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Working from home?

Working from home has plenty of perks, but keeping your work on schedule takes a lot of discipline. We had a chat to two women who've made their home their office and asked them for some advice on staying productive, meeting deadlines, and avoiding the snooze button.

It's important to be disciplined about your work hours and manage your time effectively. When planning how you'll spend your time, build in buffers for the things that can trip you up in terms of delivery, to be safe. It's also worth playing to your strengths, so consider outsourcing time-intensive work you may be less good at to leave you free to focus on your core business. Lastly, when things are quiet, remember that you can still use the time to strategize and look for opportunities.


Merridy Edgson, Accredited Leadership Coach and Facilitator

Discipline is crucial I've learned the hard way that 8 hours can fly past. It's easy to get caught up with the day-to-day tasks of being on the phone, answering emails and checking various social media accounts for work, but I've still got to make sure that I get clients' assignments done on time. When you work for yourself, no work means no pay so losing focus can really impact on your business. I make sure my deadlines are met by creating weekly and daily plans. Over weekends I prepare a schedule of tasks for each of my clients for the following week and allocate days for the work. Then, each night I check my dairy for the next day's work, and prioritise the tasks.

"Shirley Williams, Durban-based Marketing Consultant and Publicist

If you're planning on working from home, remember these tips:

  • Block off your work hours
  • Take the time to plan your weeks and days ahead it'll save you time in the long run
  • Build in a little buffer time for key deadlines
  • Outsource non-core work if necessary
  • Time really is money; keep your eye on what boosts the bottom line to maintain focus, and prioritise your tasks accordingly
  • Use quiet times to strategize and look for new opportunities

Business insured with 1st for Women? You could already be saving time and money by using the 1st for Women Business service, included with your policy at no extra cost. Visit www.ffwbusiness.co.za or call 0860 83 84 85 to access a personal assistant service, financial and legal advice, procurement officer service, and more. 

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