Working from home

As the 21st century evolves, so does the work environment. More and more companies are moving away from the so-very-last-century practice of gathering all the minions in a cubicle farm and are replacing physical boundaries with technological ties. A 2014 study found that 38% of employers allow at least some employees to work from home on a regular basis.

Teleworking results in greater mobility and agility for the company, and also happier and more productive employees. Stanford University studied a travel company, Ctrip, (https://web.stanford.edu/~nbloom/WFH.pdf) and learned that telecommuters were 13% more productive, saved the company almost $2000 per employee on office support and worked more hours with fewer sick days – all with half the attrition of a more traditional employee.

In order for this to work for everyone, though, there has to be trust between employer and employee. If you’re a teleworker, or want to be, take to heart these 5 best practices for virtual work success.

Location, Location, Location.

Find the right spot in your house and make it sacrosanct. This doesn’t have to be an entire room, though it might be. It just needs to be professional-looking (think of a good background for video calls), quiet and distraction free, with the high-tech tools you’ll need, like high-speed Internet access. If your home doesn’t fit the bill, consider finding a telework center near your home – whether that’s a friendly Starbucks or a full-on rented space. In a similar vein, make sure that you still maintain a professional look as well. Even if you spend most of your time in sweatpants (lucky you), having a decent shirt and a slick haircut will help you psychologically as well as on those Skype meetings.

Set a Clear Schedule.

Your employer and your work-life balance will thank you. Ensure there are clear