The freelancing industry is slowly yet steadily growing. Nowadays, more talented individuals and tech companies become more open to the idea of working and hiring remote employees. In fact, among the big organizations (with 1000+ employees) from all over the world, 20% of them employ at least 30% remote workers. And from these freelancers around the world, 70% of them are juggling at least 2 to 4 projects at a time. With so many tasks to manage, anxiety tends to affect freelancer productivity.
But thanks to technology, freelancing can be done more efficiently, with more and more productivity apps now made available online. Apart from using a freelancer productivity tracker and project management tools, there are other things that you can practice to improve freelancer productivity.
Schedule Your Tasks and Manage Your Time
If you are among the many freelancers who are handling more than one project at a time, it’s essential that you learn to manage your time. Set up a schedule for each of your work. If it’s necessary that you render some hours per day for each of your work, consider dividing your daily work hours according to what you need to accomplish on each project. If you have urgent tasks, you should manage your time to make sure that you get to complete that work immediately and still be able to render hours for your other projects.
Focus on One Task at a Time
The idea of multitasking has been proven to be an ineffective method when it comes to improving efficiency. Instead of helping you get things done properly, multitasking actually means that you are doing more than one task in rapid succession within a short span of time. By doing so, you are limiting your ability to think deeper about an action, which can affect your coherence of the tasks at hand. The best way to tackle your to-do list is to focus on one task at a time. Once you are done with one task, you can then move on to another.
Use a Kanban Board to Monitor Tasks
As a part of your productivity and project management tools, a Kanban board can be a very useful addition if it is something that you are not using yet. Through a Kanban board, you can easily create Kanban cards for each of your tasks, monitor their progress and identify which works in progress (WIPs) are aging. By using a Kanban board, you can visualize how heavy or light your load maybe and you’ll be able to manage each of your projects better. Apart from organizing your tasks, the Kanban method can also be a great tool for improved communication between you and your clients. If this is something that they are not yet practicing, you can easily create a Kanban board for each of your clients and share each board with them. This will make it easy and more convenient for each party to monitor the progress of your tasks.
Manage and Eliminate Distractions
With so many things pending on your plate, you should try to not be pulled away by any of the distractions at home. One of the downsides of working from home, it’s easy for you to get distracted. There’s social media, gadgets, Netflix, house chores, etc. And if you’ve got kids or pets that demand your attention, every now and then, staying focused can sometimes be a challenge. What you can do is to set up a home office where you can isolate yourself from any sort of distraction at home.
Keep Your Work Desk Organized
Another aspect of work that some freelancers take for granted is the organization of their work desk. Keeping your desk clean and organized can help boost your morale and productivity. If you don’t know how to start, here are some helpful tips on how to set up your freelance office for the most productivity:
- Regularly wipe off any dust and dirt accumulating on your desk’s surface. This will help keep the air around your work desk clean and free from irritants.
- Keep all of your work gadgets and tools in order.
- Organize the wires and connections to your work computer so that you won’t have to struggle on using your mouse, chargers, and other connectors that you need to get your work done.
- If possible, maintain a minimalistic approach when it comes to organizing your work desk. If it’s not important for your work, you might as well put it somewhere else. Less clutter means less eye sore.
Take Care of Your Health
Apart from keeping your focus, managing distractions and organizing your work tools, your health and safety should also be a top priority. A healthy mind and body translates to an improved freelancer productivity. One of the challenges of working from home is that you tend to be physically latent. With less activities to commit to, less social interactions, and without the need to always look your best, you may tend to become cooped up in your own home. You may be too focused on getting work done, and sometimes, you might lose track of time, forget to eat on time, get less hydration and nutrition, and you may tend to lose sleep, too. In order to stay healthy, here are some things that you might want to practice:
- Take breaks regularly. Try the Pomodoro technique wherein you use a timer to break down work into 25-minute intervals, separated by short 5-minute breaks;
- Eat healthy food on time and drink water regularly;
- Take regular restroom breaks as neeeded. Avoid holding it in as this can cause a number of health problems;
- Stretch or practice some seated yoga poses;
- Avoid eye strain by practicing the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes that you spent looking at a computer screen, you should look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
By following these productivity tips for freelancers, you can easily enhance your efficiency and be able to accomplish more tasks, no matter how many projects you may be managing at the moment. If you are looking for better initiatives on how to improve as a freelancer, use Kanban Zone as one of your freelancer productivity tools. Through this visual project management tool, you can easily automate tasks and communications, scale your projects and get things done accordingly, altogether making it easy for your to improve your productivity as a freelancer.