Working from home may seem like an ideal scenario for employers, employees and freelance traders. After all, it minimizes overheads, reduces the need for office space and provides more flexibility, with the ability to work when it’s busy, and do other things when it’s not.
But there are a few potential pitfalls to keep in mind when working from home.
- In this post-COVID-19 world, some employees may be concerned about the prospect of returning to work, worrying about using public transport, or that they do not have enough real work to support them when they return to full-time work. Working from home helps to make sure that they are available when necessary, can work in their own time as they please, and then gradually regain their confidence after perhaps a few weeks of absence.
- Individual entrepreneurs may have had to reduce overheads, give up support staff and possibly try to recover some of the land lost during the lockdown. They may have to start from scratch and build their business from scratch. Working from home is the first step towards recovery, as many important support services are activated almost when and where they are needed.
“Some logistical considerations need to be explored, at least initially. Is it possible to create a dedicated workplace? Trying to work at the kitchen table or in a crowded, noisy place or in a place with other usage requirements is not conducive to a productive work environment. Sharing recruitment with children and their homework is also irrelevant. Evaluate the available space, software requirements, Internet bandwidth, data security, and any additional learning requirements. Are any staff required for personal protective or other protection?
- Meetings, networking and teambuilding are often an important part of business success. Good relationships contribute to business development. Those who have a reputation for being honest and well-treated to their employees and customers always achieve more.
- Homework allows you to work according to your own schedule, adapt to children and their school hours and their various wishes, be able to plan face-to-face meetings or more comfortably manage household chores. But these non-work-related things can be more and more distracting because you go to the gym too often, meet friends for a cup of coffee, or do household chores instead of real work.
- Set a clear clock for yourself to go to work, where, even when you are not particularly busy, you will check both mentally and physically, send emails, update information on social networks, make phone calls, communicate and initiate conversations with colleagues, make relationship decisions.
“But also make it clear that you’re done with the end of the work. The indication can become a trap when working from home; it’s tempting to work until something is done, or “just” check again for fear of missing out on (FOMO) or being under-productive.
- Distraction cannot be caused by absence from a formal office. Sometimes you may be tempted to immerse yourself in different parts of the work and give it up and not finish the job until you start something new. If there is no other pressing problem, it is better to remain disciplined and focus on one job at a time.
- Keeping a good list can ensure that there is no danger of forgetting something new, important or noteworthy. This avoids wasting time and accidentally jumping from one place to another.
- The main problem with working from home may be the consequences of prolonged social exclusion and the degree of fear of some employees or individual entrepreneurs leaving home to meet others. Some people have experienced a personal tragedy, perhaps first hand. The prospect of attending busy meetings or seminars can be daunting, and individual mental and physical safety should be taken into account.
“How do you dress now?” I venture to say that many of us have spent weeks in everyday clothes, sometimes refreshing the upper and visible part of our body for the next zoom or Skype call.