Thursday, February 14, 2008

The pitfalls of telecommuting jobs

I work from my home, or I should say I have a home business. How much work that actually gets done depends on the day. There are a lot of pitfalls with telecommuting jobs and I fall into every one. The great plus about working at home is the flexibility. Unfortunately that is also the biggest pitfall out there. It is too flexible, you ether do nothing but work all the time or never get any work done. You’re never away from your work; it is always in your home waiting to be done. It is easy to get caught up in what you are doing and loose track of every thing else. Or you get every thing else done because you can always do your work later and nothing gets done. You want to sleep in, go ahead, you can just work latter. You can fit appointments in any time, but then you find your day is full of nothing but appointments.

Working from home can be very rewarding or the most frustrating experience ever, or both at the same time. To be able to work at home you have to be a self-motivator, police your self, be very organized and get the work done. There is no one to help you when you have problems; you have to rely on yourself. Sick days, what are those? People also expect you to be working all the time. So its 6 pm your at home so it is ok for me to call you about a job or to give you more work. What do you mean you have a life out side of work, other commitments? You work from home you should be available all the time.

People do not treat you with the same respect as they do people they see as having real jobs. You know, ones you have to leave the house for. It does not matter how successful you are or busy, you stay at home so you don’t have a real job. Friends or family call or drop in any time, they know you are going to be home. Do they respect the fact that you are working? No, you can make time for them. It is not like you have a real job where you have to go to work. If your kid is sick, you end up taking care of them at home. Why, well you were going to be home any way. How hard can it be to get your work done at the same time as taking care of your child? So what if you have a deadline or have to run around to get some things done. You work at home, so work around having to take care of your child.

For me I am lucky in that both my husband and I work on the business together. How well the business does is up to us. We help motivate each other, and help each other from falling into the pitfalls. It took some time because when we first started it was too easy to find the day gone and no work done, or we just worked 12 hrs non-stop. But we learned that we had to have an area that was just for work. It keeps our work life apart from our home life. Our commute may only be to the basement but it is still a commute. If I don’t make jewellery we don’t have any to sell. If we don’t put the items on our e-store we cannot sell it. If we don’t ship ASAP our customers are not happy and we lose sales. We control what we do and how we do it. We don’t have to answer to any one but our customers. We love what we do so the work gets done. That all said and done, I have to get back to work.

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