12 Tips To Help You Increase Work-From-Home Productivity

Working from home can increase your productivity and happiness if you have the right tips. Take a look at some of the best ways to boost work-from-home productivity.
12 Tips To Help You Increase Work-From-Home Productivity
Telecommuting, working from home, remote work – whatever you call it, the number of people who are doing it (either full-time or part-time when they need it) is at an all-time high. With that in mind, we know that lots of people out there are looking to increase their work-from-home productivity.

In this article you will find:

  • 12 Work From Home Productivity Tips
  • Frequently asked questions about work-from-home productivity

12 Tips To Increase Your Work-From-Home Productivity

Here are some real tips for supercharging your productivity while working from home:

1. Get started early

When working in an office, your morning commute can help you wake up and feel ready to work by the time you get to your desk. At home, however, the transition from your pillow to your computer can be much more jarring.

Believe it or not, one way to work from home productively is to dive into your to-do list as soon as you wake up. Simply getting a project started first thing in the morning can be the key to making progress on it gradually throughout the day. Otherwise, you'll prolong breakfast and let the morning sluggishness wear away your motivation.

2. Pretend like you are going into the office

The mental association you make between work and an office can make you more productive, and there's no reason that feeling should be lost when telecommuting.

When working from home, do all the things you'd do to prepare for an office role: Set your alarm, make (or go get) coffee, and wear nice clothes. Internet browsers like Google Chrome even allow you to set up multiple accounts with different toolbars on the top -- for example, a toolbar for home and a separate toolbar for work.

3. Structure your day like you would in the office

When working from home, you're your own personal manager. Without things like an in-person meeting schedule to break up your day, you can be quick to lose focus or burn out.

To stay on schedule, segment what you'll do and when over the course of the day. If you have an online calendar, create personal events and reminders that tell you when to shift gears and start on new tasks.

4. Choose a dedicated workspace

Just because you're not working at an office doesn't mean you can't, well, have an office. Rather than cooping yourself up in your room or on the couch -- spaces that are associated with leisure time -- dedicate a specific room or surface in your home to work.

5. Don't stay at home

Is your home office just not getting it done for you? Take telecommuting a step further and get out of the house. Coffee shops, libraries, public lounges, and similar Wi-Fi-enabled spaces can help you simulate the energy of an office so you can stay productive even when you don't sit in an official workplace.

6. Make it harder for yourself to mess around on social media

Social media is designed to make it easy for you to open and browse quickly. At work, though, this convenience can be the detriment of your productivity. To counteract your social networks' ease of use during work hours, remove them from your browser shortcuts and, according to Fast Company, log out of every account. You might even consider working primarily in a private or if you're using Chrome, an "Incognito" browser window. This ensures you stay signed out of all your accounts and each web searches you conduct doesn't autocomplete the word you're typing. It's a guarantee that you won't be tempted into taking too many social breaks during the day

7. Commit to doing more

Projects always take longer than you initially think they will. For that reason, you'll frequently get done less than you set out to do. So, just as you're encouraged to overestimate how much time you'll spend doing one thing, you should also overestimate how many things you'll do during the day. Even if you come up short of your goal, you'll still come out of that day with a solid list of tasks filed under 'complete.' "Our team has a daily standup meeting each morning where we share what we're working on for the day. On days I'm working from home, I tend to slightly overcommit to what I'll deliver that day. It helps keep me honest, so even if I get the urge to go do something else, I know I've already committed a certain amount of work to my team." Corey Wainwright

8. Work when you're at your most productive

Nobody sprints through their work from morning to evening -- your motivation will naturally ebb and flow throughout the day. When you're working from home, however, it's all the more important to know when those ebbs and flows will take place and plan your schedule around it.

To capitalize on your most productive periods, save your harder tasks for when you know you'll be in the right headspace for them. Use slower points of the day to knock out the easier, logistical tasks that are also on your plate.

9. Figure out a routine

We tend to think of a routine as a constraint at best, and a creativity killer at worst. Nevertheless, for a telecommuter, sticking to a routine can be extremely positive. Without one, it will be harder to stay productive and motivated.

It's tempting to think things like, “ When I telecommute, I will stay in my PJs all day and no one can stop me.” But doing this will remind you of relaxation time, not work time. A steady morning routine will help you separate the professional part of your day from the personal.

10. Take breaks

The most effective way for remote employees to stay productive, according to the Airtasker survey, was to take breaks (37%). The research found that office workers took shorter breaks than remote workers, though longer breaks have been shown to increase productivity Encourage your workers to get up every so often during the workday, especially when they're particularly drained or distracted, to grab a healthy snack, walk around their home, call a friend, meditate, etc.

Many people find success using the Pomodoro Technique, which follows this method:

  • Choose a task
  • Work on it for 25 minutes.
  • Put a checkmark on a sheet of paper after the 25 minutes are up.
  • Take a five-minute break. (This marks the completion of one "Pomodoro" sprint)
  • After every four Pomodoro sprints, take a longer break.

11. Match your music to the task at hand

During the week, music is the soundtrack to your career (cheesy, but admit it, it's true). And at work, the best playlists are diverse playlists -- you can listen to music that matches the energy of the project you're working on.

Video game soundtracks are excellent at this. In the game itself, this lyric-free music is designed to help you focus; it only makes sense that it would help you focus on your work as well.

12. Prepare your meals the night before

When you're in your own home, it can be tempting to spend time preparing a really nice breakfast and lunch for yourself, chopping and cooking included. Don't use precious minutes making your food the day of work -- cook it the night before. Preparing food ahead of time ensures you can actually use your meal times to eat, and that you aren't performing non-work tasks that spend energy better used at your desk.

People also ask these questions about productivity

Here are the answers to the most common questions about productivity:

1. How does working from home impact productivity?

Work-from-home productivity is an important issue for newly-remote workers. For years, office-bound employees have viewed working from home as the ideal when it came to flexible work arrangements and it's no wonder why. Less commuting, no office dress codes, and no more rigid 9 to 5 working hours are just a few of the perks most remote employees enjoy. On the other hand, working from home comes with its own unique challenges that can hamper productivity.

Most obviously, the number of distractions available to remote employees far exceeds those in a traditional office setting. From walking the dog, washing the dishes, and even watching TV, it's easy to find any number of excuses to put off work when you're home alone. Add a spouse, children, and pets into the mix, and the distractions and interruptions can multiply even more.

2. How do you manage productivity when working from home?

Ways to Enhance Employee Productivity while Working from Home :

  1. Encourage dedicated workstations.
  2. Equip your team with efficient tech and productivity tools
  3. Fix mutually agreed expectations
  4. Establish daily check-ins
  5. Maintain regular contact and make it a routine
  6. Trust your team members
  7. Set goals
  8. Give flexibility to your employees
  9. Provide them with opportunities for growth and upgrades
  10. Keep things transparent by providing them with regular feedback

Author Details

Written by:
Najeeb Khan
Head of Training & Events
Leadership Development, Team Training, Belonging, Diversity & Inclusion, & Innovation
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