Just recently, I woke up the Monday after a nice weekend, expecting to head to work like I always do. But on this specific morning, my health had other plans. Feeling less than ok enough to make my usual journey to work, I decided to let my boss know that I was under the weather, but that I was determined to get work done throughout the day from home.
This would be my first experience working form home since taking the job back in January. Being in charge of our company’s social media, I have read more than a dozen article about telecommuting and working from home, so as the day went on, I decided to give it some thought as to how productive I really felt compared to everything I’ve read about.
I won’t say I didn’t get anything done, but being too young to have any kids or other family distractions, I was surprised how unproductive I actually felt. Even further, the day seemed to fly by, which at the office isn’t usually a terrible thing, but at home, the time was actually missed. I felt much less accomplished compared to the usual. Typically, my day is spent behind a computer screen and most communication done through email anyway, but at home, it was still hard not to feel the disconnect. And maybe it’s just my complete lack of self-control, but with a fully stocked kitchen just a room away, it was hard to focus over the refrigerator constantly calling my name. Even further, there’s something about being in my PJ’s that didn’t really scream “let’s get down to business” either.
Granted, I know this isn’t always the scenario for those working from home, and most likely, none of my fellow telecommuters of the day were also feeling as under the weather as I was, but I couldn’t help but think that this working from home thing wasn’t for me. So I decided to spend this blog sharing other internet-found cons (and perhaps a pro or two to be fair) that have been said about telecommuting because, let’s face it; my own opinion isn’t really worth a whole lot.
Loss of Routine.
Trying to have a good balance between work and life gets slightly blurred when they’re happening in the same place. It’s easy to get distracted with a quick errand you forgot you had to make, the sound of your dog barking to be let in, or even that tempting one-day-only sale at the mall that just showed up in your email. Without the structure and routine of an office, it may be easy to lose some of your motivation and focus. Especially if your old job or routine involved a regular office schedule, it can be much more difficult to establish your new routine without some sort of managerial supervision.
Some articles may say this is helpful to remove the distractions that other coworkers may cause while you’re working, but on the flip side, these coworkers are there to provide easy communication and collaboration for projects and meetings. These social situations are what spark creativity and ideas, so without them, it may be easy to get into mental slumps or lack of concentration. It may also affect how you interact socially with others when the situation does call for it elsewhere.
Lost Opportunities for Team Building
One of the best parts of working in an office is the ability to build relationships and company unity with the ones you work with day in and day out. This face-to-face time helps build a cohesive team and in addition to just helping company productivity and keeping everyone on the same page, it could lead to friendships outside the office as well. And who could be against that? (Happy Hour, anyone?)
Lack of Clear Guidelines
Lastly, with a blended staff, it makes the ability to keep clear and specific company guidelines in order. This goes hand in hand with communication that was mentioned earlier. Especially if certain company business hours or specific trips into the office for meetings aren’t enforced with those working from home, it could lead to miscommunication and frustration between employees and clients.
It’s obviously nice to be able to make your own schedule. And for some of the same reasons I mentioned would be distracting to your productivity, it could also be beneficial to you if running an errand, whether work related or not, can fit into your flexible schedule. If you’re able to master a self-driven routine and remain motivated throughout the day from home, then more power to you. If this is the case, and you’re from King of Prussia or Reading areas in Pennsylvania, then check out our office furniture retail stores for quality furniture, so your home office can be just as nice as any office building around!