Considering the Virtual Office
Technology has changed the work world at large. Telecommuting grew immensely in 2012, and with the way things are going, it will continue to grow. The question is: how far will telecommunication take workers out of the office? Will there be a day when employees won’t even have office space? Gini Dietrich of the notable PR and Marketing blog Spin Sucks explores the pros and cons of a virtual office.
Dietrich speaks from the perspective of turning her business completely virtual, meaning that people can maximize daily productivity by working from home and reducing interruptions. As a smart businesswoman, she decided that the company would analyze its virtual work system in 10 months to decide if it should stay or go. A unanimous decision was made to continue the practice.
When making a pros and cons list, Gini realized that there were few cons, if any at all. Some of the pros include:
Increased productivity (by 30%!).
Focus on results rather than building hours.
Reduced costs for flying in clients and scheduling meetings.
Avoiding HR problems that come with office space.
Phone and Skype: These are the two best communication routes for remote work.
Start good habits: The first few months of working from home will establish your habits and work ethic. Make sure to avoid leaving the TV on or keeping Facebook open if it will distract you from your work.
Overcommunicate: Weekly updates, statuses and check-ins may seem redundant, but when face-to-face communication is eliminated, you have to find another way to maintain efficient teamwork.
Treat yourself: Remember the pros of working from home and take (moderate) advantage of them. Breaks during the day may include walking the dog or brewing your favorite Keurig coffee or French press.
Know how to turn it off: The most difficult aspect of remote work is argued to be turning it off when you’re done, because in a sense it never leaves you. You must be intentional about ending your workday at a reasonable hour to make time for the rest of your life.
If these tips help you as much as me, you’ll be considering new possibilities for the future of work. After all, something that consumes so much of your time should be meaningful and fun!