Working From Home: 3 Tips For Increasing Productivity

23-Mar-2020 11:00:00 / by The Insurance Institute

The Insurance Institute

Part 1 of a 3-part blog series


Working from home has become increasingly more common – your boss may have introduced flexible working, or you might have just started freelance work – or maybe, like many of us you find yourself working from your home as a result of the Coronavirus. Whatever your reason, if it’s a new experience to you then you may be struggling to stay productive. Many people report that having some structures in place can help with productivity – so here are a few tips to ensure you get the most out of your working day.


Make a to-do list every day and tell people about it!

We all know how satisfying it can be when you start ticking tasks off your to-do list. Making a daily list of actions to be completed will help you focus on the job at hand and also frame your thinking for the day ahead. A to-do list can also give you a clear vision of what productivity looks like for you and what you want to achieve before close of business.

There can be an element of freedom and independence with working from home, but you don’t want to get too comfortable or even complacent. One of the best ways to make sure you’re staying on top of your daily task list is to tell people about it. If you know people are expecting you to deliver on your deadlines then you’ll be more likely to crack on and get it done ASAP.

Making a to-do list will also help you to coordinate with your colleagues, which is very important when you’re not physically together in the office. Having a set list of actions will help inform others of where you are at with particular projects and will keep them updated on your progress.

Top Tip: try getting your team to use project management tools such as Asana.


2. Organise your work space

Organising your work space is one of the best ways to increase productivity. Having everything you need at arm’s length will enable you to keep going and not lose track while you wander off to find your favourite pen!

Also keeping a tidy work space is equally as important and has the ability to help you feel calmer and more prepared for your working day. It also might be worth organising your work space in the morning so as to start your day on the right foot!


3. Eliminate and reduce distractions (or set aside time for distractions you cannot avoid)

While working from home it’s likely that you’ll have some distractions throughout the day, this could be anything from roommates coming home early, pets looking for attention or even just Instagram notifications pinging every 20 minutes. Distractions are everywhere and it’s sometimes unavoidable, but making a plan to reduce these distractions will help keep you on your productive pathway.

If possible, use headphones to block out any unwanted noise, turn off your phone, or if work prevents you from doing that, switch off notifications for apps that aren't related to your day job.

For distractions that are unavoidable, set aside time for them. For example, add ‘walk the dog’ onto your to-do list and set a time for this task during lunch time!

This is part 1 of our 3 part 'Working From Home' blog series. Keep an eye on our Instagram account for part 2 and 3!