The long-awaited moment has arrived: your boss has finally given you the go-ahead to do homeworking. It’s surely a dream come true! Now, it’s time to reassure your boss by showing that they were right to trust you. In other words, you need to be as productive at home as you are in the office (maybe even more so!). Dont’ worry, it is possible, as long as you adopt certain good habits.

Create a professional routine

You aren’t at the office anymore, so you can enjoy the freedom of choosing whatever room you want to work in as well as what you wear. That said, to be at your most productive, it is important to set certain boundaries right from the off. For example, it’s a good idea to choose a specific room in your house to turn into your new office: a space that is set aside for work. If you live in a small London flat and don’t have much space, demarcate your work space with a curtain: that helps too! Also, try not to wear your jogging bottoms every day. Obviously, you don’t have to put on a full suit and tie at 8:00 am when you’re only making trips between the meeting room and the kitchen – but, if you want to be productive, you need to create a professional environment. Dressing as if you were going to leave the house can help with this.

The importance of fixed (home)working hours

On a similar note, don’t forget that doing homeworking still involves having working hours. Not only does your boss expect you to work a certain number of hours, but you will also need to feel like you have done a full day of work, rather than using it as an excuse to have a long weekend. One of the best things about homeworking is that you are free to manage your schedule depending on your preferences and your own body clock. Prefer working at night? Or are you an early bird who can start work at 6:00 am? It’s up to you to decide, but don’t forget that, in order to be productive, you should consider your own natural rhythm.

Plan your day in detail

Setting your hours of work will not on its own ensure that your’e productive: you also need to plan what you’re going to do during the day. In other words, you need to set objectives – and attain them. But these goals should be achievable – don’t overstretch yourself. Three to four main aims per day is a good start. Then, as you gradually settle into your homeworking pattern, you will get to know your own work pace. In any event, it is important to make a to-do list every day and to try to stick to it as closely as possible. If you’ve ticked off all your tasks by the end of the day, you’ll get that feeling that you’ve made progress and, more importantly, youl’l also be productive and efficient in your work. If you have to attend to a meeting, take the opportunity to be outside the company and rent a meeting room !

Set goals to help you focus on whats’ most important

This might be common sense, but remember that when you set yourself a priority task, it’s important to give it all you’ve got. What we’re trying to say is, to be efficient and productive while working from home, you need to assess your tasks, prioritise them and then ensure that you stay as focused as possible. For example, if you’re a copywriter and your boss is expecting you to deliver a very important text for tomorrow, don’t clock off early to go and have a drink with your mates. Concentrate and write that text, bearing in mind that its’ a priority. But be wary of burnout, too – make sure that you take breaks during the day.

Take a breather during the day

No matter how busy your day is, don’t forget to take breaks, as they are also important for your productivity. Sometimes, it’s counterproductive staying glued to a task that you just can’t seem to finish at that time. The best thing to do is to take a breather: go outside, have a cup of tea and think about other things for a while. Once you’ve returned to your work, it will all fall into place and what seemed impossible ten minutes ago can now be done in seconds. So don’t forget: to be productive and efficient, you also need to rest from time to time.

Finally, remember that working from home is nearly always a solitary exercise in which your’e the boss, so it requires some serious self-discipline to be efficient and productive. Wev’e tried to give you some tips on this, but bear in mind that only you have the answers when it comes to finding the most productive working pattern for you.