5 Tricks to Get More Done While Working Remotely

Rodolphe Dutel
5 min readNov 7, 2014

In 2014, I became a full time remote worker…

Working from NYC

This year, I’ve been lucky to work & travel in Paris, Malaga, Copenhagen, Casablanca, London, Amsterdam, San Francisco, Barcelona…

There’s one question that’s always in the back on my mind:

How can I be as productive as possible remotely?

Well, joining our newsletter is a great start

I’ve tried many different experiments to do more in less time this year, and I thought I would share 5tricks that became part of my routine.

1) Reducing the noise

Work & learn more by minimizing distractions

Since April, AdBlock blocked a total of 62,439 Ads for me: I just love it ☺

that’s blocking 300+ Ads everyday!

Cognitive overload is an issue in our information dense world — it feels great to have (a little) more control on it all!

//2017 Update: AdBlock has now blocked 368,250 Ads for me!

2) Saving instead of Clicking

“Hey buddy, you’re gonna love this article!”

Here’s an example: It’s Tuesday, 11am — I’m working away on a project, when Twitter prompts something of interest…

Oh, man, I’m interested! Let me just click and see what it’s all about…

…No, wait a minute, I’ve been in this situation hundreds of time: I’m about to click away and lose my focus…

Yes, I want to read this article! And if I read it now, I’ll lose my focus for sure! Instead, I add content to Pocket, it bookmarks things on all devices — I then review it in my own time.

3) Organizing information

“Yep, I saw that on her blog!”

I’m currently trying to shy away from Mainstream news to focus on content that really interests me ☺

Feedly is a great home for the 141 blogs/publications I follow, sorting them by categories makes it super easy to read and keep track of my friends, interests and work-related topics!

Channeling RSS Feeds through Feedly

Once a week, I explore what is saved in Pocket or Feedly and decide whether I want to read, share and/or save those articles.

Buffer (I currently work there!) help me organize content to be shared multiple times, across various profiles easily:

I’m posting 23 times a day on average across all my profiles and projects.

Buffer’s Campaign Scheduler

4) Keep on Learning

“You need to read this book!…”

If Warren Buffet can still make time to read, I figure I can do that too, especially when engaging in those longer commutes.

My colleagues love to read, they always have great recommendations,

When I find something interesting, I go ahead and YouTube proof it:

Do I enjoy this topic enough to spend 5–10 hours reading about it?

Speed-watching a video (2x speed) on the topic helps me find out,

Watching videos at 2x speed — YouTube.com

Ok, that’s my kind of book! Now what?

Highlighting — kindle.amazon.com

Kindle reading is awesome! One of my favourite things is to Highlight parts I like so that I can reference back to it later on.

Equally awesome, I recently got addicted to Audible.com:

Most audio books I found are 6 to 9-hour long,

You can listen to them at 3x speed…

Going through an entire book through a flight, or a single afternoon:

Audible.com — Amazon”s audiobook platform

Be advised that 3x listening requires your full attention…

5) Concentration flow

How long should you spend on any given task?

I’m a big fan of allowing myself a given time box, say 20 minutes, to send an email or make progress on a project (like writing this article), it helps me spend the right amount of time on projects: no more, no less.

Timeboxing on Moosti.com

“Timeboxing allocates a fixed time period to each planned activity”

Also, I love to listen to music when I’m working. Very often, I hum along or simply sing out loud! An option I found to listen to music and stay focus is to use focusatwill.com to keep a musical background that helps do more:

Listening to focusatwill.com

focus@will is a new neuroscience based music service”

What changed?

Getting organized helped me being either on or off and reducing my “idle time”, while still learning new things everyday.

Tea time @ Samovar, San Francisco

What’s your balance?

Do you have any tips to share? I would love to hear how y’all get organized to get more done!

Interested in Remote Working?

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& Feel free to connect on Twitter: @rdutel



Rodolphe Dutel

Founder at @remotiveio | Prev. Director of Operations at @Buffer