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The Pros and Cons of Working From Home

18 May 2022

Deciding to work from home is a big step. The necessity of working from home is no longer compulsory - many firms are offering home working as a choice, and it is a big shift if you are used to office work and being surrounded by others.

Some love working from and others not so much. If it is a choice or a compulsory transition, here are a few things to consider before you set up your home office.

Pro: Remote workers feel less stressed and more focused

Those working from home can work freely without being affected by external factors such as environmental office noise and managerial pressure.

Interruptions by other co-workers can cause loss of focus and procrastination. Therefore, working in a home environment offers a more free and focused environment, you are also surrounded by familiarity.

If you have just started working at home and are an extrovert, this may seem a bit boring at first, but over time you will get used to it and the home environment can help you stay calm and on top of your tasks.

Con: Working from home can be lonely

Working alone at home can make you feel lonely. This can be a difficult process for people who are more extroverted and have their best ideas when surrounded by their team.

Music is a great remedy for loneliness, YouTube offers a plethora of working music to help you stay focused and forget that you are alone.  

Working alone at home does not mean that you will be completely isolated from the social work environment. Most offices run on communication software like Slack, and Teams. You can also hop onto a video chat with your colleagues or send them messages on communication forums if you need feedback on your work.

You can also socialise during breaks. Whether it be with friends on the phone, your family or going out for a walk and talking to your neighbours. There are ways you can socialise while working from home.

Pro: No daily commute.

If you are working from home, you will not have to wake up early every morning and commute to work.

You will not have to worry about being late for the bus or train, whether you need to stop to fill up the tank of your car, what the traffic will be like, diversions, roadworks and other obstacles that sit between the office and your front door.

While working from home, it is important to still wake up at a certain time and repeat daily routines, however, you will quickly find that the morning routine is much less hectic when you do not have a commute to consider.

Con: Communication and collaboration can be a challenge.

Ensuring cooperation and harmony while working in an office environment can be a little more challenging when working at home.

Of course, working on a project face-to-face and exchanging ideas will be more productive than at home via video conference, and video conference software is a fantastic tool - but it has its limitations.

You may not be able to get a hold of someone when you need them, or you may be inundated with smaller, less important virtual meetings which limit your productivity.

The key is to set boundaries on your availability and plan collaborative projects way ahead of time.

Pro: Remote workers have flexibility in their schedules.

People working from home have flexible working opportunities. If they have an urgent matter arise during work, they have the chance to take a short break and take care of their other responsibilities.

Unfortunately, if you are a normal office worker, you are limited in your capability to respond to emergencies, take care of other tasks and address your work/life balance. Many home workers use lunch breaks to get housework done, so they can relax at the end of the day.

Psychologically, flexible working removes the sense of haste. As a result, you become less stressed and relaxed and more able to concentrate on your work.

Opportunities like these cause working at home to create a more attractive work environment, and the main reason that working from home has become so popular among employees.

Con: It's challenging to build a remote company culture.

In order for a company to be successful, all employees must embrace the companyand aim to further its goals.

This is through team members getting to know each other, and establishing close relationships.

One of the biggest problems in remote working companies is the lack of communication and the employees don't have much face to face contact with each other.

This inevitably becomes one of the biggest obstacles for the formation of a ‘spirit of togetherness’ and integrity.

In order to fully own something, it is necessary to have knowledge about the whole thing. In such cases, companies hold meetings 2-3 times a month in a common office for their employees to meet in person. In this way, employees get to know each other and increase their understanding of the company as a whole.

Executives and managers also have the opportunity to get to know their employees better at such meetings, and how they can leverage their talent and increase their internal efficiency.