Office is where the home is

Published: 26 October, 2011 07:15 IST | Special Features Team |

It may sound like a dream job, but working from home, keeping your own timings and having free time to take care of personal tasks, is not easy.

It may sound like a dream job, but working from home, keeping your own timings and having free time to take care of personal tasks, is not easy. Those who work from home have a greater responsibility and difficulty. Here are some pointers to make working from home a fun concept:

Demarcate your work space
It may just be a desk in a corner of a room, but create that space specifically for your work. If possible, have a separate room or create a screened off area in which you only deal with work issues. Don't keep any personal items there, rather make it a professional area with work files, etc.

Avoid distractions
Make it very clear to your family members that you are 'at work', which means you are not available to answer the door or deal with the maid. Also, never keep your work station in a room with a television in it. The urge to lay back and catch your favourite show will be very strong to resist.

Go to work
Even though you are just moving from one room to the next, get into the role of a professional by playing the part. Get dressed, smart casuals will do. Never work in your 'jammies'; it won't feel right and will reflect in your attitude and ultimate output.

Be disciplined
The 'I'll do this later, I'll go for a walk, I'll take early lunch and a nap' attitude won't work. When there are deadlines to be met, you just may have to miss out on your house work to meet them.

Ideally, keep a schedule for your 'home work'. Start your day at the same regular time, schedule a coffee and lunch break and have a cut off time as well. This will make it clear to your family when you can be available to them and will also let your employers know when you can be reached and give them a cut off point to not call you later and impinge on your personal time.

Don't overload
Remember, when you are working from home, you are practically on your own. So unlike a regular office where you can delegate work or ask colleagues to help out in a jam, there is no backup available. Hence, be realistic in the projects or assignments you take on and set realistic deadlines for them as well.

Get the right hardware
For working from home, you need to have reliable equipment like a computer, Internet connection, phone lines, etc. You also need to cultivate a good network of people like hardware servicemen who solve your connectivity and other problems when they crop up in a jiffy. Sometimes, a problem with the Internet or laptop can cost you a deadline or a project! Working from home can be fun; you only need to train yourself to function in a different way.

Essentials for a home office
>> Laptop or desktop computer
>> Scanner 
>> Printer
>> Fax machine
>> Dedicated landline and mobile connections
>> Internet connection
>> Desk and chair
>> Stationary items

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