Working online or working at home is an attractive proposition, to name a few: you don’t have to drive or commute to work, you don’t need to take shower (though most do) every morning, you do not have to dress up, your Boss cannot breath behind your neck, you can juggle work and chores (I know someone who cooks while on an online meeting), and most online jobs allow a relatively flexible schedule.
But working from home, or work from home jobs, is not for everyone. It is not as stable as an office job but it can be rewarding too. It all depends on your risk appetite.
I’ve been an online professional for a year and if I have to sum up how I flourished I could think of three things that helped me:
- Establish a routine – create and stick to a schedule. If you work from home, there will be a lot of distraction because people will assume that you are available anytime. To counter this, let them know your schedule; when you are working and when you are free. This has been really helpful to me because I am able to minimize distractions so I can work and be more productive. When you are new, it’s going to take a little getting used to, especially to the people at home.
- Dedicate a space for work – Yes, it does help. When you are in that space it gives you a mentality that you are “working” and the people around you will know that you should not be disturbed. It helps as well that you are comfortable: tolerable noise and room temperature, based on study lighting affects mood and performance too. Of course, feel free to take quick breaks and work at any spot at home to break the monotony (in my case, the living room sofa is where I do my creative planning stuff or the occasional trip to the coffee shop).
- Network and have fun – Don’t forget that we are social beings, we need people to talk to, to interact with, to exchange ideas with, to de-stress, to share hobbies with, to share our lives with, and etc. Network to have more professional connections, you never know where the next great opportunity will come from. Network to have better quality of life, we are human after all, we need people to enrich our lives and people need us to enrich their lives. Have fun, you’ll have a lot of opportunity to do so.
That sums up what I have learned working online (and from home) so far. If you are planning to make the jump, consider these things.