Working from Home – Is it for you?
As party plan consultant and managers we enjoy the luxury of being able to work from home when we are not out partying. But is it for you?
When you are on the 9-5 treadmill, working from home sounds like a godsend. Imagine not having to get up at the same time every day, not to have to get dressed up for the office, to work from the laptop in your comfy armchair, have the luxury of fitting your personal appointments in around your work. Oh how wonderful it sounds. And it is in so many ways but after a few weeks you realise that you need to give yourself a few ground rules if you are going to be productive. To work from home you need to be very disciplined and self-motivated.
Here are my ground rules:
1. Try to stick to a routine – yes it is great that you can get up when you want and choose to work late if that suits you but it really helps to follow a routine and make late nights the exception. Don’t forget people you will need to speak to will keep business hours so it helps to try to work those hours yourself
2. Always get dressed in the morning – what a temptation to stay in your PJ’s all day but it has a big impact on your mental state. How can you negotiate like the business woman that you are when you are sat in your fluffy pink slippers. It also feels nice to make yourself presentable. Sure there is no point in padding round the house in a business suit and full on make up but making yourself feel smart goes a long way.
3. Make sure you have office space that is separate from the rest of the house – it is so nice to be able to shut the door to your office at night and know that now is home and family time.
4. Don’t put the TV on – it’s amazing how addictive Dr Phil can be! Before you know it half the day has gone by watching daytime television that can’t be good for anyone, least of all your business.
5. Give yourself breaks and set working hours – when you work from home the danger is that you will never feel like you stop working. It is too easy just to quickly answer that business email or finish that report you were working on.
6. Get out and meet other people – working from home can mean you miss the social aspects of a workplace. Make sure you make the effort to meet up with friends for lunch or go on that business networking event and meet other people who work from home. Great for your sanity!
If you can get the ground rules in place early on working from home can be a wonderfully rewarding experience. And one that, after two years, I wouldn’t swap for the world.