Tag Archives: Work From Home

Pros and Cons of Working from Home

rp_Graphic-Design-300x199.jpgNowadays, many companies offer flexible work arrangements which allow some of their employees to work from home. Though working from home has many advantages, it also has some downsides.

Here are some of the advantages of working from home:

1. Cost cutting

Working from home allows you to avoid many of the costs related to traveling to work. This includes commuting costs such as fuel, car maintenance, parking fees and road tolls. In addition, it saves you from indirect costs such as buying professional outfits. If you have children, working from home can help you to avoid costs related to child care.

2. Minimal distractions

Most people who work in company offices have to put up with interruptions such as unnecessary meetings and banter from colleagues. Working from home allows you to focus on your tasks without having to deal with such distractions.

3. Flexibility

Working from home gives you the freedom to set your own working hours. This means that you can schedule time to handle other important issues such as child care. In addition, it allows you to create a working environment which suits you best. You can set the temperature, lighting and ambience which will enhance your productivity.

4. Proximity to family

Most people that have to go to work spend their days worrying about their families, especially if they have small children or elderly relatives at home. Working from home gives you the chance to be near your family and available if any issue arises.

 5. Less stress

Long commutes, traffic, difficult bosses, uncooperative colleagues and poor working conditions are some of the main causes of stress among workers. This stress can also lead to health problems. Working from home allows you to avoid all these stressful situations and thus enjoy better health.

Here are the downsides of working from home:

1. Isolation

The workplace offers an environment where you can meet and interact with people. However, people who work from home have to deal with loneliness and isolation. When not dealt with, this can have a negative effect on your socializing skills and even lead to depression. To avoid this, you need to make a deliberate effort to get out of the house and interact with others.

2. Inability to separate work from home

When you work from home, you could find yourself being tempted to take care of household affairs instead of working. This could be shopping, cooking, cleaning up or hosting visitors. To avoid this, be sure to draw a clear line between work and home.

3. Distractions

Though working from home allows you to escape office interruptions, it exposes you to several other distractions. This could be children, family, friends and neighbors. To avoid this, you need to let your family and friends know that you are unavailable even though you are at home. It would be advisable to work in a dedicated room with a closed door.

4. Alienation from the goings on in the company

Many things happen on a daily basis in a company. This could be staff changes, changes in strategy or new competitive intelligence. It is very easy to lose touch with what is happening in the company when working from home. You might even miss the opportunity for a promotion. Therefore, if possible, drop by the office at least once a week to touch base with your colleagues and keep updated on the latest developments.

Conclusion

Working from home calls for much discipline, self-control and commitment. Since there is no one constantly looking over shoulder, you have to continually motivate yourself without giving in to distractions.

How to Stay Professional While You Work From Home

Graphic DesignNowadays, the phenomenon of working from home is becoming increasingly common. Working from home can give you a great sense of freedom, allowing you to be creative while working at your own pace. However, to remain productive, it is very important to maintain a sense of professionalism. Here are some tips for staying professional while working from home:

1. Create a work space

When working from home, it is very important to have a dedicated work space. This will enable you to focus on your work and avoid unnecessary distractions. If your home has several rooms, you could convert one into a home office. Alternatively, you could use part of your living room or even your garage. Whatever you opt for, let your work space be used specifically for work. This will psychologically allow you to separate your personal life from your professional life.

2. Have a schedule

When working from home, how you spend your time is your personal responsibility. Since there is no one watching, you can always choose to watch movies instead of working. If this becomes a habit, you will find yourself being lazy and unproductive. Therefore, to stay professional, you need to have a fixed schedule for each day. Keep yourself accountable and avoid making excuses to change your schedule.

3. Eliminate all distractions

The television, social media, children, unexpected visitors and phone calls are some of the common distractions for people working from home. To enhance your productivity, you need to find a way of dealing with these distractions.  First, be sure to switch off your TV when working. Put your phone on silent mode to avoid being distracted by constant notifications. You could schedule specific times in your day to check and reply to messages. In the same way, you need to schedule specific times for interacting with your friends on social media. When it comes to small children, you could hire a nanny to babysit as you work. Finally, make sure your friends know when they can visit and when they can’t.

4. Dress properly

One of the best things about working from home is that you have the freedom to wear what you want. However, how you dress can have an effect on your mindset. For instance, wearing pajamas to work is likely to make you lazy and reduce the sense of seriousness. To create a professional mindset, it would be advisable to dress as if you were reporting to an actual office. However, this does not mean that you have to wear suits and ties. A business casual dress code can work just fine.

5. Take breaks

Spending in front of your computer for long hours sitting can be physically and mentally draining. It is therefore very important to take regular short breaks to refresh your body and mind. Go to the kitchen and grab something to eat or drink. Once in a while, leave the house and take a walk around the neighborhood.  When you get back to your work space, you will feel more rejuvenated and are likely to be more productive.

Conclusion

Working from home is a privilege enjoyed by a few. However, it should not be taken casually. Keeping a professional mindset will greatly enhance your efficiency and effectiveness.