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Working at Home: Do it right

Some people work better with ambient noise or chatter, while others work best with less distractions. If you happen to fall in the latter camp, then you might enjoy taking advantage of flexible work options. Working at home doesn’t just require an employer who gives you the opportunity to do so, it also requires a strong will, confidence in your worth, and integrity. Working at home is still a newer trend in most work places. This means there are still plenty of skeptics out there who simply won’t be on board with the change in work style. Overcoming this particular cultural hurdle can be done, but taking ownership is essential.

Here are six easy ways to do it right:

  1. Be transparent
    Keep your Outlook/Google calendar updated. This helps keep team members, bosses, and other colleagues in the know about where you are at all times. The last thing you want is people feeling like you’re hard to track down.
  1. Remind, remind, remind
    It’s easy to be “out of sight, out of mind” when it comes to working at home. As flex work options continue to be offered, it’s on everyone to be considerate and accepting when it comes to how people work. However, you can help yourself immensely by communicating in person when you plan to work at home. It’s important to reinforce that you’re just as available as would be in the office as you are at home or setup a regular schedule.
  1. Work with integrity
    Having self-discipline and setting parameters for yourself is essential when you work remotely. It’s really the only way to maximize the benefits of working at home—which can be a more focused and efficient environment if you approach it that way.
  1. Sit up straight
    If you find yourself getting too comfortable, brew a pot of coffee and setup shop at your kitchen table. This works the best for me when I need an extra push to cross off the final few things on the day’s to-do list.
  1. Keep distractions to a minimum
    Don’t dilute the benefit of a quieter environment by introducing or allowing distractions. This includes keeping the morning news on too long, distracting music, or even too much pet time. You wouldn’t allow those things at work so they shouldn’t be allowed at home.

Working at home is not for everyone. If it’s not your cup of tea, stick to the traditional workplace, but avoid chastising others for it. Some people thrive in an environment with less distractions. What it comes down to is whether or not the work is getting done. If you know you’ll be just as efficient working at home (if not more), advocate for yourself. At the end of the day you’ll be a better asset to your company.

 

About Mike Wanta

Mike works on the Corporate Communications team at TDS and is the manager of the TDS Business Blog. He has a passion for all things business, storytelling, and teaching. Mike attended Edgewood College and earned degrees in English Literature and Journalism, while competing on the Men’s tennis team. He recently completed his Masters in Sustainability and Business. With his newfound free time, he plays music, tennis, and reads (a lot).

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