Occupational psychologist Professor Cary Cooper has a lot to say about the benefits of working from home. He cites some laws that may protect workers, and discusses the psychology behind why remote workers are not always trusted to use their time well. Here are a few snippets of advice to people who want to succeed at working from home.
(Photo Credit: sbat65/Flickr)
1. Office Space
Avoid lounging while working. If you will routinely work from home, set up an office area where you may work comfortably but free from distractions such as entertainment, sleep, or food and drink. Also, you will need a professional backdrop if you have video meetings with clients.
Let officemates and clients know your schedule. You may send out an “out of office” email when you are working remotely. Check your work email every hour if you can. The flip side of overcommunicating is being out of touch, and that may send the message that you are unavailable or not really working.
When Marissa Mayer banned working from home for Yahoo! employees, she cited the need for better communication and collaboration. She also stated that “speed and quality are often sacrificed when we work from home.”
3. Spin is Important
Professor Cooper warns homeworkers against talking about working remotely as if it were a vacation. This gives the wrong impression, and causes co-workers to feel resentful and to not trust that you are actually working when you are not in the office.
Instead, when you are in the office, speak freely about what you accomplished while working remotely. Let people know how productive you are and how valuable your achievements are. You may sound like a braggart, but they will be more likely to trust you to focus on work from remote locations.
Tell Us What You Think
Do you work remotely? Tell us about it! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.