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Remember when Yahoo’s CEO, Marissa Mayer informed her employees they could no longer work from home? Even before this story made headlines there were, and still are, a small number of companies who simply cannot wrap their heads around telecommuting partly, because it does not make business sense and most cases, it’s an unconventional approach for some executives and business owners. It’s important to note that there are several jobs that comprise of the regular 8:00am-4:00pm or 9:00am-5:00pm shifts and that these jobs require employees to be at their desks on a daily basis. But, when outside sales personnel, some creative positions or even software sales engineers who, spend roughly 80% of their time visiting customers– it’s quite baffling to hear that these individuals are required to drive to their company offices every day.

Is Telecommuting The New Norm?

For those who have the option of telecommuting and if you are still having difficulty developing a routine, the following is a few tips, gleaned, from an article titled “7 Ways to Make Remote Work Better” by Eric Samson contributor for Entreprenur.com:

1. Stick to a routine.
Maintain the same schedule at home as you do when you are in the office. This is helpful for a number of reasons. Since you are on the same timetable as your coworkers, you can ask and answer questions in a timely fashion. Another benefit is that you adhere to a normal routine. It is enticing to sleep in and start the workday late. But that might also mean working through dinner and even past midnight. Sticking to a reasonable work schedule will ensure both peak productivity and a healthy work-life balance.

2. Have a designated office space.
Identify a place in your home where you work best without distractions. Designate that space as your office, and nothing else. Of course, it is not enough to simply pick a desk, open your laptop and get to work. One of the most important things is that you create an atmosphere conducive to working. Make sure to have a clutter-free environment to maximize your organization and productivity. Have folders to store files and keep an inventory. This way you save time (and money!) looking for things. A tidy office space also helps you look professional during video conference calls.

3. Adjust your environment.
Take advantage of working alone by changing your surroundings to fit your needs. A study by the National Bureau of Economic Research suggests that hot temperatures lead to declines in economic productivity. To avoid a sluggish work day, set your thermostat to a temperature that is most comfortable for you. Other researchers have found that playing nature sounds in the background improves employees’ moods and work efficiency. Add nature sounds to your playlist to optimize your ability to concentrate on your job.

You can read the rest of the article by on entrepreneur.com. It appears telecommuting is not as easy as it appears to be. If you are seasoned pro, you probably already know what it entails and if you are starting out, it would be wise to test the waters by doing it one to two days a week.

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Is Telecommuting The New Norm?

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