Remote work has become a major part of modern business operations for a great many companies, but there is also a difficulty that frequently comes into play with remote work: the phenomenon of overwork. Let’s review some tips to help minimize the risk of overwork as people continue remote work.
First Off: Yes, Overwork is an Issue
There are a lot of workplace challenges that remote work has brought to light beyond overwork, many of which are too deep and divisive to really broach into here—including wage inequality and racial imbalances in the workplace, for instance. However, while these issues can be too much of a challenge for us to properly address in this format, the one that overwork presents is different.
Overwork can have significant impacts on the welfare of a business’ employees in many different ways. Employees can feel fatigued, anxious, and experience a variety of other physical symptoms like headache, pain, and vision problems. In addition to this, it can wreak havoc upon interpersonal relationships… and all of this is for nothing because overworking can actually diminish a person’s productivity due to their increased fatigue and depressed performance.
This all exacerbated when the pandemic forced more businesses than ever into remote work practices, with a far larger number of people suffering from the emotional stress and pressure that remote work can lead to.
So… what can be done about overworking, even when the work is being done remotely?
How to Help Diminish Remote Overwork
While you obviously can’t go to each remote worker’s house and check in on them, there are a few policies that can help decrease overworking in general—helping to reduce the phenomenon in-house and remotely at the same time.
1. Support the Use of a Schedule
…and not just a schedule dictating work hours, either. Establishing a workday routine that starts when one gets up and ends when one goes to bed (not just one that lays out the time spent actively working) can help immensely, as it generates a habit of starting and ending work at consistent (and appropriate) times. This consistent schedule will help reinforce the limits you want the workday to have.
2. Use Time Tracking Tools
Time tracking is another great way to help keep your team from overworking, as they’ll have a reference to where they are in the day in terms of their tasks. Plus, with a visual reminder of what they have on their plate already, your team members will be that much more cognizant of their limits. Wolk9IT can help you acquire these tools, so don’t hesitate to reach out.
3. Encourage Your Team to Speak Up
Finally, you need to empower your team to let you know when their work requirements are starting to overcome them. If they are feeling overburdened and afraid to say no to additional tasks, they’ll be more likely to take on more and more and dig themselves a deeper hole. Make sure they know that they can approach you about these concerns before they get to that point.
From the tools that your team uses to work, to those that help you manage when your team does its work, Wolk9IT is here to help you put them to use. Give us a call at (646) 741-1166 to learn more.