How to Stay Productive When Telecommuting

Have you started telecommuting to work recently? Research shows that around 4% of all workers in the United States either partially or fully telecommute. While working from the comfort of your home offers a myriad of perks, it often comes at the cost of lower productivity. The good news is that you can stay productive when telecommuting by following these five tips.

Follow a Schedule

When telecommuting, you’ll typically have control over when you want to work. Maybe you prefer to work in the morning when it’s quiet, or perhaps you’re a night owl who prefers to work after the sun goes down. If you’re going to telecommute, though, you need to follow a schedule. Working erratic hours will only prevent you from falling into a rhythm that maximizes your productivity.

Block Out Distractions

It’s important to block out distractions when telecommuting. Not surprisingly, distractions are a leading cause of lost productivity for telecommuting workers. When you telecommute, your personal life when seemingly mix with your professional life. The blending of these elements can create distractions that hinder your ability to work in a productive manner. By blocking out distractions, your telecommuting productivity will increase.

Cut Back on Email

You can certainly use email to communicate with your peers, coworkers and other individuals, but you should be conscious of how much time you spend checking your inbox. According to Harvard Business Review (HBR), the average worker checks his or her inbox about once every 37 minutes. If this sounds familiar, you’ll waste an average of 21 minutes each day.

Create a To-Do List

A simple to-do list can improve your telecommuting productivity. With a to-do list, you’ll have a clear understanding of what tasks you need to accomplish and by when. The Ivy Lee method can help you create effective to-do lists. This age-old trick involves making a list of 10 tasks that you need to complete by the end of the following day and ranking those tasks according to importance.

Take Breaks

Overworking yourself will only result in a lower level of productivity. This applies to all types of workplaces, including your home office. Therefore, you should include breaks in your telecommuting schedule. A short 10-minute break every one or two hours will give your body, as well as mind, the opportunity to relax.

Have anything else that you’d like to add? Let us know in the comments section below!

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