Working From Home

There are many advantages & disadvantages to working from home. Some people are more disciplined than others & find it easy to conduct a fully professional business from their home, but with every positive aspect of this flexible working environment comes challenges that need to be addressed if its going to work for you.

So you get up, start the day with a coffee & disciplined you goes straight up to the office to errrr... Check your Facebook! Okay so a quick glance at Facebook & your off working solid all day between, coffee breaks, breaks to allow time to put the washing in, walk the dogs, phone your mum, play solitaire & check all those other important Social networks. Before you know it you have been in your home office for eight hours & aside from a couple of e-mails & one half finished letter or proposal your only other achievement for the day is the highest score on Facebook Bingo! If you are laughing at this it is probably because some of it rings true.. We are all guilty of being sidetracked at times.

Advantages Of Working From Home

Saves on overhead costs, as you do not need premises
Avoids becoming tied into long tenancy agreements
You can arrange work around family commitments
Saves on time & money spent traveling to work
Avoids the noise & distractions of the workplace
Flexible dress code when non customer facing
No work rules relating to break times, smoking, eating or listening to music whilst working etc.

Disadvantages Of Working From Home

Separating home & work life
The initial expense of setting up
Domestic distractions & interruptions
Lack of work discipline

Work From Home Effectively

Try to allocate specific space in your home for your work environment which is completely separate from your day to day living environment. A separate room that you can shut off to the rest of your home is ideal.

Dressing appropriately for work can assist you in getting more done & having the right attitude for work. Sitting in your ‘scruffs’ or nightwear all day because no one can see you may affect your attitude & professionalism.

Set specific work times & stick to them. These can be as flexible as you like but stick to a structure for example: Work 9am - 11am then take a long break for ½ hour where you can have a snack, put your washing out or attend to personal chores, or phone calls or even play on Solitaire! Back to work 11.30 until 1.30pm, then if you like take a two hour lunch break to do your shopping or tidy the house or tend to other responsibilities. Only you know what time you can allow yourself ‘off’ each day but whatever that time is make sure it is structured & you have a routine in place.

Make sure family & friends know your schedule & in the hours that you specifically set that you are ‘at work’ you  will not be accepting social calls either by phone or in person.

The other side to the coin is that you feel like you are working all the time. If you are in ‘non work’ time, do not be tempted to go do some work because your office is there. If you were working from a premises you would not drive to work at 2am & this should be no different. Your work/life balance is really important for both you & your family!

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