working from home

  • Working from home: An infographic

    If you’re a regular reader, you probably aware of how enthusiastic I am about the benefits of home working. My personal experience is that working from home makes me more productive, less stressed and I’m more confident about taking on new skills and responsibilities.

    So when I came across the infographic below, I was pleased to see more businesses embracing the virtual workforce approach. In fact, 56% of senior leaders and hiring managers from Fortune 500 companies with over 5,000 employees believe virtual work will increase in their company.

    Asia is currently leading this move in working styles, with 76% of Asia-based businesses planning to increase telecommuting and teleconferencing in their company, compared to 53% in the USA.

    It makes sense really for businesses to consider increasing their virtual workforce. A reduction in office costs, increase in productivity and potentially an increase in job satisfaction is undoubtedly a good thing for any business. Additionally, it also widens the recruiting net, when an employer isn’t restricted to looking for people in the local area. Obviously it’s not an option for all companies, like retail, but for office-based employees it’s definitely a consideration.

    That said, companies do need to be aware of employees feeling disconnected, so it’s worth organising face-to-face meetings occasionally too, along with regular appraisals.

    (Source: Mashable)

    If you had the option of working from home, would you take it?

    If you already work from home, how do you find it affects your work?

    Let me know in the comments below.

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  • Five myths people believe about freelancers

    1

    Freelancers come across a lot of myths about their profession. In the same way that non-tweeters say Twitter is “a bunch of people tweeting about their breakfasts”, people who don’t freelance have a lot of ideas about what we get up to.

    Here are a few of my favourites:

    “Freelancers? They’re just people that work at home in their pyjamas, right?”

    Of course we don’t*. Just look at Poppy from What I Wore Today – glam and freelance. Plus a lot of freelancers work in coffee shops etc. Turns out, wearing your oldest Winnie the Pooh pjs to Starbucks is a no-no.

    “Ooh, I’ve got a day off. Bob must have some free time, I’ll drop by unannounced for lunch.”

    Please don’t. We’re either busy trying to hit a deadline, or rocking bed hair and no make up. Probably both. Either way, it’s gonna get awkward.

    “Freelancers can take a holiday whenever they want, right?”

    Sure. As long as we don’t mind going unpaid for a couple of weeks. Or, more likely, doing all the work in the weeks before (and therefore spending the holiday recovering). We are however, masters of the weekend away.

    2“Freelancing isn’t a stable job”

    At the moment, I’m going through the process of mortgages and house hunting with the boyfriend. Despite the fact that:

    a) I’ve worked with a number of my clients for a couple of years, and they’re happy to confirm that this will continue into the future.

    B) I earn 50% more in my freelancing than I do in my part time job.

    Our mortgage advisor will only take my part time job into account, as the rest isn’t stable enough.

    Personally, if you have a wide variety of long-term clients, I don’t see why it’s any less stable than working in a company where redundancies are possible. In fact, some companies are turning to outsourcing to us freelancers, rather than taking on a full time staff.

    “Freelancers are unsociable, preferring to work from home rather than in an office”

    Bollocks. I’ve met more people, and made more friends, through freelancing than I ever did through working in an office. We work from home for a multitude of reasons, but personally I prefer working for myself, I’m more productive when I work from home and I have more freedom with my career direction.

    * I’m lying. I’ve been known to slip down the slippery slope of slobville. You start off in smart jeans and a top, downgrade to a pair of more comfortable jogging bottoms….and before you know it you’re wearing a onesie, and the postman asks if you’re off sick today….

    What myths have you come across about freelancing?

  • An unusual ‘mobile office’….

    Usually, when people say they’ve got a ‘mobile office’, I assume they’re talking about their laptop, phone or tablet. Y’know, something you can actually fit in your bag without giving yourself a hernia.

    And then I spotted this office on wheels on Fancy (click on the image to enlarge).

    It’s quite…compact. I’m not entirely sure those seats would be particularly comfortable. But if you’re tight for space and working from home, it could be the solution.