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How To Boost Productivity When Working From Home

Posted 14 August 2023 by Helen Christie

Barratt London has partnered with interior designer Zara O’Hare to explore how workers can boost productivity when working from home…

Barratt London has surveyed 1,510 UK hybrid workers to shine a light on how the nation feels about sharing their home and workspace.

The study revealed that 76% agree that their relationship with their homes has changed since they started remote working. One in nine (11%) also admitted they’ve fallen out of love with their homes since the shift. Despite 49% using their extra time at home to do chores, a staggering 44% admit they still don’t have a designated workspace, and 58% are still fond of working from their beds. The full study can be read here.

For those who are looking for ways to improve their working from home etiquette, Barratt London partnered with interior designer Zara O’Hare from Land of Rugs to reveal her top tips for improving this.

Add elements of nature

"If you are feeling negatively impacted by your working from home setup then I suggest adding plants and incorporating biophilic design into your space. Studies have shown that exposure to nature can reduce stress levels and improve mental health, while people who work with natural elements are more productive than those who don't."

Optimise your space

“If you are working in a small space, optimising your desk setup is one of the most important things you can do.  Go for a wall-mounted desk or a corner desk to utilise space that might usually be neglected and use a monitor/laptop stand to keep the area tidy and free up space.”

“In a small area, utilising vertical space is a must. Installing shelves, wall-mounted organizers or a peg board above your desk will provide additional storage and keep essential items within reach without cluttering your desk.”

Natural lighting

“Maximising exposure to natural light will also help to make your space feel bigger. Use sheer or light-coloured curtains to increase light penetration and create an airy atmosphere. Natural light will help make the small space feel more open and spacious. Remove any clutter from your windows and ensure there are no obstructions.

"You can also consider enhanced lighting, as the more light that gets reflected around your house will make your room feel bigger and minimise any overcast shadows. You can also enhance your lighting by using brighter LED bulbs and adding ambient lighting such as lamps and fairy lights.”

Separate work and home devices

"One of the easiest ways to separate your workspace from your home is to have a separate area with separate devices. This means having a set place to do work, that you don't use unless it’s during your working hours. I would also make sure that you have a set of devices that stay in this area, such as a work phone and laptop/computer. This way, you won't have your work email and messages on your personal devices and will only look at them when you enter your workspace."

Hendon Waterside (Barratt London)

Uplifting colours

"If you are feeling demotivated when working from home then I suggest enhancing your work space with a fresh lick of paint. Colours play a massive effect on mood, and with most offices being white or grey, they are usually quite boring and dull. Opt for bright and uplifting colours such as yellows, greens, or blues. These colours can enhance your mood and create a refreshing environment."

"Upgrading your textiles is way to make small changes, updating things like curtains, cushions, rugs and throws can leave you with a sense of contentment and joy. However, make sure that you pick colours and patterns that resonate with you otherwise you will be second-guessing your choices the whole time which can make your room feel negative."

The study findings found that 50% of Brits have redecorated their homes since working from home.

Rearrange regularly

“How often you change your workspace comes down to personal preference. If you find that your motivation and productivity are waning, then it might be a good idea to consider rearranging your workspace. Changing your layout or bringing in new décor items can help to rejuvenate your motivation and bring you a fresh perspective of your workspace. You can change your workspace seasonally by incorporating seasonal décor, adjusting your lights to suit the change in daylight or rearranging your furniture to suit the seasonal ambience.”

“If you work in a creative area then I suggest that you change your workspace more often. Changing your workspace periodically can help stimulate new ideas and inspiration. Different layouts will create different atmospheres which can help to trigger creative thinking.”

Add personal touches

"Consider adding personal items to your space. Displaying photographs, artwork and other items that hold sentimental value will make your space feel more personal, comfortable and at ease. Another way to make your space more inviting is to add pleasant scents by using scented candles, diffusers or essential oils to create a pleasant aroma in your workspace."


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