Here in the South specifically Georgia, snow days are a small gift and normally a giant headache. As displayed during the great Snowpocalypse of 2014 snow is our enemy, and it will shut us down quickly. Therefore most of our companies and businesses have a contingency plan specifically labeled "emergency snow panic protocol" or something like that.
My previous company wanted us to work from home during our snow days and try and keep productivity up. I totally understand this and I am all for it in moderation. Problem was they didn't pay for our phones or computers and being a telemarketing based company I personally was not paying for all the calls to Hawaii, especially since they weren't offering reimbursement. However my current company is snow day proof since I work completely from home and they pay for everything. Therefore I thought since I'm in the practice of working from home every day I'd share some of my personal guidelines.
- DO NOT TURN ON THE TV. Seriously don't do it, you think you'll only watch for 5 minutes. But it will be on the rest of the day as background noise and a constant distraction. Instead if you need background noise pick music or open a window (provided you won't get hypothermia) - but don't visually stimulate yourself away from your work.
- Carve out a lunch hour and 15 minute breaks every few hours. If you try and bum rush work and plow your way through it it become monotonous. And once it becomes monotonous you become easily distracted again. I personally give myself 60-90 minutes for lunch where I detox away from my laptop. Then I normally go to my Keurig once every few hours and this is my break. I'll walk the pups or just take a few moments to look away from my computer. It keeps me from zoning out while working.
- Set goals - so you're only working from home for 2 days? Great set goals that you'd like to make while you're being productive from the house. I normally use a post it and leave it on my laptop. Since I'm in recruitment my goals are normally 3 presentations and 1 business development meeting set up. This way I'm sending out QUALITY candidates and still keeping my job pipeline going. I'm much more quality than quantity motivated and I think when working from home that's a big distinction. It's to send out a lot of fluff, but when working from home you can maximize your time. Send out quality and your work hours can be much shorter.
- Stand up, when working from home you have the opportunity to set yourself in a place in your home and work from there. I personally work at my dining room table since it's bar height I can stand for a while then sit then stand again. This keeps the blood flowing and it allows me to feel a little less stuffed into a desk. I actually really really love it. So pick a place that you're comfortable in and that you can get some movement out of.
- Use your breaks to be productive. My coffee breaks are 15/20 minutes long and I love them. I normally out the K cup in and walk the pups while it's brewing. Then I'll come in doctor the coffee and try and find something to do that makes me feel productive. Whether it's sweeping real quick, snapping a few photos of the pups, editing a post, or browsing pinterest for ideas. This allows me to be productive outside of work and it makes me feel more fulfilled. Why? I have no idea but it works and it let's me stay focused on my job when I'm in the zone.
Those are my methods and I hope they help. As someone ho has survived Snowpocalypse and now works from home I can say I LOVE it. But it does definitely take some adjusting to and some will power. Good luck and stay warm!