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Top Tips for Successfully Working from Home

How can you improve your productivity when working from home? With many companies shifting to more flexible workplaces, employees and business owners have to learn how to be successful working from home. Remote work offers many benefits — and several unique challenges.

Some work is simply best done in person, but a McKinsey report found that around 25% of work can be done from home without losing productivity. Here are our top work from home (WFH) tips for a better workflow.

A view of a home-based office with desktop monitor and laptop on the desk.

Establish a Workspace

Defining a workspace in your home can help anchor you. Setting up a mindful space can increase focus and improve your outcomes:

  • Set up lighting to keep your space bright for higher energy levels and better video chat optics.
  • Choose an ergonomic chair and keyboard to increase comfort and productivity while working.
  • Keep your space uncluttered to reduce subconscious distractions that increase mental fatigue.

Be Productive With Your Time

The goal is to work smarter and not harder or longer. You don't get bonus points for a never-ending workday.

Create a To-Do List: Physically writing/typing out the tasks you want to do for the day will help you prioritize your list. Set your top one or two tasks for the day and move down the list when you complete those tasks.

Note Productive Times: If you are more productive first thing in the morning, right after your coffee or right before dinner time, take note! Use your naturally productive time to get your biggest projects or hardest tasks out of the way.

Adjust During Less Productive Times: During the post-lunch dip, you are likely to feel extra tired and become less productive. It may be ideal to take a break or increase your activity level during the afternoon lull.

Set a Start and End to Your Day: Don't get caught in the exhausting never-ending-business-day loop of being on-call 24-7. You can't physically leave your office to create that space, so you have to intentionally set an End of Business Day (EoB) and stick to it for your mental health.

Communicate Effectively

If you have peers, co-workers, partners, clients or management to work with, then a high level of communication will be a key part of your success. Working from home can create a barrier between parties, making it crucial you focus on increasing communication for positive working relationships.

  • Define the best way for others to reach you (email, chat, video conference)
  • Respond to emails quickly (ideally, within the hour or by EoB)
  • Communicate when you don't know something and need to search for an answer
  • Email a morning reminder prompt if you are waiting on action from others
  • Talk louder, slower, and with more expression when on video chat
  • Get a hands-free headset for clearer calls and improved productivity

Take Care of Yourself

Reports have found that productivity often increases among remote workers — but so does burnout and feelings of anxiety. The best way to improve your workday will start with improving self-care:

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