Career | How to decide to work from home

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There are pros and cons to working in an employee-filled office. If you haven’t made a decision yet about the pros and cons, we can help. Pros are collaboration, open communication, friendships, live training, professional dress (sometimes), and professional work stations. Cons are commuting, rigid schedule, purchasing and wearing professional clothes, frequent interruptions, impromptu meetings, parking, walking, spending money on lunch, and missed time to be home with children.

Working from home is a solution to all the cons of working in a typical office. Start and end times are controlled by you, so are breaks. You save money by not commuting, parking, buying lunches, and paying for daycare. You save time by not commuting and getting primped for work. The decrease in person-to-person interaction is made up for by phone calls and webinars. Also, any location can be your office since most jobs require a cell phone and laptop. Visit Starbucks for a few hours every Monday for a change of scenery. Move your workspace to the dining or living room to be more laid back. As long as the work gets done, your comfort in your environment will bust productivity.

Productivity, ah the p word. Not everyone feels productive at home, mainly because they have been trained to not be. To get out of the at-home-slump, the following tips can get you started:

  1. Designate one room or part of a room as the work space. You mean business when you are sitting there. No distractions allowed.
  2. Purchase or reuse a table/desk solely as your office desk. Get away from the kitchen or dining table. Find nice $40 desks on Walmart.com, or visit local resale shops.
  3. Create white noise. This could be a playlist on Spotify playing at a low level. Spotify, which is free, also has saved playlists like Coffeehouse Sounds.
  4. Use a notebook only for your to-do list. At the top of each page, write the day’s date. Items on the list must be completed in that day. Start with 3 top priority items, and make them specific enough to complete in the day. We have a free productivity tool here.
  5. Know when to end the day. The work will be waiting for you when you wake up. Don’t jam too many tasks in your day.

What are your concerns with making the decision? Share them here .

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