So you wanna telecommute?

I was this article on The Huffington Post today and I think they missed a few key points so I shared them on the Facebook this morning. I think I’ll also share them here.

Telecommuting is great, but it isn’t honestly for everyone. Some people do need that shuffle of the office. But for those who can deal with working form home and who have understanding families that know work is a state of mind not a location and just because you’re down the hall doesn’t mean they can come ask you to go and get some milk mid-day then Telecommuting is absolutely worth it. I’ve been working form home since I started with AT&T and for me it isn’t any different form working in an office since 100% of my job is remote based work.

Telecommuting works. As someone who works form home I offer up a little free advice for anyone about to make the switch from the work office to the home office.

      • Dedicate your workspace:I have an entire room dedicated to AT&T. My home office is a nice sized (15×18) room with a large U shaped desk that has everything I need to do my job, including a door. Your space may vary but you get the idea.
      • When you’re at work….you’re at work:That may sound redundant but its important to remember when you work from home and other family members will be around during your normal work hours that they completely understand when you are working you may as well be at an office downtown.
      • When you’re not working leave the office: Having that separate workspace is very important. It’s one thing if you work from home once in a blue moon but if you telecommute full time don’t work form your dining room table because if you don’t separate the home office form your home space you may burn out because you feel like you never leave the office.
      • Don’t use your home phone for work related calls: Either use a company supplied Cell phone or get a secondary phone line so you can use the phone when you need it for work and just as importantly don’t place your private home phone in your office if you can help it. Let those telemarketers calling your house go to voicemail just like they did when you worked in a corporate office.
      • Take normal breaks and lunches:One of the hardest things to remember is that just because you work from home doesn’t mean you still can’t take that 10:30am smoke break. Or that noon lunch. And when you take that break, leave your dedicated office and go eat lunch in the dinning room or kitchen. It’s good to move around.
      • When work is done…work is done:Now I’m not saying don’t stay past 5pm ever. But remember to treat the home office as you would your current corporate office. If you don’t need to spend all weekend working on something then don’t do it, because you need to keep your social life outside of work, for your sanity and those around you.
      • Resist the temptations that distract you form work:You’re at home after all. Make sure you have the will power to stay self motivated to continue to work and make sure you aren’t slacking off, watching TV past your work start time or playing games on the computer or updating your facebook status….you get the idea. Working form home does require you to be self-motivated and more importantly it requires you to work without someone keeping you on task.

That’s my take on working from home. You will find we are all different. If you work from home or are making that transition then I wish you luck and congratulate you on making that step.

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