different members can post documents, raise questions, or provide updates. When possible, hop on a quick Zoom video call to connect, or use Loom to record an explainer video.

Time management: Managing one’s time while working from home can be increasingly challenging when it feels like work-life and home-life are merging into one without clearly defined boundaries. However, it is important to set priorities for oneself to manage tasks efficiently. To set priorities, it is crucial to understand the bigger picture or the larger goal your team has. This is yet another reason why clear communication is so important. By understanding what it is your team is trying to achieve, you can prioritize your tasks to efficiently contribute to that end goal. 

Self-motivation: As many of us have adapted to the WFH lifestyle, there has been some concern about keeping motivated and on task when working from home. Setting clear expectations and a work-life-home-life separation is imperative for holding ourselves accountable for the work that must be completed. This begins with overcoming procrastination

Home-life places obstacles in the way of productivity–children, pets, making dinner, laundry, cleaning random cabinets– allowing procrastination to be a constant temptation. One way to stop procrastinating is to simply remove distractions. For example, if your phone distracts you, turn it off and place it in a random drawer in your house, thereby requiring a greater amount of energy to reach it, making it less of a distraction. You can also mitigate the procrastination temptation by using reward-based motivation. For example, tell yourself that after you finish your project you will be able to use your phone again. Giving yourself a reward after each task you complete will foster greater motivation to do so. 

We are all in this together and knowing how to function within our “new normal” will allow us to continue progressing forward even when our world has been put on pause. 

We hope you’ve enjoyed the 566th issue of our a.blog

Overcoming Procrastination

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2019|

Procrastination is one of the greatest enemies of creativity. There’s an inherent paradox in procrastination – when we habitually procrastinate, we can often use more of our energy than it would take to simply do the work. And yet, even some of the most successful creatives struggle with procrastination.

In order to thrive in the digital age, creative professionals, as well as entrepreneurs and managers, must be able to work independently. Fortunately, we can all cultivate our inner self-motivated self-starters when we learn tools and techniques for conquering procrastination. When we learn to “get in the flow,” we can overcome our own procrastinator tendencies and bring our best, most inspired thinking to the fore.

Supplement Your Will Power

“If you imagine that motivation is like the fuel that gets you to your outcome, some fuels are very good, but others are lower quality,” says sports psychologist Ian Taylor. The sheer force of will can sometimes get you to the finish line, but in order to score consistent wins and improve your habits, you may need higher-octane support.

Visualize Positive Outcomes

When it comes to transcending these counterproductive tendencies, a winning mindset is key. In practice, this can take the form of imagining, in detail, the way your experience will change when you’ve completed the tasks in front of you. If the stress and guilt of procrastination only makes things worse, try giving yourself some positive motivation, and use your imaginative abilities to make your sense of impending reward as clear and vivid as you can.

Reduce Friction

To make things easier on yourself, eliminate any obvious impediments and distractions to doing your work. You can set aside less pressing obligations to deal with later. You can shut off phone notifications, or even try a full digital detox. You can find new collaboration tools or project management software that plays to your strengths. When you start by creating the right environment to encourage your most inspired deep work, you can beat procrastination before it starts.

Reward Yourself

You can always look forward to the relief of completing your work and the satisfaction of achieving your goals. Research indicates that immediate short-term rewards can be more powerful motivators. If you need some help staying on track, try taking periodic breaks, or find imaginative ways to make your process more pleasant as you go.

Keep It Positive

To stay motivated, focus on the benefits of following through on your work, the rewards of a job well done, the interest and passion that motivated you to undertake this work in the first place. Override your brain’s negativity bias, and you’ll find that procrastination is nothing to fear, just another challenge you can overcome with mindful behavior and an empowered mindset.

At Artisan Creative, we love to see our talent and clients get more from their projects, lives, and careers. Contact Artisan today to start the conversation!

We hope you’ve enjoyed our 544th a.blog.