It is said that about 35% of companies allow a portion of their workforce to work remotely from home. This has often been viewed by employees as a huge benefit especially by those who don’t currently have this option. However, this doesn’t mean working from home is for everyone. Some people truly operate better around a team and need collaborative energy to succeed. While others find they are far more productive at home without the distractions of the office. So before you take the plunge into a remote position make sure you weigh out the pros and cons and decide what is right for your personality.
Pros of Working Remotely
Design Your Own Office Space Working from home gives you the opportunity to create a space that truly inspires you. You can bet you won’t be in a cubicle so think about what you want to surround yourself with. Setting up a functional workspace is critical so you have a place to “go” regardless how little square footage this actually takes up in your home.
Managing and Creating Your Own Schedule One thing that all successful remote employees have in common is self-motivation. They get energized by being in charge of their own schedule and setting the pace for their day and week. Working independently comes naturally and they find they are most effective when they can set their day and attack it.
Work from Anywhere As they say all you need is a laptop and an internet connection. If you need human interaction you can always set up in a coffee shop or hotel lobby, some remote workers have memberships to shared office space so if they can “head to the office” when they need a break from home. In addition, remote employees are experts at staying connected utilizing tools such as conference calls, video chats and online project management programs to keep lines of communication open with the team.
Saving Money Many people who have transitioned from an office environment to a remote home office notice a nice savings of daily expenses. This may start by making a pot of coffee instead of hitting your favorite luxe coffee shop on the way to work. Next, preparing your lunch at home is better on the budget and typically healthier. Finally, reduced commuting costs can also shave additional monthly expenses.
Become More Solution Driven Working remotely forces you to hunt for the answers to your questions. You no longer have the crutch of asking the colleague beside you for their opinion or advice which automatically makes you more resourceful. Even with companies that offer strong support and resources, their remote workers tend to become more industrious in solving their own problems.
Avoid Office Politics Since remote employees typically only participate in larger team events, like sales meetings, training or client meetings, they keep everything very professional. Without the daily personal interactions it appears they are less likely to be part of office politics. Instead, they rely on their performance to illustrate their persona.
Cons of Working Remotely
A research company conducted several studies allowing a group of employees to move from the office to a remote home office. The findings showed that productivity increased as did the actual number of hours worked per day by the employee. However about 65% of those workers decided they preferred to work in the office and below are some reasons why.
Not Working with a Team One of the first things people say they miss when they go remote is the team. Having people to bounce ideas off, collaborate with and just engage on a daily basis can be very motivating.
Not Working Directly with Leadership When working in a remote office you can lose the opportunity to interact with your boss on a regular basis. This isn’t always a negative but it is a fact that much of what you put into the job at home will go unnoticed outside of your results. This is especially relevant if someone is looking for a mentor.
Too Many Distractions Being at home with the dog, laundry and fridge can prove to be just too distracting for some. Blurring the line between work and home just doesn’t work for everyone. The most effective remote workers get up and get dressed and maintain a morning routine as if they are going to the office.
Missing Out On Work Friendships After college the next pool of new people that you have to farm friendships with are your co-workers. This group has a bond that is unique to those in that company. Many people form life-long friendships with work friends and others just enjoy the diverse group of people and personalities but leave those friendships at the office. Either way, this can provide a big dose of your social life.