4 Ways to Create A Productive Work-At-Home Environment

Working from home is a dream for most, and a reality for many. There are many jobs that require time commitments from home. Even if you work at a brick-and-mortar job, you will want to expand your abilities and expertise by honing your work-at-home skills.


Work at home mom with baby

Years ago, when my kids were 1 and 3 years old, working from home was out of the question. The little ones couldn’t understand why daddy couldn’t play whenever it wasn’t nap time, and their playful noises weren’t conducive to a professional sounding environment. Today however, things have changed. With the kids in school, I much prefer working from home.

If you’re planning on working some or all of your time from home, here are some thoughts that you might want to adhere to if you want to be more productive.

Don’t be too Informal While Working from Home:

It’s easy to slip into a productive state of mind when you treat your work at home as if you were at the office. This typically requires you to go through your normal morning routine of exercise, shower and dressing as if you were heading for the office. However, at home you can be a bit lax – dress pants or skirt and a dress shirt or blouse will suffice. You can even work from home with your socks on. Once done, you can change clothes and do your other activities. This will help you create the sense of “clocking out” of work.

Create an Effective Workspace:

You do not necessarily need to have a dedicated room when it comes to working from home. A corner of your living room, bedroom, or garage will suffice. As long as the area accommodates your tools, it will be appropriate. Also take note of your own preferences. Some people like to work alone, others in groups. You can simulate the group environment by working at a coffee shop or café with your laptop and mobile devices.

Use Time Tracking Software:

You obviously need to keep track of your time to make sure that you are meeting your deadlines and working efficiently to meet them. To take into account how many hours it will take for you to complete your tasks, time yourself. You can use a stopwatch or any of the many apps and software programs designed to help you do that on your computer and smart phone.

Take Frequent Breaks:

The Pomodoro technique is a popular way of increasing work output. This technique requires you to work in 25 minute increments separated by short breaks. The thought behind the Pomodoro technique is that you will improve mental agility by including frequent breaks. This method can also help reduce mental fatigue.

If you need more guidance on work-at-home productivity, feel free to contact me. You might also follow me @willsherwood.

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This article is published by Will Sherwood | The Sherwood Group |Website Design | Graphic Design | Marketing Communications: The Sherwood Group has over 30 years of experience working with all sorts of companies, small and large. Our clients range from entrepreneurs to Fortune 500 firms, in nearly every business sector, from across the street to around the world (and yes, even Europe, China, and South America). Our goal is to create advertising,  graphic design, website design, and marketing communication that still looks fresh and relevant 10-15 years later. Our mission is to stir your imagination and leave your competition shaken and wondering,  Now what do we do?”  We are located in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

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Please comment. We’d like to know if you found this article informative or helpful?


  • By Rémy Rodriguez 27 Mar 2014

    I often work at home, because in my work I travel a lot.

    Several rules, as Brian and many others I have my space for me in the house (which is a feat with a large family, and I have even a small sofa bed).

    I noticed that I was much more effective in the early morning, when the household was still asleep.

    Another simple rule for family members when I am in my office, I am not in jail, they can come see me but still asking (or by making account alone) if they can bother me or not.
    When I’m having a confcall I make an announce ! for that at this moment there is not too much noise in the house (or my daughter playing guitar!).

    It also requires a lot of discipline and a high level of concentration.

  • By Benoit Mercier 27 Mar 2014

    For me the key is to have a quiet dedicated space. Focusing on deliverables will ensure your productivity, and you do have to make an extra effort in terms of networking.

  • By Morris Vucia Amule 08 Apr 2014

    Brilliant idea & very inspirational. I’ve ever tried working at home but all in vein & today I call myself a very lucky person. Surely I’ve grasped some of the things that had let me not succeed from home.

  • By Jacqueline Green 14 Apr 2014

    I have found that I need to train my family as well as myself on boundaries. When I am in my office, I am there to work. Although, I love when my husband or one of the kids comes in to give me a hug or talk about their day, it is really disruptive and I need to be able to say no, nicely. Without those boundaries, I would get little done.

  • By Mihaela 16 Apr 2014

    I’ve been working from home for more than a year now and although it was difficult at the beginning, I disciplined myself. I try to wake up at the same hour every day and follow a certain routine. Breakfast, get myself coffee, good music and work, work, work… And I’m not stopping until afternoon. My friends know that I work from home and they now treat it as full time job and don’t visit me or call me during the week, just as they wouldn’t if I was away from home, working in an office.

    I admit, guilty at “pajamas after lunchtime” point, but by that time I usually go through a lot of stuff. Also, I try not to work after 6 PM unless it’s something very very urgent.

    It’s all about discipline, it has certain disadvantages but most of the time, there are a lot of advantages!