Every job I’ve had until now has been in an office building. I’ve worked in open floor plan offices, co-working office spaces, offices with cubicles, and in an office with a door and my own wall decor.
Which do I prefer? All of them, and none of them.
I can work in each environment and be productive. It wasn’t until working with TANK did I experience working from home every day. That’s right; I’m talking about telecommuting, aka working remotely.
With some time under my belt now, I can say confidently . . . I love it! I had no idea that it would suit me and my season of life so well.
Working remotely is life-giving for some, but draining for others. For me right now — a mother to a daughter in elementary school — working remotely is a perfect fit.
I know there are general concerns that are often associated with remote employees or working remotely, and they almost always include social interaction and work production.
I completely understand these concerns, and working remotely certainly isn't for everyone.
While I like being around people, I don’t need in-person interaction to feel fulfilled or content. And while I like checking Facebook at the beginning of the day (I have to know who to wish a happy birthday), reading through This Day in History mid-afternoon (hey, knowledge is power, right?), and having a flexible schedule (taking 15 minutes to put away laundry never hurt anyone), I tend to get more work done from home than I ever did in an office.
I work optimally and feel the most accomplished when I have a list of things to do, a predictable schedule, and go-to routine. It’s in my nature to create a daily schedule and methodically work through a list of things to do.
I’ve read several books about working remotely, and they do a great job highlighting the things that should be considered when having one or more remote team members. I think these books are great resources and give helpful advice — but they are not the Bible of remote working. Those who thrive as remote workers may love it for different reasons and benefit from it in a variety of ways. Also, each person likely handles it just a little differently than the next. (Not every remote worker is as systematic as I am.)
I pulled together a few thoughts regarding my experience as a remote worker and a few recommendations. Will I always want to work remotely? Could I ever go back to a brick and mortar office with a kitchenette, an impressive industrial copier machine, and teammates to chat with on the fly? Sure. Maybe. But for now, this is the best scenario for me, and I’m so thankful for it!
To land this plane, I wanted to mention just a few final thoughts.
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